Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

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Glossary of Terms

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

--A--

Allied Orders of the Grand Army of the Republic. The five Orders established by the authority of the Grand Army of the Republic. They are Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War; Woman's Relief Corps; Ladies of the Grand Army of the Republic; Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War and the Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Frequently referred to as the Allied Orders or the Allied Orders of the GAR.

Altar. The most prominent position in the center of the Camp or Encampment when opened in the Ritualistic form. Resting upon the altar in open meetings is the open Bible and the line between the altar and the Commander may never be crossed while the meeting is in session.

Associate. A person who is associated with the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War who is not able to meet the membership criteria delineated in Title 36, Chapter 24, Section 535 of the U. S. Code. Associates pay the same dues and wear the membership badge of the Order suspended from a solid blue ribbon (see Member, Junior).

ASUVCW. Correct abbreviation for Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Membership is open to all female relatives of Members of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War as well as direct descendents of veterans of the Union Forces of the Civil War. One of the Allied Orders of the Grand Army of the Republic.

Auxiliary. A local unit of the Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Generally followed by a number.

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--B--

Banner. Official journal of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War where the General Orders of the Commander-in-Chief are published, along with news and articles concerning the Order.

Brother. A male who is either a Member, Associate, Junior, Honorary Member or Life Member of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

By-Laws. A set of rules for Departments and Camps subordinate to the Constitution and Regulations of the Order, required to be approved by the Department Commander for Camps and by the Commander-in-Chief for Departments.

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--C--

Camp. A local unit of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Generally preceded by a name and followed by a number.

Camp Council. An entity within a Camp that approves all expenditures and audits the books of the Camp Treasurer. It helps design and implement the plan to obtain sufficient funds for the Camp to operate. It is responsible for finding a place for the Camp to meet.

Camp Guard. A ceremonial unit of Brothers organized within a camp for parades and other ceremonial occasions. No person in a Camp Guard will hold any rank above Captain. Such Camp Guards are independent of the National Military Affairs Committee and the Sons of Veterans Reserve.

Camp Orders. Orders issued by the Camp Commander only (see General Orders, Department Orders, Special Orders).

Charter. A document issued by the Commander-in-Chief giving a Department or Camp the right to exist within the Order and under its regulations.

Circle. A local unit of the Ladies of the Grand Army of the Republic. Generally preceded by a name and followed by a number.

COA. Abbreviation for the Council of Administration of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

Commander-in-Chief. The senior elected and chief executive officer of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Within the guidelines of the Federal Charter, Constitution, Regulations, National Encampments and Council of Administration, he governs the day to day operations of the Order. He issues General Orders and represents the Order on a national basis.

Commandery-in-Chief. A term synomous with the National Organization of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

Constitution. The governing directive or bylaws of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War it expands upon our Federal Charter as found within the U. S. Code.

Corps. A local unit of the Woman's Relief Corps. Generally preceded by a name and followed by a number.

Council of Administration. The National "board of directors" of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Among other duties, the Council of Administration sets policy for operations of the Order. Also known as the National Council of Administration.

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--D--

Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War, 1861-1865, Inc. An organization of women who can trace their ancestry to a Union soldier, sailor or Marine in the Civil War. Local units are called Tents. One of the Allied Orders of the Grand Army of the Republic.

Department. A group of Camps (or Auxiliaries, Corps, Tents or Circles) generally within one or more states which meets annually in Department Encampment. Departments are chartered by the Commander-in-Chief.

Department Commander. The senior elected and chief executive officer of a Department.

Department Council. An entity within a Department that devises and recommends such measures as will enable the Department to meet its necessary expenditures, and includes the auditing of the Department's book of accounts and making a report thereof to the Department Encampment. The Department Council has no other authority.

Department Orders. Orders issued by the Department Commander only (see General Orders, Camp Orders, Special Orders).

Department President. The senior elected officer of a Department for the Woman's Relief Corps, Ladies of the Grand Army of the Republic, Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War and Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Each of the Allied Orders elects its own Department Presidents.

DUVCW. The correct abbreviation for Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War, 1861-1865, Inc.

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--E--

Employer Identification Number. A number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service to all business entities. This number is used to identify tax returns and other government information. Every Camp and Department is REQUIRED to have an EIN and report it to the Department and National Secretary. Failure to do so can jeopardize the Order's federal tax-exempt status.

Encampment. The official body of the National Organization of each of the Allied Orders and of their Departments. They meet annually to conduct the business of the organization and to elect officers for the ensuing year. Membership in National Encampments is made up of the Commander-in-Chief (or National President), National elected officers, all past Commanders-in-Chief (or past National Presidents), all Department Commanders (or Department Presidents), all past Department Commanders (or past Department Presidents) and delegates based upon the population of each department. Department Encampments are made of up the Department Commander (or Department President), Department elected officers, all past Department Commanders (or past Department Presidents), all Camp Commanders (or Auxiliary, Circle, Tent or Corps Presidents), all past Camp Commanders (or past Presidents) and delegates based on the population of each Camp (or Auxiliary, Circle, Tent or Corps).

