by Post Historian Orlo Plyter
The first meeting was held Thursday evening, September 25th, 1919. The Post was formed at that time. Dues would be $2.00. A discussion was held on the name of the Post - suggested name was Orbaker Post (Kenneth Orbaker was killed October 19, 1919). Also, four other Williamson men had lost their lives in France. This was tabled. On Thursday, October 9, 1919 it was voted on to name the Post, The Williamson Post #394.
A Mr. Tanner was First Commander, but did not complete his term as he skipped town with someone else's wife. As you can see at the Post home we do not have his picture. Charles Brasser was elected Post Commander, so for all intent and purposes Brasser was the first Post Commander. Minutes do not have anything about the transfer of command. There is a skip of about four months of no minutes.
April 15, 1921
Motion made to have Minstrel show February 2, 1922. Treasurer's balance: $15.59.
November 9, 1922
did not have much action in them, just regular business.
April 14, 1927
Committee was appointed to look into a joint 4th of July Celebration with the Moose Club. County Meeting was held at the Post and they apparently served egg nog. It sounded as if 19 gallons were served according to the minutes.
May 12, 1927
June 16, 1927
November 10, 1927
January 12, 1928
Picture show profit: $9.00. Commander Les Blake made a report about Directory of Town. Motion made to give check for $25.00 for library. Discussion about organizing a Legion Band.
March 8, 1928
Boy Scout Drum Corps making good progress. Post to buy 2 drums for cost of $54.00. Ownership to be retained by Post. Membership was 55. Report on Legion Directory was made, over 800 copies have been sold. 480 families had not ordered yet, so 1200 copies were to be printed. $549 worth of advertising had been sold.
It was decided to hold monthly meetings in July & August. Post to hire someone to paint "Williamson " with arrow pointing to Fireman's Park Field. This will be painted on roofs of business section of town as a guide to planes passing over and point out an emergency field. (Remember this is 1928)
October 11, 1928
Signs on East and West end of town are nearly completed. (We just took them down afew years ago. Worn out, like a lot of us)
November 8, 1928
and Andy Huige gave a report on the trip to The National Conventionat
Antonio, Texas. Our colors and famous Pear Cider Banner were in parade.
(The Banner's in our archives. I will display in Sept.) Some
were missing for 1928.
Reported Library had no room for our War relics. Voted to send Legion Magazine to Library free gratis. Motion made to look into having an aviation field.
February 14, 1929
Airport Committee working. Discussed giving flags to the schools.
March 14, 1929
Motion to get in touch with Rotary to promote Boys Week. (We used to work with Rotary on many things.) Buck DeReu served a good chicken dinner. Aviation Committee still working.
April 11, 1929
Legion and Rotary to entertain boys to a movie and lunch on May 3. Nothing on Aviation.
June 13, 1929
Prize Fight tabled to next meeting. Committee to look into fight.
September 12, 1929
Aviation Committee tabled until next meeting. Looked into having another talent show. Two teams appointed to put on Membership drive. Losers to put on feed. (Post did this for years.)
October 10, 1929
Talent Show to be put on November 22 & 23. Aviation Committee: short talk given on aviation situation. It would cost $5,000 to buy Hollis Johnson property. Would sell Stocks or Bonds. Post voted 18 for, 2 against, 8 not voting. Finance report stated Post financially embarrassed to extent of $40.15. (How about that, Herb!) Post established a Board of Trustees. They may spend up to $25 without Post approval. (Those were the days.)
November 14, 1929
Aviation: Proceeding with idea for landing field. Will talk to Fireman about Park. (Johnson property adjoined the Park.) Post to investigate a Rifle Club.
December 12, 1929
Talent Play showed a profit of $208.33. Turkey Raffle netted $148.76. Aviation: lease agreement drawn up between Post and Fireman for Landing Field. Membership showed 63 members. Legion to contact Fireman about having an Ice Skating Rink at Fireman's Park.
Historians Note: I hope as you read these minutes, you will note that things haven't changed much in the operation of the Post. The WWI boys were always trying to do something for the Community even though finances weren't good.
January 8, 1930
Committee on possible Rifle Club reported that this Club may not be desirable for the Post. Investigation to continue. Christmas baskets were given to two legionnaire's families in need. Suggested in future years that we cooperate with the Rotary Club on these endeavors.
The following is the actual report from the minutes...
"Skating Rink: It is reported that a June thaw met the Ice Brigade as they went into action and the June thaw won. Incidentally the Town Water Commission refused to furnish any water for the Rink. Motion: Moved that the Skating Rink proposition be abandoned. Carried. Aviation Committee: Comrade reported that the Legion expects to form a Corporation and sell stock in the amount of $7000. The land to be owned by the Corporation and leased to the Legion."
There seemed to be favorable sentiment in town for this and having the Legion sponsoring the aviation field. Eventually the Legion would repurchase the stock through proceeds derived from Field Days, etc.. In time this would give the Legion complete control of the field. Voted to try a Prize fight to raise money. Motion made and carried to buy 1,000 copies of the Flag Code for free distribution to the public. Request was made for a donation to the National Chaplain's Traveling Fund. Post donated $13.
January 30, 1930
Special meeting called
Twenty-three members present. Purpose of meeting was to discuss whether or not the Post should donated rooms to the State a particular day per month so the State Industrial Commission could hold Compensation Claims Court here. Post voted to do so as a community service benefit. Some discussion was had concerning the athletic event the Post plans to hold at the Star Theater on February 10. It decided reserved seats will be $1.00 and general admission will be $.50. Two sets of eight ounce boxing gloves will be purchased. This event will consist of 5 bouts with a total of 22 rounds. (This sounds great; I can't wait until next month.)
