History of the Veterans Memorial Association of Shoshone County.
The year 1930 found two veteran's organizations, namely Gus Zoellner Post #36 American Legion at Kellogg, Idaho and Shoshone Post #1675 Veterans of Foreign Wars at Wallace, Idaho. Each wanting a building for their activities. The thought of a building seemed to each organization like the proverbial "pot of gold" at the end of the rainbow, always just out of reach. After Much dreaming and discussion by the members of these two posts, a joint meeting of these two organizations was held on July 12, 1930 at the city hall in Kellogg.
The meeting was called to order by Rex Gwinn, Commander of Gus Zoellner Post 36, American Legion, who addressed the meeting as follows: "That we, the ex-service men of Shoshone County should have a memorial in this county to the memory of departed soldiers, sailors, and marines of all wars; That the law provided that the State would furnish $1,000 toward such a memorial and that the law further provided that the County Commissioners could furnish additional money for memorial purposes. That the County Commissioners in this County were very friendly toward the ex-service men and that if they could unit on a plan for a memorial, the same could be successfully prosecuted before the Board of County Commissioners and a budget made to provide for the same."
After a general discussion by all, it was decided that the American Legion of Kellogg and the Veterans of Foreign Wars at Wallace unit for the purpose of building a memorial. This was the birth of a new organization.
Fast forward to 2004. A few veterans from different branches of service and different wars were sitting around having coffee and discussing world issues. It was brought up that there were no memorials to honor Frank Reasoner, a local Medal of Honor Recipient. After much discussion over different sessions of morning politics, it was decided that not only should a monument to 1st Lt. Reasoner should be erected, but that a memorial to all veterans of the Silver Valley could be built. It was decided that a Memorial Committee should be formed, and the first "official" meeting was called to order by Chairman Joe Hauser in 2005.
Through the efforts of the Silver Valley Memorial Committee, a 155mm Howitzer was obtained through the Gus Zoellner, American Legion Post 36 and through the work the work of many volunteers, was restored and placed on a concrete pad on land donated by the city of Kellogg. The site was dedicated on Veterans Day, November 11, 2005 at 11:00 o'clock.
The next phase in this project will be to place a foundation around the entire site. This will be accomplished as soon as the weather warms up this spring, 2007.
A concept drawing of what the site may look like when completed.
The project is being supported and funded locally through donations, raffles, sales of bottled water, and now the sale of personalized memorial tiles. Besides the Silver Valley Veterans Committee, the project is also supported by:
Gus Zoellner Post 36, American Legion
Shoshone Post 1675, Veterans of Foreign Wars
Silver Valley Detachment of Marine Corp. League
Post 2005, AMVETS
A list of local business that have contributed to this project will be on-line soon. Our sincere thank you to all of them and to the individuals who have donated.