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--F--

Federal Charter. Found in Title 36 of the U. S. Code, which serves as the Articles of Incorporation of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War..

Fraternity, Charity and Loyalty. The principles upon which the Grand Army of the Republic and its Allied Orders were founded, and under which the Allied Order currently operate.

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--G--

GAR. Correct abbreviation for the Grand Army of the Republic.

General Orders. Orders issued by the Commander-in-Chief only (see Department Orders, Camp Orders, Special Orders).

Gopher. See Order of the Gopher.

Grand Army of the Republic. An association of veterans of the Union Forces of the Civil War formed in 1866. Membership was open only to men who had fought in the Civil War in one of the Union forces and as a result, when the last member died in 1956 the Grand Army of the Republic ceased to exist. The Allied Orders of the Grand Army of the Republic were formed to keep green the memory of the men of the Grand Army of the Republic. The Grand Army of the Republic was made up of men who served in federal service in the Army, Navy or Marine Corps. There was at least one woman member of the Grand Army of the Republic.

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--H--

Honorary Member. A person who is unable to meet the criteria of membership as defined in the Federal Charter in the U. S. Code but whose contributions to the missions of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War are significant enough to have been so named by the Commander-in-Chief, with the approval of Council of Administration. Honorary Members wear the membership badge of the order suspended from a blue ribbon upon which is affixed a one half inch gold star.

Honors. The titles of Past Commander-in-Chief, Past Department Commander and Past Camp Commander (or Past National President, Past Department President and Past President) grantedto an individual upon completion of a period of service to the Order. As each junior level is required to gain the next senior level, only the most senior honor is appended to a person's name. On formal occasions, honored persons may wear the Past Commander's badge suspended from a neck-ribbon of the appropriate color (predominantly blue for Camp, red for Department and Gold for Commander-in-Chief).

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--I--

Installation. A process whereby officers are sworn in prior to taking office following an election. Until the installation takes place, all current officers remain in position. An installing officer is appointed by the Department Commander for Camp installations and by the Commander-in-Chief for Department installations. The installing officer is required to report the installation, along with names and addresses of all officers installed to the appropriate secretary (Department for Camps and National for Departments).

Internet Web Address. .

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--J--

Junior. A male associated with the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, six to 14 years of age, who is otherwise eligible for membership as defined the Federal Charter as found in the U.S. Code. Juniors wear the membership badge of the Order suspended from a ribbon which is predominantly white with red and blue stripes on either side (see Member, Associate).

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--K--

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--L--

Ladies of the Grand Army of the Republic. An organization of wives, daughters, mothers and sisters of members of the Grand Army of the Republic. Membership is also open to women who can prove a direct ancestry to a Union veteran of the Civil War. One of the Allied Orders of the Grand Army of the Republic.

LGAR. The correct abbreviation for the Ladies of the Grand Army of the Republic.

Life Member. A Member of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War who has paid the requisite fee to the National Treasurer. Life Members may or may not be assessed Department and Camp fees at the discretion of those organizations. Life Members wear a bar inscribed Life Member on the suspension ribbon of the membership badge.

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--M--

Member. A Member of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War is a male at least 14 years of age who meets the criteria for membership set out in the National Charter and elected to membership by the local Camp. In areas where Departments do not exist, an individual may become a Member as a Member-at-Large. Departments may also maintain a member-at-large Camp. Members wear the membership badge of the Order suspended from a predominantly blue ribbon with red and white stripes on either side (see Associate, Junior).

Memorial Day. May 30th of each year as directed by Grand Army of the Republic Commander-in-Chief John Logan in General Order No. 11. Each brother swears an obligation to always remember this day and pay tribute to the men of the Grand Army of the Republic. Brothers are also encouraged to participate in the Congressionally-mandated celebration of Memorial Day until this injustice can be corrected.

Meritorious Service Award. A recognition of especially meritorious service by the Commander-in-Chief. If the service is considered sufficient to merit the recognition and upon the approval of the Council of Administration, the cited Member may wear a one half inch gold star on the suspension ribbon of any approved badge.

Military Affairs Committee. A committee of the National Encampment charged with overseeing the function of the Sons of Veterans Reserve.

Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States. An organization created in 1865 of Union officers and former Unoin officers of the Civil War and now composed of hereditary society of men whose ancestors served as an officer in the Union forces during the Civil War.

