American Legion Post 124 was formed in 1919 and held their first four meetings in the Old Town Hall. The chapter then moved to the top of the Park’s Block using Red Man’s Hall. The next move would place the post in its permanent home – 38 Broad Street.
Built in 1873 by a local contractor Noah Strong. The building was originally designed as a residence. H. B. Smith owned the building for a short time before the Town of Westfield purchased it in 1909. From 1911 to 1917 it was used by the school department as the Boy’s Trade School.
In 1919 during Westfield’s 250th Anniversary celebration it was turned into a historic museum by the Town. While most rooms were used to display the furniture and articles of daily life of Westfield’s families, the main exhibit was called the “Museum Room”. How fitting it is that this area was dedicated to the relics of the City’s earliest connection with military conflicts. There were documents and mementos relating to the families of Westfield in connection to the French and Indian Wars, the American Revolution, and the War of 1812. Also included were swords and guns from the Civil War and souvenirs from the Spanish American War in Cuba. Also included were items from the recently ended World War I. The City’s first mayor, George Searle, in conjunction with the school department leased the building to the Legion. In 1928 Mayor Harry Putnam had the stable removed and the second floor made into a meeting hall. Post 124 finally purchased the site from the city in 1962.
This site has housed a school and a museum. Our work continues these services for the community by granting scholarships and maintaining the traditions and values of our military. And for all the years and changes the building has again become a residence. Though we may not be the type of family it was originally designed for we are a group united in our love of city and country.