The American Legion Family
Together, members of The American Legion, The American Legion Auxiliary and the Sons of The American Legion make up what is known as The Legion Family. All three organizations place high importance on preserving our American traditions and values, improving the quality of life for our nation’s children, caring for veterans and their families, and perhaps most importantly, teaching the fundamentals of good citizenship.
The American Legion
The American Legion (TAL) was chartered by Congress in 1919 as a patriotic, war-time veterans’ organization, devoted to mutual helpfulness. It is a community-service organization which now numbers nearly 3 million members, men, and women, in nearly 15,000 American Legion posts worldwide. These posts are organized into 55 departments — one each for the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, France, Mexico, and the Philippines.
The American Legion’s national headquarters is in Indianapolis, with additional offices in Washington, DC. The Department of Iowa headquarters is located in Des Moines, Iowa. The Department Service Office is located in the Federal Building in Des Moines.
The American Legion Auxiliary
The American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) is a U.S.-headquartered patriotic service organization for women interested in voluntary service. It is a non-profit organization, affiliated with The American Legion (a veterans’ service organization). There are nearly one million Auxiliary members in 10,100 communities across the world.
The American Legion Auxiliary is an organization with dedicated, empowered women across the world, who are devoted to America’s veterans (current and past) and children and youth, with the notion of inspiring Auxiliary members’ communities.
The American Legion Auxiliary is responsible for programs such as Girls State, Girls Nation, Freedoms Foundation, educational scholarships and is a national co-sponsor of the National Veterans Creative Arts Festival.
The Sons of The American Legion
The Sons of The American Legion (SAL) was created in 1932 as an organization within The American Legion. The S.A.L. is made up of boys and men of all ages whose parents or grandparents served in the United States military and became eligible for membership in The American Legion.
The Sons organize into detachments at the state level and squadrons at the local level. A squadron pairs with a local American Legion post; a squadron’s charter is contingent upon its parent post’s charter. However, squadrons can determine the extent of their services to the community, state, and nation. They are permitted flexibility in planning programs and activities to meet their needs but must remember S.A.L.’s mission: to strengthen the four pillars of The American Legion.
The Preamble to the Constitution of The American Legion
For God and Country, we associate ourselves together for the following purposes: To uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America; to maintain law and order; to foster and perpetuate a one hundred percent Americanism; to preserve the memories and incidents of our associations in the Great Wars; to inculcate a sense of individual obligation to the community, state and nation; to combat the autocracy of both the classes and the masses; to make right the master of might; to promote peace and goodwill on earth; to safeguard and transmit to Posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy; to consecrate and sanctify our comradeship by our devotion to mutual helpfulness.