The main purpose of UAFA is to service a collection of enrolled families, each normally headed by a patriarch or matriarch, who lived at or about the time of the American Revolution. The collection, organization, preservation and sharing of information and artifacts about these families is so central to the mission of our Association.
While the enrolled families project is treated in a unique way, a number of additional activities are visualized to complete the palette of UAFA projects. Some of these are especially designed to support enrolled families, but may have meaning for family history researchers at large and even for history researchers in general. Additionally, some projects are planned that fall under the overall array of activities contemplated by the UAFA mission statement.
The following is a list of actual and aspirational projects contemplated at present. Each of these will be brought to fruition as resources and the interests of members dictate. Over time, experience will teach us how much emphasis should be devoted to a given project and should lead us to bringing more projects under consideration.
Project 1: Websites
At present, the principal website for UAFA is www.alliedfamilies.com. As our Association moves through its early years, the site will continue to evolve. Associated with this website will be a separate but linked resource base where large amounts of information will be posted.
UAFA currently has use of the website www.upchurchstory.com which is maintained by Robert Phillip Upchurch. At an appropriate time, this website will be transferred to UAFA.
Project 2: Enrolled Families – Please see the Enrolled Families tab.
Project 3: The Collection
The current core of the UAFA Collection consists of the entire collection assembled by Robert Phillip Upchurch over the last forty years. The collection is on loan to UAFA and when appropriate, it will be transferred legally to UAFA. Currently, it resides in the UAFA headquarters, Allied Families Research Center, at 173 Long Road in Chesterfield, MO. The collection consists of many facets, including about 200 family history and related books, photos, census records, numerous maps and manuscripts, files based on cemeteries, organizations, geography, chronology, and special family history subjects. Of special value are Biofiles on about 400,000 individuals from Upchurch and allied families who lived in enclaves in various states.
With the advent of UAFA, it is contemplated that the aforementioned collection will have added a digitized, online resource base component, created largely to provide supplementary information on enrolled families. Additionally, enrolled families will be linked to Internet sources greatly expanding the scope of UAFA resources.
As soon as it is feasible, a detailed inventory of the accessions in the UAFA Collection will be created and placed online. For more details on the holdings and accessions to the collection, please contact our headquarters.
Contributions of books, manuscripts, maps, artifacts and the like are sought for the UAFA Collection. Individuals willing to contribute materials are invited to enter into negotiations with UAFA. Details on the UAFA Collection Policy are available on request.
Project 4: Membership Retention and Recruitment
The lifeblood of UAFA will be the maintenance of a robust membership. The prospect of having 100 members by the end of 2014 is very good. To sustain the organization long term, a target of 250 members each year is considered necessary and attainable. UAFA will each year use a variety of techniques in the Membership, Retention, and Recruitment Project. This will involve the conventional tools of notification, e-newsletters, and social media such as Facebook. Volunteers with time and appropriate skills are invited to assist in this project. For a current list of members, please contact our headquarters.
Project 5: The Establishment of a Physical Facility in Wake Co., NC
For the time being, the UAFA headquarters, Allied Families Research Center, in Chesterfield, MO provides an interim physical facility to house the UAFA Collection. However, given that a considerable number of American families trace their heritage to North Carolina and given that the present core of the UAFA Collection relates to Central North Carolina, it is reasonable to establish a physical site for UAFA in the Raleigh area, Wake County, NC. This facility would ultimately provide a permanent site for the UAFA Collection. It would also accommodate artifacts, constituting a museum, and provide a space for volunteers to work. For those interested in access to the UAFA Collection, there would be work space for using the collection under supervision.
One would hope for space to be contributed on a temporary or permanent basis. Renting for a time would be an option. Donations to get the project underway will be sought. At some point, a plan will be developed to create a permanent fund or endowment to assure the acquisition and continued existence and operation of the UAFA Family Center and Museum. As the facility becomes a reality, it will be imperative to have volunteers to help make the operation productive.
Project 6: Endowment Project
The vision for UAFA is that it will continually augment its program of work, including ongoing upgrading of family records and making them available physically and online for the long term. To insure that this vision is realized and sustained, it is imperative that long term support funds be established, the earnings of which will be used to support program activity. Major efforts will be made to create endowments to support individual enrolled families and the overall operation of UAFA and special projects.
From time to time, appeals for endowment contributions will be made to all members and friends or to special groups, such as members of a particular enrolled family. Since UAFA has a 501(c) 3 status, donations are tax-exempt to the extent allowed by law. UAFA encourages supporters to reference the Association in their estate plans. Inquiries about setting up charitable reminder trusts will be welcomed. For the status of the Endowment Project and for details on options to contribute, please contact our headquarters.
Project 7: Publications
In early 2015, UAFA will initiate a publication to report on activities for the previous year and to include some scholarly aspects of family history. At present, one such topic will be a description of prominent streams of family movement in the United States in the 1700-1900 era. The tentative title of the publication is “Footprints of American Allied Families.” Over time, more than one issue per year is contemplated. Access to this publication will be a UAFA membership benefit.
UAFA is inheriting the publication Upchurch Bulletin from Robert Phillip Upchurch, who has produced the publication since 1980. Volume 35 will be produced in 2014 by UAFA in support of Upchurch and Allied Families. Access to this publication is a UAFA membership benefit.
UAFA will initiate a series of periodic e-newsletters to serve the purposes of the association. An overall e-newsletter will go to members and several hundred additional contacts. Separate e-newsletters will serve each enrolled family. All e-newsletters will be archived and made available to the public in a searchable format. For e-newsletters for enrolled families, see details on the respective enrolled families.
Additional projects may be added over time based on membership interest and feasibility. Some activities contemplated are a Cemetery Preservation Project, a DNA Project, and a Reunion Support Project. Ideas for projects are invited from members, along with an indication of willingness to provide volunteer time and/or finances to support particular projects.