BRIEF HISTORY OF THE AMERICAN LEGION
A group of twenty officers who served in the American Expeditionary Forces (A.E.F.) in France in World War I is credited with planning the Legion. A.E.F. Headquarters asked these officers to suggest ideas on how to improve troop morale. One officer, Lieutenant Colonel Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., proposed an organization of veterans. In February, 1919, this group formed a temporary committee, and selected several hundred officers who had the confidence and respect of the whole army.
When the first organization meeting took place in Paris in March, 1919, about 1000 officers and enlisted men attended. The meeting, known as the Paris Caucus, adopted a temporary constitution and the name "The American Legion." It also elected an executive committee to complete the organization work. It considered each soldier of the A.E.F. a member of the Legion. The executive committee named a subcommittee to organize veterans at home in the U.S.
The Legion held a second organizing caucus in St. Louis, MO in May, 1919. It completed the constitution and made plans for a permanent organization. It set up temporary headquarters in NY,NY and began its relief, employment and Americanism programs.
"Congress granted the Legion a national charter in September, 1919. The first national convention, held in Minneapolis, adopted a permanent constitution and elected officers to head the organization."
(NOTE: A more detailed history is recalled in the bulletin, History of The American Legion. This bulletin is free by writing to the office of the National Historian, The American Legion National Headquarters, P.O. Box 1055, Indianapolis, IN 46206.
Post 4 was issued their permanent charter 29 November 1920. In the spring of 1921 the members of the
American legion post 4 began construction of the a 2 story 4000 square foot building located at 300 N. Johnson Street, which was completed in 1924. This same building is currently being utilized by all veterans organizations in Pocatello as their main meeting and activity center.
There are currently 8500 veterans in Bannock County who are eligible for membership in the American Legion.
The sons of the American Legion were chartered on Feb 5 1935. To be eligible for membership in the Sons of the American Legion you must be a direct male descendant of a
service member who has served in WW1, WW2, Korea, Viet Nam up to present day. The veteran does not need to be living for a son to qualify.