11 NOVEMBER 2019, BELLEVILLE, NJ - American Legion Post 105, located on Washington Avenue in Belleville, celebrated its centennial on 10 November 2019, which fell on Veterans Day weekend. The theme for this 100-year celebration is “Legacy and Vision” - a celebration of past accomplishments and a renewal of the organization’s resolve to serve communities, states and the nation for a second century. Post 105 was chartered on 9 September 1919 by 24 sons of Belleville who returned from the First World War, making it one of the older posts still active within The American Legion.
The Legion, an organization made up of our country’s veterans, was established by officers and men of the American Expeditionary Force on 15 March 1919 in Paris, and was federally chartered on 16 September 1919 by the United States Congress. The Legion celebrated 2019 nationally as its centennial year.
In an event sponsored and coordinated by Sons of The American Legion Squadron 105, over 80 veterans, family members, members of the American Legion Family and community supporters in attendance, the Legion Hall was packed. Flanked by historical memorabilia from Post 105’s past, including that original charter signed in 1919, Post Commander Richard Hult served as master of ceremonies.
Following a wreath-laying outside the post by officers of Post 105 commemorating 100 years of The American Legion in Belleville, Mayor Michael Melham said a few heartfelt words commemorating the day. His father being a member of Disabled American Veterans who has since passed, the mayor spoke very emotionally about the importance of organizations like the Legion, and reiterated the commitment of the township in supporting her veterans. He then concluded with reading and presenting a proclamation from the town. A proclamation was also presented from Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo Jr., as was a resolution from the State of New Jersey.
Ending the event in a very fitting and touching manner, the Emerald Society Pipe and Drum Corps played a few patriotic songs, including God Bless America and Amazing Grace.
Attendees celebrated after the conclusion of the ceremony by food provided by our very generous Belleville eateries, as well as from restaurants throughout the area.