American Legion Harvey R Hansen Post 310 Racine, WI

Post 310 History

The Harvey R. Hansen Post 310, which currently has more than 200 members, was technically established after World War II and is named in honor of local Navy enlistee who was killed while in combat at Pearl Harbor. But a chapter it was spun out of, the disbanded American Legion Post 76, was established in 1919, just as similar chapters were sprouting up across the U.S. after World War I.

In the Racine area, Posts 76 and 310 coexisted for more than three decades. The former officially disbanded in the early 1980s with all of its records, artifacts and other important assets folded into Post 310. 

Steve Anderson, a Post 310 member who holds the distinction of being the post’s historian, said he remains steadfast in ensuring that Post 76’s legacy is not forgotten.

Regardless of the post number, the American Legion’s spirit of influence has been a constant in the Racine area over the past century.

One of the earliest contributions came to fruition early on in the group’s existence when members of Post 76 raised a substantial amount of funds for the construction of Memorial Hall, which was built over several years, beginning in 1923.

The past and present political leaders who have stepped foot into Memorial Hall, either while campaigning or in office, includes George H.W. Bush, Hubert Humphrey, John F. Kennedy, Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump.

Another early contribution from the local Legion is The Boys of 76 parade float, which is one of the longest, continuous parade floats in America.

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In more recent decades, Post 310 has left its mark on a number of community activities, many designed to bridge intergenerational gaps.

Post 310 has sponsored local students for Badger Boys State, a civics education and model government program, for more than 60 years. The local Legion Auxiliary had also sponsored local girls for the Legion’s Girls State program.

Post 310 has also provided support to the Racine Youth Baseball organization for multiple decades.

Another hallmark of Post 310’s community influence has been Racine County Youth Day, which gives youth a glimpse into local government and how it functions. 

Other examples of Post 310’s influence includes the annual chili supper, held each December for the community to commemorate Pearl Harbor and financial contributions, along with other local veteran organizations, to help bring the Vietnam Moving Wall to Racine. Most recently the wall was on local display in May at Pritchard Park.

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