Post 137 - Unknown Soldier
Post 137, in Darien, was permanently chartered March 20, 1935. Our first Commander was W.H. Graham. Though not a Georgia native, he eagerly adopted McIntosh County as his permanent home. As commander, Graham embarked on the daunting task of naming our newly founded post. Since no native son of the County lost his life in WWI we were without a name sake. It was at the suggestion of Colonel Tillinghast L. Huston; noted engineer, retired regular Army and owner of historic Butler Island, we adopt the name of “UNKNOWN SOLDIER”. This unique, and inspiring name was proposed at a following meeting and was immediately adopted.
In August 1945 membership blossomed and Veterans of WWII began taking an active part in the affairs of the Legion. Many projects and programs were initiated to benefit veterans, families and the community, including child welfare. Early members also worked on finding a suitable meeting place.
In 1948, a Building Committee was formed to acquire our first home. Funding was obtained by a challenge from R.J. Reynolds. He matched, dollar for dollar, all membership revenue collected through September 1, 1949, up to $10,000.00. Unknown Soldier Post #137 exceeded that goal! With this generous donation and strong membership we were able to secure a site and construct our new home. On April 13, 1950 we proudly dedicated our new Post. Located in downtown Darien on Hwy. 17; now the Land Use and Registrar of Voters Building, we operated here for over 2 decades. The building was sold upon the completion of I-95 in the early 1970's. Vic’s Truck Stop Café, located 2.8 miles north of town on Hwy. 17, was purchased. However, unable to be maintain the property properly, it was sold in mid-1974. For almost 20 years we served the community from several locations, until we found our current home. In 1990, we searched for a new building site to construct a new Post. A 2.18 acres lot, on Blount’s Crossing, was purchased and the building project was underway. After 2 years of anticipation, 1992 marked the completion of our new and current American Legion canteen on Blount’s Crossing.
The women's Auxiliary Unit Charter was presented to the membership in May 1936, but disbanded shortly thereafter. The Unit was reactivated between 1955 and 1989. The Auxiliary is a highly regarded and respected partner of the Post’s operations. It sponsors numerous fundraisers and leads the annual Poppy program.
The first delegates sent to Boys’ State were in 1946. Our most recent candidate was sponsored in 2018.
A girl was sent to Girls’ State in 1949. The Auxiliary sponsored two candidates in 2019.
Our Sons of the American Legion Squadron had its Charter issued in July 5, 2012. It currently has its highest membership. The Sons provide a much needed helping hand to us Legionnaires.
The latest addition to the Post's family is our Riders Chapter, chartered March 23, 2019. The Riders provide a social atmosphere for our members who share the same interest. They promote ad support programs of the American Legion along with motorcycle safety and education.
"There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up."
- John Holmes
The American Legion is a nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization with great political influence perpetuated by its grass-roots involvement in the legislation process from local districts to Capitol Hill. Legionnaires’ sense of obligation to community, state and nation drives an honest advocacy for veterans. The Legion stands behind the issues most important to the nation's veterans community, backed by resolutions passed by volunteer leadership.
Build an involved membership to help benefit veterans from all branches of the service. Educate and involve the community about our organization. Out reach to the younger generation to promote patriotism, education, and service.