February 13, 1930
(February meeting did not hold Good Tidings.) Aviation: Proposed landing field to be abandoned. It was learned that the people who were expected to back us financially were not particularly interested in aviation and did not care if Williamson had a field or not. Their reason for interest was based solely on the fact that it was sponsored by the Legion and they were lending their support as a sense of duty. Boxing Committee: The outcome of the boxing demonstration which was sponsored by the Post was not a financial success. The entertainment was good but the crowd was thin. Motion made and carried that we charge the deficit of $72.15 to experience and pay the bills. Motion made and carried to lay the Fight Program on the table for the present.
March 13, 1930
Post will work with Rotary Club on putting on a Boy's Night (I can remember these nights.) Farm Bureau was given permission to use the Post Home for meetings. Outdoor celebration with Fire Company discussed. Motion was made to have a Clean Up day. A letter was to be put in the paper about Reforestation Project. (These guys had no money but never quit with their ideas.)
April 10, 1930
Poppy Sale: To be held by high school children (Remember, the Post had no Auxiliary back then). Clean Up Night: To be held on regular meeting nights starting at 6:30 p.m. Music: Ray DeHond reported practice every Thursday night and if possible would form a Band. Farm Bureau thanked Legion for use of Club Rooms. Reforestation: Moved and carried to buy trees from the State and reforest the right-of-way up to and including the reservoir and hire the work done. (This right of way is off South Ave., Route 21, North of Floyd DeRoo's house. There are no trees planted along this right-of-way, but there are many Pine trees around the old reservoir undoubtedly put there by this project at this time. I can find no additional information in the minutes.) Outdoor Celebration: It was moved and supported to work with the Fire Company on this project.
June 12, 1930
Boys Night: Held with the Rotary Club. Our share was $35.07. Voted to have our road signs (East and West of town on old Route 104) repainted per design. Poppy Sale: Profit was $73.79. Letter of thanks read from school thanking Post for flag presented on Memorial Day to Standard Bearer. Outdoor Celebration: Progressing. Meeting was adjourned temporarily to listen to fight returns over the radio which had been loaned for the Post to use for the evening by Messrs. Blake and Rooney (Ideal Drug Store. Remember this is 1930)After adjournment matter of sponsoring a Glider Club was discussed and it was voted to do same. (These guys never quit.) Committee formed to purchase a bass horn for our band at the outdoor celebration.
July 9, 1930
Reported that a bass horn had been rented for the use of the band for $10 for three months. Voted to have our Annual Picnic the first week in August. (For years we had an Annual Picnic.) Voted not to take advantage of the proposition of a Mr. Moore to purchase six aerial views of Williamson for $250. A communications was read from the Minnesota Historical Society requesting a recent telephone directory of the town compiled by the Post. A copy will be forwarded.
August 12, 1930
Picnic was discussed and to be held Thursday August 21 at Pultneyville. (Undoubtedly Cresent Beach, now a Yacht Club.)
September 11, 1930
Reported that there would be a Nationwide broadcast on radio about the American Legion's work. This was to come from Boston. Voted to have a special meeting on that Thursday night. Voted to accept a Mr. Stevens offer to use his Golf Club one night free. (Must have been the now Ontario Golf Club.) Voted to purchase bass horn to be owned by Legion and the engraved with Legion's name. Profit for year was $354.24.
October 9, 1930
Twenty members present. Bass horn purchased for $100. Signs painted for $61.38. Voted to have Turkey Raffle November 24.
November 13, 1930
Twenty-seven members present. Voted to buy lumber for new tables and new lace curtains for rooms. Several members gave a short talk of what they thought, and saw, and did the night of the Armistice in France. (November 11, 1918. Too bad we don't have that in the minutes.)
December 11, 1930
This was a County meeting. Lyons Post Drum and Bugle Corps entertained for a half hour of strong music.
Historian's note -- minutes are getting to have more information in them so I will have to condense them down and write only what I feel are of interest to the membership. Too bad, all of the information is good.
January 9, 1941
Boys State boy to be chosen from Williamson this year. Ontario next year. Chairman to contact the school to decide on how to chose boy, by contest or appointment. Motion carried to get uniforms for all members. Deposit to be $5. Carried to purchase two ventilating fans for the rooms. Wayne County Ladies Aux. thanked Bachelor Post (Williamson) for their Christmas donation. National Commander to be in Rochester.
February 13, 1941
It was carried that the Williamson Post ratify the Wayne County Constitution and by-laws as read. Post donated $10 to Bundles for Britain Fund drive. Post voted to purchase new stove for $250. Ladies Nite to be March 21st. Motion carried to donate $100 for operation of the skating rink by the Rotary for the remainder of the season. Flag purchased for Girl Scouts.
March 6, 1941
It was stated that the Marion Chamber of Commerce would send one boy to Boys State. The new stove was installed. Al Lockley stated he would have open house at his home for the State Commander, all members invited. State Commanders Dinner was held at the Grange Hall with 200 Legion and Aux. members in attendance.
April 10, 1941
Under sick call it was reported that Adrian Van Kouwenberg was ill. He was sent a carton of cigarettes. He was suffering from siatic rheumatism. Ladies nite was held with 75 people in attendance. Steak and french fries were served and bingo was played (Sound familiar?) The event cost the Post $48. Post to hold annual clean-up nite meeting nite in May. L. L. Blake spoke about the new canning factory in Williamson and its benefits to the town. Voted to donate $100 to the canning factory fund to be used for purchase of lot and installing railroad siding. (The factory was later built as Walt Wegners, then became Seneca Foods, now Thatcher Chemical - next to Burger King.) Flag was presented to Girl Scouts in the auditorium at joint meeting with PTA. State Commanders Dinner cost Post $140.36. May meeting was clean-up nite but a report of Memorial Day was written. Memorial Day was held in Pultneyville.They marched from Jay Street. Commander Fred Meinhardt led the color guard, school band, scouts, and school children to the cemetery. After the services the members went to the Post rooms where a special meeting was held pertaining to helping out the Sunday School Leagues of the town. It was carried to pay the lighting bill at Fireman's Park (Sunday School's share.) Carried to purchase a fan suitable to create a breeze in the Post rooms in the summer months.