Military Order of the Stars and Bars. An honorary/hereditary society within the Sons of Confederate Veterans of the Civil War composed of descendents of Confederate Officers.

Miniature Medals. Miniature copies of the membership badge with suspension ribbons of the National, Department and Camp, for wear on formal occasions. Miniature and regular size medals should not be mixed. Award of the War Medal is represented by a palm branch on the suspension ribbon of miniature medals.

MOLLUS. Correct abbreviation for the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States.

MOS&B. Correct abbreviation for the Military Order of the Stars and Bars.

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--N--

National President. The senior elected officer of the Woman's Relief Corps, Ladies of the Grand Army of the Republic, Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War, or Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

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--O--

Order. As used in this glossary, a term that is synonymous with the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. May also be used with any of the other Allied Order of the Grand Army of the Republic.

Order of the Gopher. A society within the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, now extinct, about which little is now known.

Orders. Instructions issued at all levels within the SUVCW to provide information, direct action and execute discipline (see General Orders, Department Orders, Camp Orders, Special Orders).

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--P--

PCC. Correct abbreviation for the honor of Past Camp Commander. Listed after the name of a man who has served as Camp Commander for a full term or who has completed an unexpired term or who has served as Camp Secretary or Camp Treasurer for 10 years and has been granted the honor by the Department Encampment.

PC-in-C. Correct abbreviation for the honor of Past Commander-in-Chief. Listed after the name of a man who has served as Commander-in-Chief for a full term or who has completed an unexpired term.

PDC. Correct abbreviation for the honor of Past Department Commander. Listed after the name of a man who has served as Department Commander for a full term or who has completed an unexpired term or who has served as Department Secretary for 10 consecutive years and has been granted the honor by a National Encampment.

PDP. Correct abbreviation for the honor of Past Department President of the ASUVCW, WRC, LGAR or DUVCW.

PNP. Correct abbreviation for the honor of Past National President of the ASUVCW, WRC, LGAR or DUVCW.

PP. Correct abbreviation for the honor of Past President of an Auxiliary, Tent, Circle or Corps of one of the female Orders of the Allied Orders of the Grand Army of the Republic.

Proceedings. The official record of a National Encampment.

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--Q--

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--R--

Regulations. The rules under which the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War operates. Based upon and expanding the federal charter as found in the U. S. Code and the Order's Constitution.

Ritual. A series of exercises for opening, closing and operating the meetings and Encampments of the Order. These exercises have been handed down from the Grand Army of the Republic based upon the ritualistic work of its meetings and are optional at all levels within the Order. They are described in the publication Rituals and Ceremonials which is available from the National Quartermaster and are made an attachment to the Regulations of the Order.

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--S--

SCV. The correct abbreviation for the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

Sons of Confederate Veterans. An organization of male descendants of Confederate Veterans in the Civil War.

Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. A patriotic and educational organization, similar to the Grand Army of the Republic. It was founded on November 12, 1881 and incorporated by Act of Congress August 20, 1954. The Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War is the legal heir to and representative of the Grand Army of the Republic.

Sons of Veterans Reserve. An subentity of the SUVCW consisting of Members and Associates of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War who have formed into Civil War-period units for the purpose of providing a ceremonial and historically accurate portrayal of their ancestors. Their organization is commanded by a Commanding Officer who is appointed by the National Military Affairs Committee, with the concurrence of the Commander-in-Chief. It operates as the Military Department of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

Special Orders. Orders issued at all levels of command within the SUVCW to announce special events, memorials or other activities (see General Orders, Department Orders, Camp Orders).

SUVCW. The correct abbreviation for Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

SV. The correct abbreviation for Sons of Veterans of the United States of America, predecessor organization to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

SVR. The correct abbreviation for the Sons of Veterans Reserve.

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--T--

Tent. A local unit of the Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Generally preceded by a name and followed by a number.

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--U--

United Daughters of the Confederacy. A group of women united to preserve the memory of their Confederate Civil War ancestors.

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--V--

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--W--

War Medal. A medal of the Order which is awarded to any Brother (Member or Associate) who has served in the Armed Forces of the United States during time of war. Eligibility for the award is based upon the dates as approved by the Order and approval is granted at the Camp level. Orders to the National Quartermaster for the War Medal must be accompanied by an approved form signed by officers of the Camp. A metal bar with the name of the conflict in which the brother served is affixed to the suspension ribbon of the medal. The War Medal must be worn with an approved Membership Badge.

Woman's Relief Corps, Official Auxiliary to the Grand Army of the Republic. Membership is open to all loyal womanhood without regard for ancestry. Generally referred to as the Woman's Relief Corps. One of the Allied Orders of the Grand Army of the Republic.

WRC. Abbreviation for the Woman's Relief Corps.

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--Y--

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--Z--


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