Dept. of Mississippi History Timeline
Department of Mississippi
American Legion Auxiliary
Both the National Commander, Mr. Donald Johnson, and National President, Mrs. Walter Andrews, visited Mississippi at the same time on March 19,
1965, at Vicksburg.

Both the Boys State Governor, Eddie Wilmesherr, and Girls State Governor, Mary Allen Bowen, hailed from McComb.

Miss Inez Goff of Greenwood received Mississippi’s first National President’s Scholarship Award of $1,000.

Mrs. J. V. Holliday, having served on National Committees in past years and currently on the National Americanism Committee, and who served as
Southern Division Vice President in 1958, was endorsed by the Department for National President.

Mississippi reached it 100% membership goal with 4,420 members on March 4, 1966, and placed 3rd nationally.

Mrs. Louise Clarke Manship became the American Legion Auxiliary’s first recipient of the coveted Distinguished Service Award of The American
Legion, Dept. of Mississippi.  She has been a member of the Legion since 1919, a WWI Red Cross nurse, and member of the Auxiliary since 1933.

Eighty Units reported a special program on Americanism was held.

Mrs. H. Milton Davidson, National President, appointed Mrs. J. W. Flowers of Vicksburg, to serve as chairman of the National Area “C” Girls State

Senior and junior members participated in the “We Care” program, giving aid to the victims of Hurricane Camille.

Mrs. T. K. Webb was nominated and elected Department President for 1969-70.  She accepted with “deep and sincere emotions,” and then
graciously resigned, thus establishing the honor of having been elected Dept. President.  Mrs. Martha Neal was then regularly elected President for
the year.

Mrs. Clyde Hamilton was endorsed for Southern Vice President when it was Mississippi’s turn to provide for this office.

Mrs. Pauline Holmes was elected Mississippi’s first African-American Department President.  She was also appointed National Music Chairman in


Miss Traci Owen, a junior member of Unit 165 in Cleveland, received the Jerry Nicholson Award for her volunteer work with St. Jude's Hospital, the
highest award any young volunteer could receive.  It was presented to her by actor Danny Thomas and covered in the Nov.-Dec. issue of The
National News.  

This year had 97 units, with 62 making membership goal.

Connie Shows was presented with the National Legislative Award.


Mississippi Juniors were organized on the Department level, and an election of officers was held.  A junior delegate to National Convention was also


Jeannette Ghetti  served as National Americanism Chairman.  


Mississippi had its first National Commander from Mississippi, Mr. James (Jimmy) Dean, who was nominated and installed at National Convention in
Cincinnati, Ohio.

Mississippi has 101 units during this year.

Magnolia Girls State moved its yearly session to The University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg.


Inez McCain of Cleveland served as Southern Division National Vice President.  Mrs. Jeanette Ghetti served as National Education Chairman.

The Dorothy Pearl Civil Preparedness Trophy awarded to Connie Shows, Dept. Chairman of National Security, for involving the most outside
organizations in the the Dept. National Security Forum.

Veterans Appreciation Day on Oct. 17 was the day the stadium in Jackson was named "Mississippi Veterans Memorial Stadium," complete with
festivities and honors for veterans--including a football game between the University of Southern Mississippi and Mississippi State University.


Jeanette Ghetti, PDP, served as National Leadership Chairman.  Gladys Bassett served as National Field Service Director.


Laurel Unit 11 presented Dept. President Russo with framed and matted news clippings from 1946, including a picture of Mrs. W. E. Hunt, PDP, to
be hung in the Cavalcade of Memories in the Dept. Headquarters.
Stay tuned...more history to come as research continues!