June 12, 1941
Veterans Mountain Camp was discussed. Voted to send the camp $7.60, which was an assessment of $.10 per member. (If you want to know more about Veterans Mountain Camp see me.) Voted to recover pool tables. Voted to reimburse Al Lockley $100 toward his expenses as State Commander. Harold Cheetham stated he was going to raise the rent to $350 because of rising fuel prices. If the Post took a three year lease he would put in a new floor. Voted to do this. Legion nite at Red Wing Stadium will be July 29th. It would cost $.80 to see Jersey City play. County Convention to be held in Fire Hall, then retire to Post rooms for dinner and social time. Roast Beef sandwiches, mashed potatoes and liquid refreshments served at the cost of $.35 per plate (Wow).Voted to charge $.50 per plate (Still Wow).Voted to buy a refrigerator for club rooms.
July 10, 1941
Would cost $62 to fix pool tables. Voted to have Legion Emblem, Post name and number painted on the entrance door to rooms. Voted to pay for members tickets for Red Wings game. Social Club members were voted to be given the same deal. Detailed account given about the Look Out posts in town. There were National Air maneuvers to be held. Posts to be located at the intersections of Kenyon Rd. and the other located on the Van Cruyingham Rd.. Several members of the Post volunteered to man the posts. Voted to buy safe for the club rooms.
August 7, 1941
Pool tables fixed for $63.75. Voted to buy new billiard balls. Safe has been purchased and installed. Voted to buy a desk lamp for Adjutant desk. (I can remember that lampand the roll top desk with Ray De Hond, Adjutant, sitting, taking minutes after I joined.) Voted to send all local boys in service a carton of cigarettes. Reported the Post had $2,200 in checking account. Post won $10 for best appearing Post at Lyons Convention Parade.
August 25, 1941
Meeting was called to discuss Boys Nite at school. The Post would do this with the help of the Rotary Club. After discussion it was decided to hold Boys Nite at Fireman's Park and have a picnic. Will be held on September 4th. Boys Nite was a success from the reports of the boys. The following is from the minutes as written--
"One young lad (Tellier) nine years old told me (Ray De Hond, Adj.) that he ate 11 hots and drank two bottles of chocolate milk, one bottle of orange and one bottle of pop.I asked him if it made him sick and said he only was a little uncomfortable for awhile."
September 11, 1941
Committees reported door sign is done, floor will be laid soon. Letter of thanks from Sunday School League for donation so they could have nite games under lights. Voted to purchase a candy, cigarette and cigar vending machine for $90. Motion made to pay Adjutant $2 per meeting. Tabled to be studied. (How about that Don and Herb?) Voted to have 2 meetings a month. Voted to havea turkey raffle. Five new social members voted in.
September 25, 1941
Floor in and looks good. Adjutant pay discussed and tabled again. (2 bucks is two bucks.)Minutes stated maybe the Adjutant could be relieved of some of his duties. Post purchased book "The History of the Department of N.Y." for $3.50 plus$.50 to have Post name on it. Voted not to have a turkey raffle. Will have a Clambake.
October 9, 1941
Committee for pay for Adjutant reported.They recommended that the Adjutant be allowed $1 per meeting to pay a stenographer for typing minutes and other clerical work connected with Legion affairs. This was carried. Brought up to have a permanent custodian of equipment and finances of same. No action taken at this time.
October 23, 1941
Motion carried to hire man to oversee the financial equipment and take care of the rooms. Voted to let County 40 et 8 use rooms for their monthly meeting. Committee appointed to work with Rotary on ice skating rink east of town.
November 13, 1941
It was carried that Post send $50 to County Aux. for Christmas fund. Post gave Community Chest $50. Armistice night dinner cost $67.05. It was carried that Post pay dues of members in VA Hospitals until death or recovery.
November 27, 1941
County Meeting to be held here with Dan O'Hara showing movies of Legion Mountain Camp. Voted to have a feed at next meeting and a sum of $.40 per plate be charged.
December 11, 1941
(4 days after Pearl Harbor)
Look Out posts discussed. Al Lockley spoke about air raid wardens, First-aid men, and police patrol. Police patrol would guard against sabotage and the moping up of parachute troops. Practice at Look Out posts would begin. Historians note: I am sure the December 7th attack must have been discussed but nothing was noted in the minutes about the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
January 8 & January 22, 1942
Cleaning lady given $10.00 for Christmas. Two card tables had been purchased. Discussion held about possible power failures. (Remember this is war time.) Talked about buying generator for $200. Committee appointed. Bank night was purposed to increase attendance. Post to give $5.00 Defense Stamp for person present. Discussed to save waste paper and money made from same be used to buy cigarettes for boys in service. Tickets for Judge Brasser's banquet in Lyons to be $1.25 per plate. Proposition for generator discussed. Voted on and was defeated. Mrs. Robert Harris and Mrs. Biwood Fuller asked for permission to use club rooms to feed troops passing thru Williamson if emergency arose. Carried. Voted to have Pancake Supper at cost of $.25 per plate. Post purchased another War Bond.
February 12 & February 26, 1942
County Meeting reports nothing much except those members wishing to be Defense Factory Guards to see Al Lockley. Ice skating rink committee reported rink not fit for skating. (Nothing changes, Fedele.) Talked about forming Sons of American Legion. Two more Defense Bonds purchased. Voted to open account in Ontario Bank. Ladies Night to be March 4th and would have steak. Post to rent safe deposit box. Post to investigate if it is liable for income tax. Voted to bond Finance Officer and Adjutant. Voted to table Sons of Legion for now. Voted to have snow cleaned of ice rink at our expense. We will contact Mrs. Pearsall for permission and hire a plow to remove snow. (I believe I just heard this.) Voted to spend $150 for Civil Defense preparations. (Letter is attached to the minutes requesting this from the Town Supervisor. Money was to send some one to Civil Defense School to learn about same and come back and teach Duties of Civil Defense to volunteers. Al Lockley was appointed.)
