HISTORICAL POSTCARDS OF SPRINGFIELD, MISSOURI
American Legion Memorial Home
The American Legion Post 69 Goad-Ballinger Post celebrated its 75th anniversary in 1995. It was formed and the American Legion Home built in October of 1930. The building is located at the intersection of East Trafficway and Kimbrough Avenue at the Benton Avenue Viaduct. It is one of the oldest American Legion posts in the state.
Two American Legion posts, Goad and Ballinger merged in 1930 and moved to the new building on land obtained from the Frisco Railroad. The Goad Post was named after John M. Goad, the son of a prominent Springfield lawyer who was the first Greene County soldier to die in World War I. He was shot down in his airplane behind the German lines on June 27, 1918.
The first president of the Goad-Ballinger Post was Paul Frey. The Legion met a self-set goal of 1000 members for the opening of the American Legion Home. Sgt. Alvin York, a World War I hero, was present as a speaker at the opening.
A Last Man's Club was formed by members of the Goad-Ballinger post at the beginning of World War II. A bottle of champagne would be presented to the last surviving member. This happened in February of 1992 to V. Homer Wilson, who served as a seaman in the Navy. He was presented the champagne at age 97, but returned it to the post for the post museum.
The postcard shows what could be an architect's drawing of the American Legion Home. It is postmarked June 1, 1934. The name "American Legion Memorial Home" is visible on the front of the building.