“Greatest Legislation” traveling museum exhibit opens at Iowa Gold
The American Legion Department of Iowa to host special event.
The Iowa Gold Star Museum welcomes “The Greatest Legislation: An
American Legion Centennial Salute to the GI Bill” to Camp Dodge, May 4
through June 15. The multimedia exhibit features illustrated panels,
touch-screen video kiosks and rare artifacts that depict the crisis,
drama, solution, effects and ongoing success of the GI Bill.
An opening reception to welcome the exhibit is planned for Tuesday,
May 15, at 5:30 p.m. Hosted by The American Legion Department of Iowa,
free refreshments will be served and the reception will include remarks
by Brigadier General Randy Greenwood,Quartermaster, IA National Guard
and David K. Rehbein, chairman of The American Legion’s 100th
Anniversary Observance Committee and a past national commander of the
nation’s largest veterans organization. Following his remarks, visitors
will be offered the opportunity to share their GI Bill stories.
Drafted by American Legion Past National Commander Harry W. Colmery
in December 1943, at a time when medically disabled World War II GIs
were coming home at a rate of about 75,000 per month, the Servicemen’s
Readjustment Act of 1944 was written to provide support to veterans in a
difficult economic time. The long-term effect of the GI Bill is that it
transformed the U.S. economy and culture for decades.
The GI Bill is often characterized as the most significant social
legislation of the 20th century. It is credited for preventing an
economic catastrophe after World War II, making home ownership a
reasonable expectation for average Americans, educating millions of
veterans and creating an incentive to serve in the military so valuable
that the United States has operated as an all-volunteer force since
The traveling exhibit is part of The American Legion’s centennial
program and is scheduled to be on display at the Iowa Gold Star Museum
until June 15.