March 12 & March 25, 1942
Myron Orbaker, Chairman of the Town Salvage Committee, spoke about saving of different salvage usually burned or thrown away and how valuable it would be to the war effort. Voted to have regular clean-up nite in April and combine it with picking up of salvage. It was reported thru the kind assistance of Attorney Bill Barrett that we would not have to pay income tax. Voted to give Bill a Social Club membership and key to Club rooms. (Bill later went into the service, became a member and Commander of the Post.) Voted at County Meeting that Al Lockley head the Wayne County Legion Defense Committee. Ladies Night cost $85.98. Voted to buy vacuum cleaner. Voted to buy new sink and cabinet with modern equipment at the cost of $115.00. Voted to buy a mimeograph machineat cost of $l8.00. Blood Bank would be in town, all should give. State Commander's Dinner would be in Palmyra, $1.25 per plate. Salvage Nite to be April 9. Committee appointed to look into cost of building Observation Posts for spotting enemy aircraft. Brought up about telephones for Air Raid Wardens. Voted to put $500 in Defense Fund for things as they come up. Discussed about sending championship school basketball team to New York. Due to war could not do it. Talked about buying jackets for team. $l00 given to Seniors for their trip. Three boys going to Boys State.
April 23, 1942
Post will buy jackets for basketball team. Clean-up night was held on April 9. Letter from Rotary thanking us for our help. Girl Scouts were given $104 for their activities. Voted to pay Williamson 50% of the cost of sending the Sun to all the boys in the service and this to be done for the duration of the war. Post will buy 25 white helmets for the local Auxiliary Police, at a cost of $4.00 a piece. (I believe there a couple of these up in the archives.)
May 14 & May 28, 1942
Basketball jacket were ordered. Boys State would be in Manulis, NY. Four boys from Wayne County would go. Gas rationing was main thing discussed at County meeting. Permission given to Albert Young to use Legion chairs for funerals as often as necessary. (Young Funeral Home.) County Commander stated that the boys going into the service be given a proper send off. Our Post will cooperate in this matter (and they did). The subject of our soldiers joining the Legion when come home brought up and discussed. Was laid on the table. (I don't know what the problem was.) Tom Vanderbilt chosen for Boys State. 27 members at Memorial Day service at Sunnyside.
June 11 & June 25, 1942
Program was set up by County and Posts to give boys going into the service proper send off. Small gifts would be given. It was carried to invite returning soldiers to join the Post. Meeting to be held at the school for all observers. 8th Grade American Legion awards to be given in Marion and Ontario next year. (Remember no posts in those towns yet.) National Commander requested all Posts collect old phonograph records which could be turned in and new ones made for use in the Army camps. Report given on the Observation Posts. Voted to buy Art Wallace's trailer to be used for a Observation Post. Not to exceed $500. Voted to have toilets made for Observation Posts. Voted to have phone installed in Ray DeHonds house for duration. He was head observer.
July 9, 1942
World War II is in full steam, guys from town are leaving for the service and the Legion is doing its part on the home front. We now continue with the last six months of 1942.
It was reported that the basketball team had received their jackets. They were pleased with them and thanked the Post. Lights had been installed at the Kenyon Rd. lookout post and a phone at De Honds. Voted to buy a trailer for $600 for the north post on Kenyon Rd. Machine committee instructed to reopen equipment.
July 23, 1942
Trailer had been purchased for the sum of $450. AI Lockley appointed inspector of lookout posts in northern Wayne county. Adrian Van Kouwenberg reported he was at Sodus when the boys left that week and each boy was given a package from the committee. The cost of the package was $.39 and each contents unknown. (1 remember getting a package in 1944, writing paper etc..)
August 6, 1942
A meeting would be held at the school for lookout observers. It was explained how gas rationing would work for the observers. Communication was read pertaining to Navy Dept. offering jobs in construction for the duration at a salary of $55 to $125 a month and keeps. (I believe this could have been for Sampson Training Center. It was started in 1942. Good wages for those days.) Voted to buy the radio that had been used on a trial basis. Purchase price $90. Post voted to pay the cost of $.30 per photograph of the boys in the service. Reported that 2050 old records had been turned in. There were 450 more in Marion to be brought in.
August 27, 1942
Another salvage drive was to be had on November 8th. Legion will help. L. L. Blake brought up proposition to give all service people a 32 page booklet to enter service information. This would be helpful in later years. Voted to purchase booklets. It was voted to have this a joint venture with the Rotary as they were doing things for the servicemen also. Legion donated $10 to Mountain Camp. Voted to buy 2 electric heaters at $25 each for the observation posts.
September 10, 1942
Finances were pretty good in September, 1942. Checking had $3021.35 Int. Acct. Williamson Bank $6576.16, Ontario Bank $1005.00. War Bonds $3330. Reported 2600 old phonograph records had been sent in. 500 more on hand to be sent. A book The History of the American Legion in New York was presented to the library Voted to pay present members dues for 1942 and 1943. New members dues to be $3.00. Election of officers were held and Marenus Peterham was elected Commander. (Jack's father. Jack would later become a Post Commander.)
September 24, 1942
It was suggested by the chairman of the mobilization committee that a bomb squad be organized. They would go to the site of the landings and determine conditions whether bomb had exploded or was a dud or time fused. Four members volunteered. Voted to sponsor Girl Scout campout as in the past. Voted to check over the relic display to see if anything can be given to the salvage drive. Voted to buy 25 yr. pins for eligible members.
October 8, 1942
Salvage work detail ready and have trucks lined up. Committee appointed to get speaker for Armistice nite and any boys home from the service be invited.
October 22, 1942
Salvage drive would be headed by a parade with school band, Red Cross workers, Legion, Rotary , Police, Wardens, trucks and helpers. They would march from school to Bennett St. and to parking lot where L. L. Blake would give opening address and the salvage drive would begin. (Everyone got behind the war effort.) It was voted to give all shells and heavy stuff in the relic case to the scrap drive. Rifles to remain in the Post. Reported that Norris Sutherland (Game Warden in town) had a deer he would cut up and Legion could give to some needy family.
