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Triennial Meetings

Beginning in 1784, delegates of the Society's constituent branches have gathered at least every three years—except for a few gaps in the nineteenth century—in what are known as Triennial Meetings. The Society's Institution, adopted on May 13, 1783, directs that delegates to the General Society will meet "on the first Monday in May, annually, so long as they shall be necessary, and afterwards, at least once in every three years." The first general meeting convened in Philadelphia on May 4, 1784, and lasted two full weeks.

With one exception, Triennial Meetings were held in Philadelphia until 1851, when President General Henry A. S. Dearborn, in an effort to broaden opportunities for member participation, changed the venue to New York City. Since then, the site and responsibilities for planning the Triennials have rotated among the constituent societies. The Société des Cincinnati de France first hosted the delegates of the American and French branches in Paris in 1959 and again in 1974 and 2001.

A major change in the nature of the Triennial Meetings occurred in 1950, when the Society adopted a resolution limiting the offices of president general and vice president general to no more than two consecutive terms of three years each. Since that time, Triennial Meetings have become more ceremonial and have marked the regular transitions in the leadership—opportunities to express appreciation to outgoing officers and to inaugurate new presidents general and launch new administrations. Triennial Meetings remain an essential aspect of the governance of the modern Society, while preserving its principles and traditions in an unbroken link to its founders.

Triennial &
other general meetings

of the Society of the Cincinnati
since 1784:

  • 1784

    Philadelphia
  • 1787

    Philadelphia
  • 1788

    Philadelphia
  • 1790

    Philadelphia
  • 1791

    Philadelphia
  • 1793

    Philadelphia
  • 1796

    Philadelphia
  • 1799

    Philadelphia
  • 1800

    Philadelphia
  • 1802

    Washington, D.C.
  • 1805

    Philadelphia
  • 1808

    Philadelphia
  • 1811

    No meeting
  • 1812

    Philadelphia
  • 1814

    No meeting
  • 1817

    No meeting
  • 1820

    No meeting
  • 1823

    No meeting
  • 1825

    Philadelphia
  • 1829

    Philadelphia
  • 1832

    Philadelphia
  • 1835

    Philadelphia
  • 1838

    Philadelphia
  • 1839

    Philadelphia
  • 1841

    No meeting
  • 1844

    Philadelphia
  • 1848

    Philadelphia
  • 1851

    New York
  • 1854

    Baltimore
  • 1855

    Charleston
  • 1856

    Trenton
  • 1860

    Philadelphia
  • 1863

    New York
  • 1866

    Trenton
  • 1869

    Baltimore
  • 1872

    Boston
  • 1875

    New York
  • 1878

    Philadelphia
  • 1881

    Charleston
  • 1884

    Princeton
  • 1887

    Newport
  • 1890

    Baltimore
  • 1893

    Boston
  • 1896

    Philadelphia
  • 1899

    New York
  • 1902

    Hartford
  • 1905

    Richmond
  • 1908

    Charleston
  • 1911

    Newport
  • 1914

    Baltimore
  • 1917

    Asheville, N.C.
  • 1920

    Portsmouth, N.H.
  • 1923

    Wilmington, Del.
  • 1926

    Princeton
  • 1929

    Boston
  • 1932

    Philadelphia
  • 1935

    New York
  • 1938

    Hartford
  • 1941

    Richmond
  • 1944

    New York
  • 1947

    Washington, D.C.
  • 1950

    Charleston
  • 1953

    Philadelphia
  • 1956

    Newport
  • 1959

    Paris
  • 1962

    Baltimore
  • 1965

    Boston
  • 1968

    Princeton
  • 1971

    Wilmington, N.C.
  • 1974

    Paris
  • 1976

    Washington, D.C.
  • 1977

    Hartford
  • 1980

    Williamsburg
  • 1983

    West Point and Tarrytown, N.Y.
  • 1986

    Philadelphia
  • 1989

    Savannah
  • 1992

    Baltimore
  • 1995

    Exeter, N.H., and Boston
  • 1998

    Charleston
  • 2001

    Paris
  • 2004

    Newport
  • 2007

    Wilmington, N.C.
  • 2010

    New Haven
  • 2013

    Princeton
  • 2016

    Williamsburg