Twyla Warren, who with her husband Chris and daughter Abbie regularly attend Civil War reenactments and provide educational programming locally, has been given the Laura Miller Award, said to be the highest honor from National Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.
On Sept. 11, at its monthly meeting, the Louisa Volker Auxiliary #215 of Missouri was surprised with a special visit from past national president Allison Pollitt, who conferred the special award.
“Sister Twyla Warren has performed her duties as a truly devoted member of the organization in an exemplary manner since joining 15 years ago,” Pollitt said, before elaborating on Warren’s participation in numerous parades, Civil War soldiers’ gravestone dedications, school presentations, history programs, the effort to form the Louisa Volker Auxiliary, her recruitment of many members, her maintenance of the group’s Facebook page, and much more.
Pollitt also explained the background of the award’s namesake, Laura Florence Martin Miller, daughter of a Civil War veteran, David Martin of the 122nd PA Volunteers, who had fought in the battles of Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville. At the age of 19, Miller began to start and lead several Ladies Aid Societies in Eastern Pennsylvania (ladies auxiliaries for Civil War veterans groups). By the time she was 21, she became the National Provisional President of these groups, which included 72 local auxiliaries and a membership of over 6,000 throughout 15 different states, including Missouri.
These Ladies Aid Societies quickly became the auxiliary to the Sons of Veterans of the U.S.A., which would later become the auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War (ASUVCW), the legal successor of the Civil War soldiers’ veterans organization known as the Grand Army of the Republic, or GAR.
In 2019, the ASUVCW created two national awards – the Laura Miller Award for an outstanding sister and the Major Augustus P. Davis Award for an outstanding brother of the ASUVCW.
Warren would be one of the very few to receive this national award and high honor, her husband Chris having received the Maj. A.P. Davis Award in 2021 from this same organization.
After Pollitt’s speech, she gave Warren the very special pin to place upon her Past President’s Medal, a certificate, and the letter of recognition, as well as a heartfelt hug and “thank you” for all of Warren’s service.
The Louisa Volker Auxiliary #215 and their brothers in the Thomas C. Fletcher Camp #47 gave Warren a heartfelt round of applause and many congratulations. Warren’s daughter Abbie, a junior-member of the auxiliary, leaped from her seat and hugged her mother, as well. A humble and almost speechless Warren graciously thanked everyone.