November 24, 1942
It was reported that the local draft board would like help on borderline cases. Would welcome Legion members input. The Honor Roll Board was brought up. Dedication to be in the High School Dec. 7th. at 8:00 PM. Rev. Walvoord would be the speaker. (Ray Walvoord's father.) Honor Roll would be presented to the town by W. Horton (Rotary) and accepted by L. L. Blake, Town Supervisor. Board will be kept up to date for the duration of the war. Legion will attend in a body with uniforms if you have one. (This Honor Roll was around for a long time. It ended up in Young Funeral Home garage where Jack Peterham and I rescued it. We set it up in the Legion on display for many years until it became pretty raggedy. It was disassembled but we still have the name cards with the hopes of some day putting something together.)
Scrap drive committee reported that about 190 tons of scrap had been brought in. 55 tons of which the owner would be paid for it. Gross value $1300 of which $900 could be used for war relief purposes. Donations made to Community Chest and VA Christmas going home fund. State Commanders banquet to be $1.50 per plate. The idea of setting up of a fund for widows of members discussed and committee formed. (The beginning of the first trust fund.) Voted to give piano to Sampson Naval Base if they would like it. 3 alert calls reported at observation posts. Drawing for 10 lb. turkey won by Harold Cheetham. (You might know.)
December 10, 1942
Ray Fuller appointed Chief Observer on Reservoir Hill. Voted to buy assistant observers $10 Christmas presents. Voted to send both members of the Legion and Social Club who are in the service a carton of cigarettes and pay their dues for 1943. Cleaning women of Post to be given $10 Christmas present. Legion invited to Methodist Church on Sunday, Dec. 18th, to hear an address by a Chaplain from Sampson Naval Base. Post will go to Sodus to see the boys off next week.
December 24, 1942
John Brown, a social member, was in Sodus Hospital with fractured arms and legs. Voted to give him his favorite medicine. Voted to send every social member a dues notice and rules of social members. (Sounds familiar.) Cooks to put on special meal in January. All dues must be paid to attend.
Well, the first year of the War has gone by and the Post really did their part. I would imagine other things were done that never got into the minutes. 1943 will be coming up next.
January 14, 1943
Commander was Marenus Peterham (Jack's dad). Letters read from servicemen, thanking Post for smokes. Chaplain of the Sampson Naval Training Station sent letter thanking Post for offer of the piano but asked Post to retain same to later date. (We sure retained it for a long time. Just go rid of it a couple years ago.) Voted to pay half the subscriptions to the Williamson Sun for boys in service. Discussion was held pertaining to changing the meeting night to Wednesday night. Stores were open on Wednesday nights so those living out of town could get groceries and come to meeting. (Remember gas rationing was in full force at that time.) The commander and adjutant would decide. Voted to go to one meeting a month for the duration. Special meetings could be called if necessary. Voted to discontinue phone in Ray DeHonds house as phones in observation posts were taken out. (The posts were closed in 1943 as the chance of enemy planes had been eliminated.) Voted to buy $20 worth of playing cards for boys in service.
February 10, 1943
Trailer on Kenyon Road will be sold for no less than $300. Bill Barrett now in service and wrote Post thanking them for all the favors. Information given about forming a scout troop. Tabled until Post could get more facts. Committee formed to look into the purchase of rain or top coats to use at military funerals when the weather was bad.
March 10, 1943
Sum of $100 was donated to Red Cross. Claude Nevelzers Social Club dues were paid because he had plowed paths to the observations booths. Voted to contact all men of the present war (WW II) that have a honorable discharge and try to induce them to join the Post. There was considerable discussion in regard to draftees and their eligibility for a discharge from the service of the U.S.A. (I don't know what that was all about...) Top coats were discussed, could buy coats for $37.50. Proposition tabled until next meeting.
April 15, 1943
60 tons of salvage was collected. Voted to sell trailer on Kenyon Road for $250. Donald Mahieu joined the Legion Post and was the first WW II soldier to join. (I believe he was not in the service too long and was discharged because of medical reasons.) County meeting report stated that Palmyra had a new Post home. Voted to buy more service books. (These were given to all men going into the service from town.) Voted to print 100 Introductory Cards to be given to men in the service. (These were the Legionnaire in the Making cards we used for a number of years.) Post would send 3 boys to Boys State to he held in Manulis, N.Y., Marion, Ontario; and Williamson. (Be prepared for a shock in the July minutes.) East Williamson Fire Co. thanked Legion for helping dedicate their Honor Roll. (Most all organizations had their own individual Honor Roll. We have Granges' upstairs in the archives.) Voted to attend memorial services at E. Williamson Reformed Church Sunday before Memorial Day. Minister would be asked to give the address at the cemetery. Voted to have signs painted on each end of town. Voted to appoint a committee to get flowers for service men who lost their lives in the service and to contact families to see if they would want a military funeral.
May 13, 1943
County men reported 636 members in the county. Boys State was canceled because of gas rationing. Post voted to give boys a $25 defense bond. Sodus Post asked the Post to take charge of sending the boys off on Wednesday, May 25. Post to furnish speaker, with the colors there and as many members present as possible. (Most everyone leaving for the service left from Sodus.) Memorial Day to be at Pultneyville. Post would sponsor a defense stamp sale at school with a $25 defense bond to winner.
May 23, 1943
At a special meeting of the Post it was voted to cancel the Memorial Day services because of the gas shortage.
June 10, 1943
Mountain Camp needed funds. Post sent $10. 400 to 500 Legionnaire in the Making cards had been sent. Voted to sponsor a Boy Scout Troop in conjunction with the Rotary and Orphix. Richard Bilger joined the Post. (He recently passed away. He went into the service from East Williamson but settled out of state and was no longer a member of the Post.)
