|Franklin History Book - The American Legion
<Back MAIN Next>
Franklin's American Legion Post #1089 was formed in August of 1946 with assistance from the Jacksonville Post #279 and Frank A. "Brick" Robinson. At the initial meeting held in the back room of the Franklin Bank, the first officers were elected. J. Miller Keplinger was Commander; Charles M. Watts, vice-commander, and Harvey Smith, adjutant.
The post had 69 charter members including 16 World War I veterans and 53 World War II veterans. On October 16, 1946, Post #1089 held its first official meeting in Marquette Hall. The dues were $3 for the year. The first member to pass away was Leonard Roach. The Post provided him with a military funeral. The Post continued to meet in Marquette Hall until 1949. In August of that year, their present building on Wyatts Street was purchased from Robert and Genevieve Nelson.
In order to honor Franklin's veterans who died in battle, Post #1089 constructed a monument in the village park in May 1969. The Legion and Auxiliary committees, which planned and participated in the building of the beautiful monument, included Lawrence Mills, Ted Stewart, Howard Boyer, Abraham Dodsworth, Joe Kingston, Gertrude Leadill, and Donna Rodgers.
An interesting fact about Post #1089 involves their flagpole. It was donated by Gov. Richard Ogilivie in 1972 when Charles Summers was helping remodel the Governor's Mansion. Summers learned that the flagpole was to be removed. Adjutant Robert Tannahill sent a written request to the governor and was told that the Legion could have it if they would remove it from the top of the mansion. In January 1973, Commander Marion Seymour, Adjutant Tannahill, and members Charles Summer and Bob Stewart were on the mansion top for three hours in 7 degree weather trying to remove the flagpole. They were later invited in to the Governor's kitchen for sandwiches and coffee. Despite the cold and wind, it was an experience the Legionaries will always remember.
The present office of Post #1089 are Commander Lawrence J. Long, Vice-Commander Robert H. Tannahill, Adjutant David E. Rawlings, Finance Officer Joseph Whalen, Service Officer Kenneth Junk, Chaplain Walter White, and Sergeant-at-Arms Robert Stewart.