Post 1 Lake Charles, Louisiana

Post 1

Lake Charles, Louisiana

Post 1 Lake Charles, Louisiana

About This Post

Post Namesake

W.B. Williamson

What Makes this Post Unique

Our Legionnaires participate in many community activities such as parades, memorials, dedications, etc. We sponsor youth programs dedicated to leadership development such as United States Naval Sea Cadet Corps, LaGrange High School NJROTC and Boys' Scouts of America.



First meeting

Oct 1920

In 1920, 45 individuals met in an auditorium in Lake Charles, elected leaders, and decided to file a certificate of application for a charter. Their decision was to put the plan into effect as soon as 100 former soldiers signed their petition. They completed this within the year.

Brett Eddy was the first elected Commander of Post 1.

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Post Charter

Post Charter

Jun 15, 1931
The property was donated by Mathilda Grey Estates for the sole purpose of it's use as an American Legion post home.
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Donation of property for American Legion home

Oct 1947

From the inception of the American Legion in Lake Charles through the late 1940's, the members met at different locations throughout the city. Matilda Geddings Gray, a local philanthropist, rancher and farmer wanted to "insure that a large group of people should benefit from a memorial," to honor her late brother, Henry Gray. Henry was a veteran of WWI, a member of the post and a prominent oilman and cattleman in Southwest Louisiana.

It was at..

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Donation of property for American Legion home

Matilda Gray monetary donation

Oct 1948

In 1948, Mrs. Matilda Gray donated the entire profit from her rice crop to the American Legion for the construction of a permanent home for the American Legion in Lake Charles. This donation was in the amount of $30,000.

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Contract for construction of Post 1 building

Dec 1949

In December of 1949, after receiving bids, a contract for $74,819 was signed with Knapp and East of Lake Charles. The completion date was to be 6 months.

The building proper was designed for expansion. Included in the original building was a colonial front (as it is today), a driveway winding beneath a car port, lounge, dining room, kitchen, auditorium, gym and offices for legion personnel.

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Post 1 renovations

Oct 1964

Mrs. Matilda Gray once again contributed to enlarge and rehabilitate the home. The auditoruim was updated to seat 500 people and a new stage and terrazzo floors were added. Other additions were kitchen conveniences, storage space, trophy and souvenier cases and a new air conditioning system.

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