American Legion Auxiliary

Preamble

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 per cent Americanism;
To preserve the memories and incidents of our associations during 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 good will on earth;
To safeguard and transmit to posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy;
To participate in and to contribute to the accomplishment of the aims and purposes of The American Legion;
To consecrate and sanctify our association by our devotion to mutual helpfulness.


History of the Dike Unit of American Legion Auxiliary

By Mrs. E. P. Tobias

Dike Unit No. 471 of the American Legion Auxiliary made application for their charter Dec. 6, 1922. It was about the slickest, slipperiest night the writer can recall, that Sigfred Stage, Post Commander, and Chris Langskov, Post Adjutant, had set for the meeting in the town's community hall, in a room over what is now the Vic Hansen Electrical Shop. Mrs. Minnie Dubbert of Cedar Falls, district president, came to Dike to help organize the Dike Unit. The following ten signed that night for the charter members and five more signed later for the required fifteen: Mrs. Sigfred Stage, Mrs. Hans M. Hansen, Mrs. Edward Ove, Mrs. E. P. Tobias, Mrs. Jeppe Schultz, Mrs. Dave Lynn, Mrs. Floyd Lee, Mrs. John Squier, Mrs. Godfrey Juhl and Mrs. Henry Struntze.

All except Mrs. Squier, deceased, Mrs. Lee and Mrs. Juhl are still on our Unit membership roll.

A temporary charter was received June 1923, and a permanent charter in August 1923. The first officers were Mrs. E. P. Tobias, president; Mrs. John Deadrick, vice pres.; Mrs. Jeppe Schultz, secy.; and Mrs. Henry Struntze, treasurer.

The first years, members were all young wives or mothers of World War I boys and meetings were held in the homes, with usually more youngsters than grownups in attendance. Altho there was much confusion, a great deal of work was accomplished.

Starting Feb. 14, 1930, meetings were held in the hall purchased by the Legion, which was quite a relief for those who had been entertaining.

Now there is a repeat of those former days, for the wives of World War II boys come with their children to make the meetings more interesting.

The work of the Dike Unit has been carried out as Auxiliary Units all over the world have been doing. Work is divided into two classes, Child Welfare and Rehabilitation. Child Welfare--helping care for veterans' children and their families. The Dike Unit clothes an assigned child for a number of years. Clothing, quilts, etc., are sent to supply shelves to be given out when needed, send candy and gifts each year to the son of a deceased member who is in hospital in Independence, cash for toys for veterans' play schools, gather coffee labels for toys at children's hospitals, send boxed fruit and Magazines to Eldora training school.

Rehabilitation--helping the veterans themselves to make their lives a little brighter in the hospital and at home, the unit sends Christmas gifts, cash for entertainment, pay for canteen books, cigarettes, magazines, gifts for the Christmas gift shop, send entertainment for parties for the veterans, carpet rags for rug weaving, sell the Memorial poppy every year that are made by the handicapped veterans, help keep the cookie jar filled at the hospitals and many other things.

In community service work the Auxiliary has put a $165 slide in the town park, built a camp stove, planted trees, donated to the Scouts, band fund, donated flags and flag codes to Dike and Stout schools, poppy poster contest prizes, and Americanism essay contests, for last 13 years given history medal to most outstanding history student in Jr. high, contribute to the Red Cross, Cancer Fund, CROP, T.B., Salvation Army, Boys Town, etc.

Members of the unit work hard to carry on the different projects. Have charge of carnival stands, magazine drives, Commercial Club and Elevator dinners, serving as high as 400 most of the time. Perhaps the Unit's biggest project was the lunch stand at the National Cornhusking Contest in 1932. A half barrel of hamburger was served and the rest of food in accordance.

Considerable money has been spent on kitchen equipment for the Hall, such as dishes, silverware, six burner bottle gas range, hot water heater, electric ovens and many smaller articles. Also helped the Post with decorating expenses, drapes, etc.

All boys from this vicinity who were in service were remembered with Christmas and all occasion cards. In 1949 the Unit arranged for Mr. and Mrs. Charles Posekaney and Mrs. Hans M. Hansen to talk to their sons overseas by tape recording over KAYX.

For years, Washington's Birthday and Armistice Day have been observed at a potluck supper and program, with teachers of the Dike school as honored guests. A Flag Day Tea and program are held each year with flower exhibit and prizes. An annual picnic is held in the Dike park for Legion and Auxiliary members and families, at which time Legionaires consume gallons of ice cream.

For a number of years the Auxiliary decorated the church for Memorial Day services, with joint meeting; in later years the Legion and Auxiliary has sponsored a program at the Legion Hall for the public, with a Memorial Day speaker.

Each year the Auxiliary sends a girl to Girls' State at Grinnell, where they learn first hand of the government of the state and nation.

The Dike Auxiliary is classed as a superior unit by the Iowa Department. Officers and members keep well posted on the work required by attending county, district and national conventions. The last national convention was attended by three of the members, Mrs. Al Frenzen, Mrs. Ed Kappelman and Mrs. LeRoy Ditzler.

National, State and County officers have been elected from the Dike unit members. Mrs. R. M. Cullison has been national page, 3rd district president, 3rd district page and county president. Mrs. E. K. Andersen has been 3rd district page, 3rd district secretary and county president. Mrs. E. P. Tobias has been county president, county secretary and treasurer twice. Mrs. I. B. Middlekauff has been county president, Mrs. Dave Lynn and Mrs. Jennie Engel have each been county secretary and treasurer.

The past presidents of the Unit organized a parley in 1930 with Mrs. H. E. Struntze as the president. The list of past unit presidents and the order in which they served are: Mrs. E. P. Tobias, Mrs. Sigfred Stage, Mrs. Marius Andersen, Mrs. H. E. Struntze, Mrs. A. F. Deadrick, Mrs. Martin Matinusen, Mrs. E. K. Andersen, Mrs. R. M. Cullison, Mrs. Al Frenzen, Mrs. Owen Campbell, Mrs. Dave Lynn, Mrs. Herman Nielsen, Mrs. Jennie Engel, Mrs. V. A. Paige, Mrs. Ed Kappelman, Mrs. Carl Damm, Mrs. Bernard Ove, Mrs. Lowell Reeser, Mrs. Vernie Cox, Mrs. James F. Petersen, Mrs. I. B. Middlekauff, Mrs. Leonard Posekaney and Mrs. Robert Hansen.

Unit secretaries: Mrs. Jeppe Schultz, Mrs. Dave Lynn, Mrs. Godfrey Juhl, Mrs. E. K. Andersen, Mrs. R. M. Cullison, Mrs. James Juhl, Mrs. Tom Hansen, Mrs. Al Frenzen, Mrs. Jennie Engel, Mrs. Herman Nielsen, Mrs. E. P. Tobias, Mrs. Elvin Sloth.

Treasurers: Mrs. H. E. Struntze, serving three years; Mrs. E. P. Tobias, 5 years; Mrs. A. F. Deadrick, seven years; Mrs. E. K. Andersen, four years; Mrs. Carl Damm, three years; Mrs. I. B. Middlekauff, one year; Mrs. Al Frenzen, one year; Mrs. Gordon Sloth, two years and Mrs. Bernard Ove, one year.

At the present time the Dike Unit has a membership of 98. Meetings are held on the first Friday of each month. A committee of four served a 10¢ lunch to the members and to the Post members.

Four members are deceased, Mrs. John Squier, Mrs. James Thomas and Miss Stena Jensen.

--The Grundy Register (Grundy Center, Iowa), 25 May 1950, Dike Golden Jubilee Section of the Grundy Register