July 8, 1943
Boys State award was given to Orlo Plyter ($25 defense bond). (Remember the trip to Manulis was canceled because of the shortage of gas. I was glad to do my part but disappointed I could not go.) Letter of thanks read from Orlo Plyter. Boy Scouts would start this fall. (Here is something I didn't know.) The piano was loaned to the Jamaican labor camp for recreational purposes. (The camp was located south of the school, buildings still there and are apartments now.) Legion signs on the ends of town had been painted.
July 8, 1943
It was stated that the State needed fruit inspectors. If anyone interested the pay was $45 a week. Sold the toilet at the north post for $5. Voted to send Chas. Vanmaldeghem a box of cigars.(He was in the hospital with wounds suffered on Guadalcanal, So. Pacific.)
September 9, 1943
Voted to pay Adjutant $50 and Finance Officer $25 per year because of their extra burden. Letter was read from Linwood DeHond who was in North Africa. Finance Officer gave report. Post was doing real good. Peter Van Horn was elected Commander. Dues for 1943 and 1944 to be $2.00.
October 14, 1943
L. L. Blake appointed liaison officer to contact boys getting out of service and induce then to join. Another scrap drive would be held in November. Mr. E. R. Vadeboncoeur of W.S.Y.R. Syracuse radio station would be Armistice night speaker. Post would eat at Post Home and then have the speaker at the school for more seating.
November 9, 1943
Discussion was held pertaining to the Legion benefit fund. (Our present death benefit trust fund.) Insurance companies would not handle this but we could put $23,000 in a Trust fund. It would pay a $250 benefit at the time of a members death. This was laid on the table until next meeting. It was brought up that we needed more room for meetings etc. Dr. Sperry's offices were to become vacant next to the meeting room. Cheetham gave an outline on what he would do in renting them to the Post. (There was apparently much discussion on this. Too much to put down here. They tabled it until next meeting so they could get more information from Mr. Cheetham.) $300 was given to the Community Chest.
November 29, 1943 (Special Meeting)
Discussion was again held about the Dr. Sperry rooms with Mr. Cheetham. Post voted to rent their present rooms plus Sperry rooms for a period of 4 years for the sum of $2,408 paid in advance. (Leave it to Cheetham.) Post donated to Poppy Fund. Post donated to Going Home Fund. Voted to have Death Benefit Fund proposition drawn up by an attorney and presented at the next meeting. A letter was read from the County adjutant asking the Post to meet at the Sodus Post rooms on Dec. 9th. 1943 for the purpose of attending the presentation of the Distinguished Service Cross to Capt. Clifford Raymer posthumously by request of the late Captain's Widow. (Capt. Raymer was the first person to lose his life from Williamson. He gave his live in North Africa. Although he was not a Williamson native he had married a Williamson girl.)
December 16, 1943
Death Benefit Fund was agreed upon and put into effect. Voted to give Post cleaning lady $10 Christmas present. Voted to rearrange the light fixtures in the Post rooms. National Commanders dinner in Rochester to cost $2.50 per plate.Historians Note: 1943 was a big year for the Post. Finances were good. Many local men were being discharged from the service. They had been drafted at a older age (35 to 45). I guess the Army figured that they were getting enough younger men. Most of these men joined the Post, so membership was increasing. 1944 will be another big year for the Post. It will be a big year for me as I graduated from school and was drafted.
Capt. Clifford Raymer, May 6, 1943
Cpl. Abraham Nolan, Sept. 13, 1943
Sgt. Wesley Fletcher, Dec. 19, 1943*
* Wes Fletcher was the first Williamson man to lose his life. He graduated from school and lived here. The other men had married Williamson girls.
Third full year of World War II
Historian's Note: I was drafted into the Navy.
Pete Van Horn was Commander. Reported that County committee would give $25 to cigarette fund for boys in service over seas. Details were given on Death Benefit fund. Voted that Trustees of the Post be authorized to establish the Trust Fund. Voted to send $25 to State for cigarettes and Post name be stamped on each pack. Voted to transfer monies to Trust Fund. Ladies night was discussed. It was also discussed to have a stag night and invite the Social Club, thereby making the collection of dues easier. Voted to do this. Ladies night would be held on February 22nd. Voted to have the fuse box installed in the club rooms. It was in Decker and Mullies store below the rooms and not too handy when the store was closed.
February 10, 1944
By-laws were being worked on. (Nothing changes.) Five boys from the county will go to Boys State at Manulis. Voted to send three boys from our Post. One each from Williamson, Marion and Ontario. (Still no Posts in these two towns.) Voted to help men returning from service with their mustering out pay.
March 9, 1944
Rules for the first Trust Fund were stated. (There are no survivors of this fund. They were WW I men.) Voted to give Red Cross $150. Voted to sponsor 4 girl scouts to go to Camp Beechwood. The cost of $28 a girl. Committee appointed to handle the sending of cigarettes to men from Williamson, Marion and Ontario in the service. Resolution was attached to the minutes and a copy sent to Mrs. Nellie Fletcher pertaining to the death of her son Wesley Fletcher in action. (As you remember he was the first man to lose his life from Williamson.)
April 13, 1944
Donation cans had been put in different stores etc. to collect money for cigarettes. Reported that donations were light and that the can in the Ontario Post Office had been stolen. (What's new?) Collections were $54.11 from cans and $138 from jackpot collections. (? ? ? ? ) Reported that men in service did not need a hunting and fishing license when home on leave. Voted to cooperate with Rotary on next salvage drive. Voted to set up a committee to collect insignia from all the men in service. $50 to be used for this purpose. (L. L. Blake did a great job on this. The display with the insignia is in the archives upstairs. It was in Blakes drug store window on main street during the last part of the war.)
May 11, 1944
Cigarette committee reported that 431 cartons of Old Golds had been sent overseas. Salvage drive to be held May 18th. Everyone to meet at post rooms and after drive come back for a lunch. 28 members attended the Memorial Day services at the East Williamson Reformed Church. Memorial Day services were held at Sunnyside.
