History

The Harry E. Anderson Post 9545. Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States was established on July 19th, 1947. The Ladies Auxiliary was established on November 30th of the same year. The Post was named after Corporal Harry E Anderson, United States Marine Corps, who was the first casualty of World War II from Will County. Corporal Anderson was from the New Lenox area. There were 50 Charter Members of the VFW Post 9545 and 19 Charter Members of the Ladies Auxiliary.

The first meeting was held in Emily Hall which was located on the corner of Oak and Hickory Streets in New Lenox. For a few years, meetings were held at various members' homes and at the fire barn. A brick garage owned by C.L. Klausing located on Joliet Road and South Cedar was fixed up and used for meeting for the next few years. Later the basement of old St. Jude Church was located where the old library us to be.

In about 1956 the members built a house on Wood Street and Cooper Road. The house was sold with profits used to purchase about 12 acres of land on Vine Street now known as Veterans Park. The land was later sold.

In the late 50's, the land we now have was purchased. It had a farm house on it which remodeled for use as a post home. A hall was built next to the farm house in 1971. Our first fish fry was held on January 5, 1973 with 71 dinners sold. A bar and a kitchen were added to the hall and the farm house torn down in 1976. Seven years later in 1983 the Pavilion was built In mid 1994 a major addition to the hall was started. It included additional hall space, handicapped accessible bathrooms, and additional storage. The addition was completed in early 1995.

On September 12, 1995 our post home was completely destroyed by fire. Rebuilding plans began almost immediately and two trailers served as our post home while the new building was being constructed. On November 19, 1996 our new post home was opened with the first fish fry on December 6, 1996. The new building was formally dedicated on January 11, 1997.

-Ed Kadela-