PLAV History

At the conclusion of World War I, various groups of American veterans of Polish descent formed organizations for the purpose of maintaining and preserving the true spirit of fraternity and patriotism that arose from service in the Armed Forces of the United States and to perpetuate the friendships arising there from by mutual aid and cooperation in patriotic, charitable, educational and civic activities.

Another objective was to work for the liberation and establishment of a free and independent Poland as proposed by President Woodrow Wilson in his "Fourteen Points" for peace.

The most prominent of these organizations was The Alliance of Polish-American Veterans, headquartered in Chicago, Illinois and encompassing the States of Illinois, Ohio and Wisconsin. A similar organization with the same name operated in Michigan

On the east coast, covering the States of New York and New Jersey, the Polish Legion of the American Army grew and prospered.

The Chicago based unit held a provisional convention in December, 1920 at Falcons Hall. There the first "Central Administration" was elected, an insignia adopted and a constitutional committee appointed.

In September of 1921 that group held its first regular Convention. It changed its name to the Alliance of American Veterans of Polish Extraction. It also became one of the first organizations in the world to recognize the threat of Communism when it added a paragraph to the Preamble of its Constitution which still reads: "To combat the destructive propaganda of communism and other alien influences endeavoring to weaken or destroy our American institutions and democratic form of government."

In September of 1923, the Ladies Legion (Auxiliary) was formed. It added morality and materially enriched the organization which was dedicated to Americanism and the benefit of American veterans of Polish descent.

In 1930, the Alliance of American Veterans of Polish Extraction delegated its Commander, Stanley A. Halick, of Chicago Illinois, to attend the convention of the Polish Legion of the American Army, in New York City, for the purpose of consolidating both groups into a solid organization. Through correspondence and by personal visits, this cause was also taken up with the Michigan unit.

In September of 1931 the three organizations, the Alliance of Veterans of Polish Extraction, the Michigan unit, and the Polish Legion of the American Army met at a consolidation convention and united into one organization,

The Polish Legion of American Veterans - USA

On July 23, 1984, President Ronald Regan signed P.L.98-372, the Act of Congress that granted a Federal Charter to the Polish Legion of American Veterans, U.S.A.

In 1992 ethnic requirements of membership were dropped because of that National Charter.



Last modified: November 29, 2018

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