June 8, 1944
Boys chosen for Boys State were Richard Johnson, Williamson; William Cole, Marion; and J. McCrea, Ontario. Reported that there was still one vacancy in the County and that Lindy Van Kouwenberg be sent from Williamson. Stated that orders had been received to close down the observation posts. Trailer to be given to Boy Scouts for their use. Rising vote of thanks was given to Ray Fuller for his efforts in manning the posts. Voted to give a him a quart of good liquor. Voted to pay the tax on pool tables and other equipment.
July 13, 1944
(I had graduated from school and was waiting.) Cigarette report was given. Had taken in $1195.08 from cans and jack pots. Spent $935.18. 7th. District would hold their meeting at the Post July 23rd. Lunch would be served.
August 15, 1944
Nominating committee was appointed. Disposal of observation posts discussed.
September 14, 1944
Cigarette supply had run out. Voted to send candy to servicemen for Christmas. Another salvage drive will be held on September 28th and a supper will be held at the club rooms after. Voted to close Sons of American Legion account as most of sons were in the service. Nominating committee nominated George Shermer for Commander.
October 12, 1944
Historians note: I was drafted and went to Sampson NTC on October 3, 1944. No more waiting.) George Shermer was the new Commander. (George's Service Citation, when he served with Gen. Pershing in Mexico, hangs on the wall in the Post. He later went to Europe in WW I.) Armistice night dinner to be held in the club rooms. Voted to by a Addressograph machine for $30. No meeting would be held in November due to Armistice night. A resolution was spread on the minutes and a copy sent to the family of Ellis Heath who lost his life while flying a fighter plane over France in combat.
November 11, 1944
There had to be some business conducted Armistice night. $350 to be given to the Community Chest. $25 given to the Home Going Fund. $100 given to Wayne County Ladies Auxiliary to carry on their work in the different hospitals. Servicemen who were home were introduced: 3 from Navy, 1 from the Marines and 1 from the Army. Also present was Ensign Ernest Phillips. Lindy Van Kouwenberg, who had attended Boys State, was present and gave a picture to the Post of the flag raising at Boys State and thanked the Post for sending him. (Lindy is a Past Commander and a member of the Post.) Speaker of the evening was Corp. William Chase of Rochester who gave a very interesting talk on New Guinea and Australia and a vivid description of the Japanese method of fighting. 30 seconds of silence was held in memory for those had made the supreme sacrifice.
December 14, 1944
(Historian's Note: I finished Boot camp on December 12th , and came home during the great blizzard I described at the January meeting. Gazuber depth.) Voted to close the equipment on Sundays unless an attendant was on duty. (Lots of discussion on this before settled. Apparently players were going house to house trying to get change.) Voted to hold Social Club membership to 60 members. Noted that the collection of Social Clubs dues was slow and that if they were not paid by February 1st they be dropped. Gave the Post cleaning lady $10 for Christmas.
World War II winding down and will end.
National Commanders dinner to be in New York City. $6.00 per plate for dinner. Commander Sermer reported that a FBI agent had called on him to make plans for cooperation next year. (I do not know what that was about.) Ladies night to be Feb. 22nd. Many letters of thanks read from men over seas for the fruit cakes and cigarettes that were sent to them. $50 was sent to help with expenses of going away kits. Legion members and Social Club members had a fine supper and listened to AI Sission of WHAM as speaker.
February 8, 1945
Mrs. Veerman thanked the Legion for their splendid attendance at the memorial service held for her son at the East Williamson Reformed church. Her son was killed somewhere in Holland. Comrade Blake gave a talk regarding a memorial for vets of WW I and WW II. He stated that he had sent letters to all vets asking them what they would like best and they seemed to like a bowling hall, community center and an airfield. (I guess this never got off the ground.) Ladies nite was held on Feb. 22nd. Chicken dinner was served to 135 persons. There was entertainment, bingo and cards.
March 8, 1945
It was agreed to bring in Legion magazines which would in turn be sent to men in the service. Paper drive was to be held instead of scrap drive. Red Cross was given $200. FBI had advised the Post it was hiring High school girls for finger print and secretarial work for $1750 a year. Voted to close club rooms at midnight to conform with the governments regulation on club rooms during the war.
April 12, 1945
Voted to buy full page ad in the Sun for the War Bond drive. Voted to buy venetian blinds for the Odd Fellows Hall as it was being used for a youth center. Post voted to buy bowling shoes to be used at the VA hospital in Canandaigua. Jacob Boise was no longer able to take care of amusement center due to ill health. (He maintained the equipment for many years.) Party was held for him.
May 10, 1945
Decoration Day was brought up. To be held at Pultneyville. Girl Scouts were given $120 for their camping program. War Memorial was again brought up. Nothing decided on. Les Blake thanked the post for the box of candy sent to him while in the V A hospital. Capt. Dick Burcroff sent a letter asking about joining the legion. (He was a captain in the merchant Marine and had many harrowing experiences. He became a member.) Discussion had on purchasing uniforms for new members coming in. Same rules would apply as in the past. Post to look into new parade flag for the school. (It was noted in the end of the June minutes that the Post had attended Memorial services for three men who had given their lives in the war. This was just the beginning of bringing home the remains of other casualties from this area.)
July 12, 1945
No report on purchase of school flag. Royal Uniform would measure for uniforms. Roland Van Lare thanked post for cigars sent to him while he was in the hospital. Nominating committee appointed.
August 9, 1945
Voted to buy a flag and pole with stand to be used in the school auditorium and for the flag transfer each year. Boy Scout comm. appointed. Youth Center at Odd Fellows Hall to be closed. Blind comm. discharged. Town clerk would make copies of discharges for free. Legion dues for '45 and '46 to be $2.00. Voted to pay Finance officer and adjutant $50.00. John Fox was elected Commander. He was the first WW II man to become Post commander.
