A BRIEF POST HISTORY
The Sgt. William H. Harrison American Legion Post 190 was founded in the year 1945.
On May 5, 1945, the Post was granted a temporary Charter. On March 11, 1946, the National Commander of the American Legion issued the Post its permanent charter.
Charter members were: Jeremiah H. Green, Clarence Lee Bolden, Fred Bowser, Thomas Elliot, Landon Cecil Green, Thomas S. Spruill, George Tutt, Walter Edward Cartwright, James E. Jones, Rufus Flood, Miles L. Baker, Benjamin F. Branch, Thurman Twiddy, Earl Roots, James M. Watson, George W. Knight, Robert Saunders, Thurman Sparkman, and Joseph Lee Davis.
The first Commander of the Post 190 was Jeremiah H. Green who served two terms. It was during his term of office that Auxiliary Unit 190 was organized. The first President of Unit 190 was Josephine H. Green.
The Post named in honor of Sgt. William Henry Harrison, a Portsmouth native and machine gun sergeant, killed in action while serving with the 36th Infantry Regiment in Italy during World War II. He was cut down by German gunfire in a fierce battle while his regiment was serving as an attached unit of the 92nd Buffalo Infantry Division at Leghorn in the vicinity of the Serco River Valley. It was December 28, 1944 that Sgt Harrison met his death in the service of his country.
The Post began holding its meeting in Drew’s Hall, which was located on the corner of Chestnut and South Streets. Shortly after the Carver Homes Project, later Fredrick Military Academy and now the site of the Pines Residential Treatment Center, was built on Gosport Road, now Portsmouth Blvd, to relieve the World War II housing for Negroes. The Post then began holding its meeting in the public clubroom of the Carver Homes Project. In May of 1956, the Post acquired an old residence type structure at 2711 Peach Street, which were enlarged and refurbished, remaining there until August 31, 1973. Regular meeting were held on the 2nd and 3rd Monday of the Month.
On Monday evening, July 13, 1971, Cephas C. Wright, the incoming Commander, in his inaugural remarks emphasized the new administration’s chief goal is to BUILD! BUILD! BUILD!” To spark the action to realize a new Post home in the too distant future, his act was to appoint a building committee with Finance Officer William E. Copeland as chairman.
On August 31, 1973, the Post moved into its new home. The Commander at that time was the late Earl Gardner. The building was dedicated September 2, 1973. The impressive structure, adjacent to the site where the old home formerly stood, is considered one of the most beautiful and practical American Legion Post in the State.
From its beginning and continuing down to the present, Post 190 remains aware of and is conscientiously dedicated to the American Legion’s inculcation of a sense of individual obligation to the Community, State and Nation.