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Post 298  Marion, Iowa

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ABOUT THIS POST

CHARTER DATE: November 24, 1919

FIRST COMMANDER:

A. R. McElwain

NOTABLE MEMBERS:

Signatures on the Application for Temporary Charter, dated 21 October, 1919 were:

Robert T. Hibner
Carl A. Skedin
Raplh J. WilliamsRead more »

WHAT MAKES OUR POST UNIQUE:

Our claim to fame is that we have every flag pole ring from every convention.  Pictures are in a folder named Flag Pole Rings.  Note that rings were not made during WWII.

On October 21, 1919 Application For Post of American.. Read more »

Jump to a decade in the timeline:

1910  1920  1930  1940  1950  1960  1970  1980  1990  2000  2010  

1910

 

Having immediately received a blizzard of acceptances to attend the opening of the "Liberty League Caucus", as he had begun to refer to it, Temporary Secretary Eric Fisher Wood began to search for use of a room of sufficient size to contain the gathering. The Cirque de Paris had been retained, a large, multisided amphitheater sufficient to accommodate a crowd of about 2,000. Delegates began to assemble from all over France. The 10:00 am.. Full story »

 

The Paris Caucus in March was by its nature limited to soldiers of the AEF who remained in Europe; a parallel organizational meeting for those who had returned to the American preparatory to a formal organizational convention was deemed necessary. This was a conclave dominated by the presence of Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., who called the convention to order amidst mass chanting akin to that of a Presidential nominating convention—"We Want Ted-dy! We Want Ted-dy!"

A minor crisis followed when Roosevelt twice declined nomination for permanent chairman of the session, to the consternation of many.. Full story »

May 12, 1919

 The American Legion Department of Iowa began accepting applications for post charters on May 12, 1919. As in many American Legion departments, it was determined that the post whose charter was approved the earliest would be Post 1.

 Thus was staged the great race between Council Bluffs and Spencer.

 At the stroke of midnight, 15 charter Legionnaires of each city signed the application form, had it notarized and sped off to Des Moines. The Spencer veterans set out in a Ford car, hoping they would get to Des Moines ahead of the.. Full story »

 

Hundreds of thousands of African-Americans were in segregated units in World War I, mostly assigned to non-combat duties. The early American Legion left the question of integration, the formation of segregated "Negro" posts, or exclusion of black soldiers from membership altogether up to the states and the posts themselves, often resulting in gross disparities of opportunity.

The formal founding convention was held in Minneapolis, Minnesota from November 10 to 12, 1919. It was attended by 684 delegates from around the United States.

From the outset The American Legion maintained a strictly nonpartisan orientation towards electoral politics. The group wrote.. Full story »

On November 19, 1919 forty former servicemen met at the WRC hall in Marion. Allen McElwain was in charge of the meeting. A constitution and by-laws were drawn up and $12.00 a year was charged for expenses.

Minutes of many years meetings, starting with this one, have been found.  Several pages are in the "Some about Post 298" Gallery

Full story »
From 1919 to 1921 A. R. McElwain was elected as Commander Full story »

On November 24th a Charter was granted with 14 members. In the minutes of the meetings a decision to not name the post was made, so the Post became “The American Legion Post #298” in the Department of Iowa. However, close examination of this document shows the controversy was not complete as in the upper portion it says Wm Penn Post you can see that had been scratched and MARION was written in. What a.. Full story »

120 wives attended a meeting on December 7th, with interest to starting an Auxiliary Unit to the Post. They purchased the first American Flag for the Post.

Full story »
The Memorial Hall was built in 1899 for the Robert Mitchell No. 126 Women’s Relief Corps. The Marion Post used this building for their meetings from 1919 to 1921. Full story »
1920
August 1st, 1920 the Charter was signed by the National Commander. In September the Post held their first annual street carnival in Marion Full story »
In 1921 the first Post Home was purchased. The old Dearborn Hotel was purchased for $9,500. Later an additional $10,000 was spent remodeling the Hotel. The Dearborn Hotel was built in about 1902. In 1917 the name was changed to the O’Heron Hotel. Later the name was changed to the New Dearborn Hotel. It was purchased by the American Legion in 1921. Full story »

1921 – Hanford MacNider of Mason City, Iowa, a highly decorated combat officer of the American Expeditionary Forces and veteran of the Pancho Villa expedition, is elected national commander of The American Legion at it's third National Convention held in Kansas City, Missouri. He lead a cross-country victory tour for Supreme Allied Commander Marshal Ferdinand Foch of France. MacNider would go on to serve as assistant secretary of war under President Calvin Coolidge, as U.S... Full story »

April 28, 1922 the Auxiliary Unit was chartered with 63 members and 5 Gold Star Mothers. Full story »
In 1923 the Post purchased two Bingo stands at the Marion Fairgrounds {now the Indian Creek Club} and used the stands for the street carnival Bingo. A new Ford car was raffled on the 4th of July. A game hunt and dinner was held later this year. Full story »

Calling themselves the “Second American Expeditionary Force,” 20,000 men and women of The American Legion and Auxiliary journeyed to France in September 1927 for the Legion’s 9th National Convention.

The conventioneers frolicked at Coney Island, New York, before sailing across the Atlantic on board the steamship Leviathan. Gen. John J. Pershing accompanied National Commander Howard P. Savage on the voyage. In Paris, both men – along with many other distinguished Legion guests – attended a dinner.. Full story »

1930
In 1930 the athletic park was purchased and plans were completed for a swimming pool. The Auxiliary helped by purchasing stock each year for expenses, they later gave all the stock to the Post as a gift. The pool was dedicated Aug. 30th. with a cost of about $30,000. Many hours were spent each year getting the pool ready, cleaning and closing it at the end of the season. The pool was 17,000 sq. ft. in size; an addition was added in 1957, making the pool 22,000 sq ft. The post took over sponsorship of a Boy Scout Troop and.. Full story »
A.R.McElwain elected as Second District Commander Full story »

In 1938, in reaction to an article where another post claimed to have all the rings and doubted any other post in the country did, this article was published in the local Newspaper.

More Flag Pole Ring information is with the gallery entitled Flag Pole Rings

Full story »
1940
In 1940 the post paid off their mortgage on the building, burned the mortgage and celebrated with their wives at a dance. The post become very active in civic affairs, community services, rehabilitation of veterans in hospitals and homes, carnivals, county fairs, corn festivals, corn husking, old settlers, parades, etc. Full story »
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