September 14, 1945
Amusement center was closed until further notice. Voted to purchase a piano. Voted to form a American Legion Band. Lt. Vivian Cheetham lost her life in a auto accident in California. She was the daughter of Harold Cheetham. Resolution was sent to the family.
October 11, 1945
School flag had arrived and would be presented at an assembly at school. Youth Canteen asked for donation to continue. Post to investigate to find out what their programs were. Subject brought up about sending Christmas packages to service people. It was decided to discontinue the program as so many service men were coming home. (Nothing was noted in the minutes about the war ending.) Nothing new on Veterans Memorial. Voted to only have Legionnaires and servicemen come to the Armistice night dinner.
December 13, 1945
New members were introduced. Miss Jones of the Youth Canteen had been contacted. A satisfactory reply was not received so subject was dropped. Flag had been presented to the school. Voted to give cleaning lady $10.00. Amusement center to be open only when cashier present. Vote to stop the cigarette fund. Resolution was drawn up regarding the death of Lt. Jack Meinhardt, he was missing in the Pacific and finally listed dead. State Commanders dinner in Lyons to be $1.50 per plate.
December 18, 1945 - Special Meeting
The purpose of this meeting as explained by comrade Les Blake was for the assistance or aid to our comrades and their families who lost all their household goods and belongings in the fire which destroyed the apartments and furniture store in the Famsworth Block on the night of Dec. 13, 1945. (This was across from the Candy Kitchen where Ashley Insurance is now. I came home on leave a few days after it happened.) $500 each was given to the Gerald Cooney family, Clarence Nevelzer family, Walter Morganthaler family and the Boyer family whose brother had made the supreme sacrifice in the war. Permission was given to the 40 et 8 to meet in the club rooms on Sunday, January 13, 1946.
January 10, 1946
Ladies night chairman appointed. Voted to give all WW II vets who had joined the Post a Legion pin. National Commanders Dinner to be in Rochester.
February 14, 1946
Membership at 186 members. Requested that Post sponsor a Boy Scout Troop. It was requested that any veteran who had malaria while in the service to report same to Lyons V A office. $20.00 donated to Legion Mountain Camp. This camp was described to the WW II men. Voted to have an athletic committee appointed to look into bowling, basketball and softball teams. Ladies night to held at the High School. Decided to wear civilian clothing to ladies night. (Must be the men had worn their uniforms to ladies night.)
March 14, 1946
Ladies night cost $600. L.L. Blake stated that all the service insignia available had been collected and they should be displayed in a suitable case etc. in the Post rooms. Special firing squad was to be appointed for military funerals. Post would sell 1,000 poppies. Subject of having a Legion Band was discussed. Red Cross was given $200.
April 11, 1946
Softball would be played during daylight hours not under lights. Poppies had arrived and Junior class was going to sell them. Voted to give Youth Canteen $75. Memorial Day will be in Williamson. The death of Earl Foss was reported. Although he had not joined the Legion a letter will be sent to the family. (He had gone thru the war unharmed and had been discharged from the service. 1 was at home on leave at the time and had talked with him that day. He wrapped his vehicle around a tree that evening.) Voted that Social Club members be barred from club rooms on meeting nights.
May 9, 1946
18 members attended the State Commanders Banquet at Lyons. Registration book was obtained and voted to have a suitable stand made to hold it. Post rooms needed painting. Landlord to be contacted to see if he would do same. (Ha!) Memorial Day held at Sunnyside. 100 members present.
June 13, 1946
Band Committee was working hard to organize. Total membership in the County was 1939. Voted to pay for lights at Fireman's Park for the Sunday School League. Subject of building a new Post Home was brought up and discussed. (This was the beginning of many long meetings and heated discussions. Remember this is 1946 and five years later we moved. This will come up in the ensuing history many times.)
July 11, 1946
After much debate it was voted to give the Girl Scouts $200. Junior class sold $35 worth of poppies. Voted to increase the salaries of Adjutant and Finance officer to $100.
Historians Note: I was discharged from the Navy on July 31st. and started attending Legion Meetings. I had joined the Post in 1945 while home on leave. My first job with the Post was working with the kitchen committee.
August 8, 1946
Abe Datthyn. WW I vet. was elected Commander for 1946-47. Voted to have the building committee do the following:
1. Authorized to obtain prices and options on available sites.
2. To consult an architect on preliminary sketches on plans after a site is chosen.
3. To commence proceedings for the incorporation of the Post.
4. To inspect other Legion homes and rooms.
Boys State would be held at Colgate this year. Bowling team was organized. Dues to be $2.00 for the coming year. Blood donor chairman was appointed.
September 12, 1946
Band report was given. They would need about $900 for uniforms, instruments and music. Band had played at the Palmyra Fair. Voted give band $1,000. (Elmer Nalgee and Ray DePauw were key men in the success of this band. They were fun to march with.) Reported that the Marion Post had received their charter. Bill Barrett of the building committee reported Joe Clark had been contacted on his land. (This was the area in and around Circle Drive. It was an old apple orchard at that time. Circle Drive was not there at that time.) The committee had also visited several Legion Homes in Rochester. Special meeting to be held on September 26th to select sites. Voted to give $100 to Pultneyville Yacht Club for their harbor fund. Voted to sponsor a basketball team. (Picture on the wall at the Post Home.) Voted to have 3 bowling teams if necessary.
October 10, 1946
Reported band rehearsals were going fine. Nothing to report on Grange Hall. Legion members could look at Grange after the meeting. Voted to give basketball team $350 for uniforms. Voted to buy bowling team jackets. Armistice night dinner committee appointed.
November 14, 1946
Building committee still working. L.A. Wilson property discussed. (This was where the parking lot West of the Laundry is located.) Voted to continue sending the paper to men still in the service.
December 12, 1946
No report from the building committee. Band doing good. Basketball team tied for second place. Cleaning lady to be given $10 for Christmas.