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Maryland Society, Sons of the  American Revolution

Christopher T. Smithson

MDSSAR President 2023-2024


Christopher T. Smithson, a native of Maryland, son of past State President William P. Smithson and Carol A. Davis. He served as the 1st Vice President from 2022 to 2023; 2nd Vice President from 2021 to 2022 and Registrar, Maryland Society of the Sons of the American Revolution from 2018 to 2021. He’s been a member of the Maryland Society Sons of the American Revolution since 1998. He joined at age 18 after transferring from the Col. Thomas Hartley Society, National Society Children of the American Revolution. Chris went on to serve as the President of the Col. Aquila Hall Chapter at the age of 20 being the youngest at the time to serve in this role. He went on to serve as President of the chapter another four times. He has sponsored over 300 members over the years. Three times awarded Florence Kendall SAR Membership National Award for the largest number of new members in one year. He is an active member of the Maryland Society Color Guard since 2000.

Besides his duties with the SAR, he currently serves as Treasurer and Genealogist General of the Hereditary Order of the Signers of the Bush Declaration; Corresponding Secretary of the Society of the War of 1812 in the State of Maryland; Sr. Society Registrar, Bush Declaration Society, National Society Children of the American Revolution which he organized and founded in 2002; Sr. State Registrar of the Maryland Society Children of the War of 1812; Sr. Registrar General of the National Society Children of 1812 and Assistant Postmaster General of the Hereditary Order of the Families of Presidents & First Ladies of America where he is the editor of Executive Dairy.

In 2004 he co-founded the Hereditary Order of the Signers of the Bush Declaration and served as the first President General of the order. Chris also holds memberships in Order of the Crown of Charlemagne, Order of the Merovingian Dynasty, Order of the First Families of Maryland, the Hereditary Order of the Families of Presidents & First Ladies of America and the National Gavel Society.

He has been doing genealogy research for over 30 years specializes in Harford County, Baltimore County and Baltimore City, and Cecil County, Maryland from the Colonial to 21st Century, documentation retrieval, brick wall ancestors, patriotic and hereditary lineage research, and missing heirs research as well as African American research. Conducts research at the Maryland State Archives, and the Maryland Historical Society. Chris gives genealogical lectures for the Historical Society of Harford County and is an author of seven books.

Featured in the journal of “American Psychologist” for solving the mystery of “Little Albert.” In 2019 presented with the Historic Preservation Recognition Award for Excellent volunteer work in Historic Preservation by the Harbor of Grace Chapter, NSDAR.

Daniel J. Earnshaw, Esq.

MDSSAR 2nd Vice-President 2023-2024


Dan was born and raised in Baltimore, and is a 41 year member of the Maryland Society, Sons of the American Revolution. He obtained his law degree from the University of Baltimore, established his own practice, and retired after 32 years engaging in the profession. He completed R.O.T.C. at Johns Hopkins University and served in the Maryland Army National Guard. Dan has also served in various capacities, in the Maryland Sons and Daughters of Pilgrims, Society of the War of 1812 and the Mayflower Society where he is currently serving as the Governor of the Mayflower Society of Maryland. He currently resides in Havre de Grace, Maryland and enjoys travel, genealogy and boating.

J. D. Urbach

MDSSAR 1st Vice-President 2023-2024


J.D. Urbach is a Baltimore County native admitted to the Maryland Society in 2012 by descent from Patriot Joseph Wallen, a private in the Militia of Montgomery County, Virginia 1777 and Joseph’s father Patriot Elisha Wallen, the longhunter, who provided patriotic service and was an early pioneer of Tennessee and Kentucky.

Vice President Urbach is a Past President of the Col. Nicholas Ruxton Moore Chapter (2020-2022) and active member of both the Maryland Society and National Society Eagle Scout Committees. J.D. credits his participation in the SAR Eagle Scout contest in 1990 as his impetus for joining the SAR. He is a forty-year veteran of the Boy Scouts of America, active Assistant Scoutmaster and chairman of the Baltimore Area Council Alumni / NESA Committee.

In his community, Compatriot Urbach serves as Board Chair of the Trustees of the Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC) and on the Board of Directors of the Maryland Association of Community Colleges (MACC.) He is President of the Our Lady of Hope / St. Luke School Board and a local board member for the U.S. Selective Service System.

Professionally, J.D. Urbach is a Project Management Professional (PMP)® and Senior Program Manager with Edwards Performance Solutions supporting initiatives at both the State of Maryland and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Over his twenty-five-year career, he has led projects at Lucent Technologies, Laureate Education and McCormick & Company. He received his BA from Drew University and MBA from the Johns Hopkins University.

Vice President Urbach resides in Edgemere, Maryland with his wife, Michele, and their two children.

The Presidential Team

Douglas J. J. Peters

MDSSAR 3rd Vice-President 2023-2024


Douglas J. J. Peters currently serves on both the University of Maryland Board of Regents and as a Board member on the University of Maryland Medical System. He previously served in the Maryland State Senator from 2007 to 2021 where he served as Majority Leader and Chair of Capital Budget. He was a Prince George's County Councilmember from 2002 to 2006 and Bowie City Councilmember from 1998 to 2002. He served as a Captain in the United States Army Reserve (1988-1998), fought in Operation Desert Storm and was awarded the Bronze Star Medal. Peters is a Past Commander of the Bowie American Legion and VFW Posts and Chairman of Metropolitan Archives, a Maryland small business that specializes in storage, scanning and destruction of documents. As a Certified Records Manager (CRM), he also creates records retention schedules. Other activities include Leadership Greater Washington (1997); President of the Prince George’s Chamber of Commerce (2000-2001); and President’s Advisory Committee of the Greater Baltimore Committee. He is a 1985 graduate from the University of Maryland College Park Business School majoring in Finance and 1990 graduate of the University of Baltimore with a Masters of Business Administration. Doug is a lifelong resident of Maryland who has been married for 34 years, has six adult children and 3 grandchildren.

From Left to Right: 2nd VP Daniel J. Earnshaw, Esq. - President Christopher T. Smithson - 1st VP John “JD” Urbach, II (3rd VP Douglas G. G. Peters was unavailable for this picture)

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