Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.


Morning Star, March 17, 2019, pg. 3

This year is a special one for our local Leo Patrick Hanlon Post No. 55 of the American Legion in Albion as it celebrates its 100th anniversary. It first met at the Grand Army of the Republic Hall at 114 E. Erie St. on September 10, 1919. The first meeting was presided by William Harton, chairman of the committee that applied for a charter in the Legion. The Post had already received its state charter on July 29, 1919, and later would receive its national charter on April 10, 1921.

The Albion Recorder reported, "At an enthusiastic meeting of recently returned soldiers, sailors and marines held last evening in the G.A.R. Hall, and the Albion Post of the American Legion was organized and all indications point toward a rapid growth of the new society, which will be the G.A.R. of the veterans of the European War. There were thirty-four former service men present at last evening's gathering, every one of whom signed up as a charter member in the new post."

The first group of officers selected at that first meeting were as follows: Post Commander, Joseph Leavy; Post Vice-Commander, William Harton; Post Adjutant, Robert C. Baker; Post Finance Officer, Arthur G. Noble; Post Historian, Howell Van Gorden; Post Chaplain, Frederick Goodrich; Post Executive Committee: Grove Dunham, Louis Wochholz, Albert MacDonald." At the next meeting in October, the Post was named after Hanlon, the first Albion soldier killed in World War I.

From our Historical Notebook this week we present a 1911 photograph of the G.A.R. Hall, where our local Legion held its first meetings. This building was later acquired by the Methodist Episcopal Church next door and was used as an annex. The former G.A.R. Hall, erected in 1901-02, was demolished along with the Church in 1960. We congratulate Albion's American Legion on its 100th anniversary, and are looking forward to its special commemorative activities and articles this year. How many of our readers are members of the Leo Patrick Hanlon Post No. 55 of the American Legion?

GAR Hall 1911


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