A few World War I veterans from Elmhurst met in 1919 and, together, organized American Legion T.H.B. Post 187 to honor the memory of three of their Elmhurst comrades who were the first from our city to give their lives in defense of our country. Ernest Timrott, killed in action June 3, 1918, Marines; Richard Hintz, killed in action July 19, 1918, Army; Kinsley Buck, killed in action June 19, 1918, Marines. It is for God and Country, and the memory of these as well as the thousands of others who answered our Nation's call to arms, that we dedicate our efforts.
(The following are some excerpts taken from a Post History written by Past Commander Doug Chant in November 1978)
“T.H.B. Post 187 had 19 charter members in its beginning, September 26, 1919. By 1924 the membership had increased to 39.
In 1923 wives of Post members formed the Auxiliary of 16 members – Hulda Chant being the first to sign their charter.
In the late 20’s the Post formed the American Legion Baseball League in DuPage County. T.H.B. has had a team since 1926 and competed in State play-offs in 1929. Again in 1976 our team participated in the State finals this time played in Bellwood, and took 3rd place.
A Memorial was dedicated at the northwest corner of Wilder Park in 1927. It was rededicated in 1977 as a Memorial to all veterans of all wars.
By 1927 with Commander Arden Nance pushing the effort, the membership total went over the 300 mark.
During the early 30’s the Post led the campaign for the construction of the East End Swimming Pool. Under Commander Lou Kronig in 1933, the pool was opened.
In 1937 the Post played a major role in celebrating the city’s Centennial Celebration. The first T.H.B. Bowling League was organized in 1937 with eight teams of 5 men each. The league still is in existence today, bowling on Friday nights during the season. (Editor’s Note: The League as of this writing in 2009 no longer exists)
During WWII the first Post Home at 224 South York Street was purchased for $12,000.00. Remodeling cost approximately another $7,000.00 with a majority of the work done by Post Volunteers.
During the 40’s the Post was instrumental in the raising of funds for the first public display of fireworks at the July 4th celebration.
In the mid 1950’s the Post bought 18 acres of land fronting on both Butterfield and Roosevelt Roads for $25,500.00. The second Post Home was built on property for $140,000.00, and the Grand Opening was held in the summer of 1957.
In 1961 the west end of the property was sold for a Putt-Putt miniature golf course for $30,000.00. Later the south half of the property was sold for $55,000.00. The State of Illinois then took some of our frontage for $9,000.00.
Eventually the WWII veterans took over, and to me, that was a big step forward. I have visited Posts in various states, Greece, and Italy, but none can compare with T.H.B. 187 and our membership."
Past Commander, 1923-24.
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