Comrade Al Emerson, Mayor Al Klassen, Comrade Henry Johnson
Collaboration with the Town of Central Butte, 2014
The original Legion in Central Butte was the Great War Veterans
Association of the very early 1920s. Meetings were held in the old Chinese
laundry next to the livery barn with Bert Alcock as president and Vern Detlor
The first November eleventh banquet was held in Charlie Mulholland's house. Later the banquet was moved to the hotel with Riverhurst, Lawson, and Mawer veterans taking part. A Legion was then formed which took in Riverhurst, Lawson and Central Butte; it was called Coronation Branch #213 of the Canadian Legion British Empire Service League. Meetings were held alternately at Riverhurst, Lawson, and Central Butte. It was customary to have a banquet and dance on November eleventh and proceeds would be donated to the Central Butte hospital.
Members during these years included:F.L.H. Cook, O.L. Reid, W.H. Ellerton, P. Reindeau, R.S. Hemsworth, R.E. Wilson, James Clarke, J.H. Brice, V.T. Detlor, A.E. Alcock, J.L. Newton, W.S. Downing, J. McAllister, H.H. Fellows.
Following the Second World War, Central Butte and Riverhurst formed their own branches and Central Butte kept the name of Coronation. A.E. Alcock was the president and W.S. Downing the secretary. Forty-one veterans joined the branch in the fall of 1946 and the spring of 1947 as follows: R.A. Allin, A.A. Berry, W.E. Berry, L.G. Bradford, H.A. Benson, B. Berger, H.E. Cook, A. Clubbe, F.C. Crane, G.E. Caldwell, J.B. Evans, O.C. Ellerman, C.A. Emerson, G.R. Gould, A.R. Gower, W.S. Hemsworth, O.R. Harris, M.C. Hodgson, C.W.K. Hilliar, N.L. Hutton, A.G. Kappelar, F. Kappelar, F. Klassen, A.M. Marjerison, W.R. Mulholland, P.E. Mulholland, A.G. Mulholland, H.M. Marzolf, A.R. McGillivray, H. Neal, T.H. Neal, L.A. Olson, W.I. Payne, H.H. Runions, R.J. Stewart, C.D. Stewart, A. Schwerin, R.J. Wilson, P.R. Young, L.T. Zachow.
Meetings were held above the old drug store, but a new Legion building was needed and in 1947 Dufton School was bought and moved to its present site. In 1948 a twenty foot addition was added to the front and it was put on a cement foundation. Money needed was raised by Saturday night dances, auctions, and donations from members and interested people of the community. Various improvements were added and in 1951 a hardwood floor was put in. Dances and rentals were the chief source of revenue.
In 1954 a Ladies Auxiliary to the Legion was formed with Ethel Mulholland as president and Benny Foord as secretary. For many years, membership consisted of twenty or more members. The group was very busy, catering for banquets and hosting social events of their own, so their cash contrbutions were significant to the finances of the Legion. They also worked cosely with Legion members on any activities planned or in progress. As membership in the Auxilliary declined, the group found it more difficult to carry on and it finally decided to disband.
In the winter of 1962 the stage in the hall was removed and a kitchen built with cupboards, sink and an oil range. That same year it was decided to change the name of the branch from Coronation to Central Butte Branch.
A need for better hall facilities in 1968 varied from a new building, a Lions' project involving a community centre, a side addition, renovating our present building, or to putting in a full basement. In 1970 outside steps were removed, a street level entrance put in, lavatories installed, cloakroom and an oil furnace. In 1976 a 16' x 60' addition was added with a gas furnace, storeroom, bar, carpeting, and arm chairs.
In 1972 Associates (sons and daughters of veterans) were admitted as Legion members and eight joined at this time. Spouses, widows and widowers of members may also become Associate Members as of 1982.
In 2006, there were 32 paid members, and a few pending. New kitchen appliances, counter tops and cabinets have been installed in the kitchen and bar. A new steel wheelchair ramp was installed in 2015. As of today, our branch has 60 members and remains financially strong.
Our branch has continued to be an integral part of our great communitiy by providing a meeting place and to provide support for all our vets, famiies, and the entire community. Through members' hard work and various fund raisers, the legion has donated thousands of dollars to Central Butte and the surrounding community.
Material on this page sourced from "Our Heritage - A View From the Butte"
and from the 2014 Centennial Newspaper.