The American Legion
The American Legion was chartered by Congress in 1919 as a patriotic, mutual-help, war-time veterans organization. It was founded on four pillars, giving rise to four main program / service areas: 1) Veterans Affairs & Rehabilitation, 2) National Security, 3) Americanism, and 4) Children & Youth.
Today, the American Legion is a prominent veterans and community-service organization, which now numbers nearly 3 million members -- men and women -- in roughly 14,000 American Legion Posts worldwide. These Posts are organized into 55 Departments -- one each for the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, France, Mexico, and the Philippines. (Go to the Minnesota Department web site.)
The purpose of each of the American Legion's members can best be summarized by the American Legion Preamble to the Constitution:
FOR GOD AND COUNTRY WE ASSOCIATE OURSELVES TOGETHER FOR THE FOLLOWING PURPOSES:
To uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America;
To maintain law and order;
To foster and perpetuate a one hundred percent Americanism;
To preserve the memories and incidents of our associations in the Great Wars;
To inculcate a sense of individual obligation to the community, state and nation;
To combat the autocracy of both the classes and the masses;
To make right the master of might;
To promote peace and goodwill on earth;
To safeguard and transmit to posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy;
To consecrate and sanctify our comradeship by our devotion to mutual helpfulness.
The American Legion's national headquarters is in Indianapolis, Indiana, with additional offices in Washington, DC. In addition to thousands of volunteers serving in leadership and program implementation capacities in local communities, as well as the Legion's standing national commissions and committees, the national organization has a staff of about 300 employees.
Membership eligibility in The American Legion is based upon honorable active-duty service with the U.S. Armed Forces, anywhere in the world, during the following periods:
|April 6, 1917 to November 11, 1918||(World War I)|
|December 7, 1941 to December 31, 1946||(World War II)|
|June 25, 1950 to January 31, 1955||(Korean War)|
|February 28, 1961 to May 7, 1975||(Vietnam War)|
|August 24, 1982 to July 31, 1984||(Lebanon/Grenada)|
|December 20, 1989 to January 31, 1990||(Operation Just Cause - Panama)|
|*August 2, 1990 to today||(Gulf War / War on Terrorism)|
|*Because eligibility dates remain open, all members of the U.S. Armed Forces are eligible to join The American Legion at this time, until the date of the end of hostilities as determined by the government of the United States.|
|U.S. Merchant Marine eligible only from Dec. 7, 1941 to Aug. 16, 1945.|
(Source: United States American Legion, September, 2000)
For information on membership in the Tri-City American Legion, go to our membership info page.
The American Legion Auxiliary
In this world of ours, the American Legion Auxiliary shines as an example of unselfish giving. With almost a million members from all walks of life, the Auxiliary administers hundreds of volunteer programs, gives tens of thousands of hours to its communities and to veterans, and raises millions of dollars to support its own programs as well as other worthwhile charities familiar to most Americans. It is all accomplished with volunteers.
The Auxiliary is much more than the name implies. The organization has achieved its own unique identity, while working side-by-side with the veterans who are members of The American Legion. Like the Legion, the Auxiliary's interests have broadened to encompass the entire community. Through Units located in every state and in some foreign countries, the Auxiliary embodies the spirit of America that has prevailed through war and peace. It is as solidly behind America today -- just as it was when founded in 1920.
In 1919, at the very first National Convention of The American Legion, it was agreed that the organization's purpose could not be properly served without the aid and dedication of each member's family. Membership in the Auxiliary is thus open to Legionnaires' wives, mothers, daughters, sisters, granddaughters and grandmothers, as well as to female descendants of deceased veterans who served during the eligible periods. There are two membership categories -- Junior (under age 18) and Senior membership.
Today, the Auxiliary is recognized as the most influential patriotic women's organization in the world, and its mission has remained the same -- to join hands with The American Legion in serving God and Country as a family.
For more information about the American Legion Auxiliary, visit the Auxiliary's National Web Site. For information on membership in Tri-City's Auxiliary, click here, or send an e-mail to Tri-City.
Sons of the American Legion
The Sons of The American Legion (SAL) was established in 1932 in Portland, Oregon. Since then, the SAL has worked hand-in-hand witth The American Legion with its programs and activities. The American Legion, the Sons of The American Legion, and the American Legion Auxiliary form the "Legion Family," which boasts a combined total membership of nearly 4.2 million members.
Membership in the Sons of the American Legion is open to all male descendants, adopted sons, and stepsons of U.S. military veterans who served during the eligibility periods. Legionnaires may hold dual membership in both The American Legion and the SAL. Since the eligibility age for SAL membership actually begins with date of birth, activities and programs are sometimes organized by age groups within squadrons.
SALs main mission is to strengthen the Four Pillars of The American Legion. Therefore, squadrons campaigns place an emphasis on preserving American traditions and values, improving the quality of life for our nations children, caring for veterans and their families, and teaching the fundamentals of good citizenship
As an example, the SAL has a study program (recommended for, but not limited to, younger members) called The Ten Ideals, which includes: patriotism, health, knowledge, training, honor, faith, helpfulness, courtesy, reverence, and comradeship. Once completed, members may continue with the Five-Point Program of Service, covering patriotism, citizenship, discipline, leadership, and legionism.
SAL members work together with Legionnaires to promote a wide variety of programs, including assissting local Posts with veterans programs, VA home and hospital volunteer service, children & youth activities, and fund raising. In fact, the SAL has raised well over a million dollars for the American Legion Child Welfare Foundation. In addition, the SAL is one of the organizations that make up the Citizens Flag Alliance, a coalition formed to secure Flag protection legislation through an amendment to the U.S. Constitution. SAL volunteers work to distribute information pertaining to the importance of Flag display and respect, and they participate in Flag education programs in schools and other local organizations.
More information can be obtained by visiting the National SAL Web Site. For information on membership in Tri-City's SAL squadron, please click here.
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|If you have questions or need additional information about any Tri-City Legion programs or services, e-mail Tri-City Legion at email@example.com.|
Last updated: 2/24/11
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