18 July 1919 (Friday)
THE AMERICAN LEGION HERE
On Monday evening about thirty service men and women met in the Haines Building for the purpose of organizing a local Post of The American Legion. The charter which had already been secured made immediate organization possible. Temporary officers were elected and committees were appointed to draw up by-laws and establish quarters for the post.
They are: President, Norman Smith; vice-president, David Kern; secretary, Owen E. Owens; treasurer, Albert Schertzinger; allotment and post-employment officer, Paul Schertzinger; committee on by-laws, finance, rules and regulations, Roscoe Berlin, William Sourwine and Lawrence Haines. The next meeting will again be held in the Haines Building next Tuesday evening at eight o'clock. All service men and women of Slatington and vicinity are urged to attend.
The American Legion is the organization of American veterans of the World War. It is similar in general character to the Grand Army of the Republic or the United Confederate Veterans and is composed of all parties, all creeds, and all ranks who wish to perpetuate the relationships formed while in the military service. It is non-partisan and non-political. It is a civilian organization--not military or militaristic. It makes no distinction of rank and no distinctions between overseas men and men who did not get overseas. All soldiers, sailors, or marines who served honorably between April 6, 1917, and November 11, 1918, and all women who were regularly enlisted or commissioned in the army, navy or marine corps are eligible for membership.
The Legion was first organized in Paris by a thousand officers and men, delegates from all the units of the A. E. F. to an organization meeting, which adopted a tentative constitution and selected the name “American Legion." The action of the Paris meeting was confirmed and endorsed by a similar meeting held in St. Louis, where the Legion was formally recognized by the troops who served in the United States. These two organizations are not separate. The executive committees have amalgamated and are now the operating body of the Legion.
At the St. Louis meeting resolutions were passed which develop some of the ideals of the Legion. Among those passed were resolutions endorsing the Victory Liberty Loan; condemning the action of those responsible for protecting conscientious objectors; and condemning the I. W. W's. International Socialists, and Anarchists, and demanding an investigation by Congress; recommending action to prevent misuse of the uniform; urging the adoption of legislation for reclamation of lands; supporting the policy of giving preference to ex-service men for re-employment; urging action by Congress to place upon an equal basis all officers and enlisted personnel who served during the war with no preference of the regular officer as against the officer who came from civil life; and recommending action toward the conservation of the rights of men under the War Risk Insurance Act.
Reported in the Slatington News, 18 July 1919