In March, 1919, Arthur C. Herman paid his first dues to the newly-formed Legion at the caucus in Paris, France
The West Salem American Legion Berg-Hemker-Olson Post 51 derives its namesake from West Salem natives who were honored for their service and sacrifice to their country and the Village of West Salem. Post 51 was initially named after Private Alex J. Berg, Co. B, 128th Infantry, who died March 14, 1918 in World War I. Later, the names of Private First Class Adolph Hemker who died on March 15, 1944 in the South Pacific during World War II, and Corporal Thomas Olson who died on March 27, 1971, Vietnam, were added.
West Salem Post 51 proudly displays and cares for the Congressional Medal of Honor, posthumously awarded to Private First Class Stanley R. Christianson, who died on September 26, 1950 during the Korean War.
The American Legion, Alex J. Berg Post 51 Charter membership roll had 54 names. Prior to the purchase of the permanent clubhouse, the membership met at the old West Salem Village Hall.
Milton Michaelson wast the first Post 51 Commander in 1921. We proudly display the pictures of all past and current Commanders and Presidents as they have all contributed to help make out community a better place to live.
Forty four members contributed funds toward a building fund to buy the first Legion clubhouse. On June 1, 1945, the Alex J. Berg Post 51 Building Fund Pledge purchased the first clubhouse which was located at 130 South Leonard Street. This building still stands today and is owned by the West Salem Insurance Agency. In 1966, Post 51 purchased and moved into its current location at 148 South Leonard Street.
In Village Park, the original World War I Memorial was restored and renamed the Veterans Memorial Court of Honor by committee dedication in 1994. The Court of Honor was constructed and is maintained by the American Legion and honors all service members native to West Salem.
In Village Park on Memorial Day we honor all service men and women who have served.
Our American Legion family is made of the American Legion, the American Legion Auxiliary, the Junior Auxiliary and the Sons of American Legion. In the spring of each year, the Legion, Auxiliary and S.A.L are recognized at the Past Commanders / Past Presidents Banquet for their contributions.
The Legion Auxiliary is comprised of senior ladies who are spouses, mothers, sisters and female dependents. The Junior Auxiliary is made of young women who are daughters of veterans and under 18 years of age. The Auxiliary was chartered in 1926 as the Alex J. Berg Unit 51 and in 1978 was recharged under Berg-Hemker-Olson Unit 51.
The Sons of American Legion are made of male dependents of eligible veterans. S.A.L was chartered in 1984 under Berg-Hemker-Olson Squadron 51.
In 2012, the Berg-Hemker-Olson Post 51 began its American Legion Baseball program continuing its commitment to the community. We have welcomed the initiative of the Friends of West Salem Baseball in making this program a success. Post 51 currently fields two American Legion teams – 18U and 16U.
The American Legion is known for offering the following scholarships to local eligible students: Oratorical Scholarship Program, Badger Boys in Ripon and Badger Girls in Oshkosh. For more information on the American Legion scholarships visit: http://www.wilegion.org/page/content/programs/scholarships-and-awards.
The West Salem American Legion Berg-Hemker-Olson Post 51 welcomes everyone as guests to our establishment. Please take a look at our calendar and posted signs for meals and dinners on Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays. Our bar is open to the public as well. Please stop in.
Veterans still serving America!