Northern Zone of the Western Command of the Royal Canadian Legion

Today, US Branch 25 is one of four branches in the Western US International Zone (and all four branches are based in California).  However, at one point in time US Branch 25 was a part of the Northern Zone of the Western Command of the Royal Canadian Legion. As you can see from the flag below, there were 13 branches that formed this zone.

Now in a speech Past President, Comrade Rutledge, gave a few years back, he indicated:

Posts were in Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Texas, Utah and Washington states.

Sixteen in California alone: Culver City, Fresno, Gardena, Glendale, Palm Springs, Sacramento, San Diego, Santa Barbara, Van Nuys, and West Covina.

And here in the bay area Berkeley, Oakland, Petaluma, Redwood City, and San Francisco.

Now on the flag the following branch numbers are represented:

15 Oakland
19 Sacramento
25 San Francisco
31 Fresno (“Vimy”)
48 Alameda
52 Peninsula (“Maple Leaf”) / Redwood City
57 Petaluma
113 Berkeley
114 Hayward
126 Santa Cruz
138 Contra Costa
161 San Mateo
171 ??

Most of the branches were connected by Comrade Charlie Martin and his wife Holly Martin.  In his research, he noted a 1931 Sacramento Bee article that referenced 16 posts and 3500 members in California at the time.  Comrade Martin and his wife also identified Post 10 – Los Angeles from a 1931 article in the LA Times, as well as Post 29 in Ventura and Post 12 in Santa Barbara from a 1932 article in the Ventura Star.

Finally, Comrade Martin noted that an October 1951 article from the Oakland Tribune noted the “newly founded San Mateo Post 161.”  Also, the flag still bears the crest of the Canadian Legion of the British Empire Services League, which was in use until 1953.  This means that the flag was produced sometime between 1951 and 1953.

As an aside, a description of an archive collection of documents from 1939-43 at the Bancroft Library reads:

Canadian Legion posts in California including: Contra Costa (Post No. 138), Marin County (Post No. 30), Oakland (Post No. 15), Peninsula (Post No. 52), San Jose (Post No. 35), Petaluma (Post No. 57), Hayward (Post No. 114), and Stockton (Post No. 34).

So in addition to the 13 branches represented on the flag, there were at least an additional three branches in the Bay Area only a decade earlier (i.e., the ones in bold above) – for a total of 16 branches in the Northern California region.

By the way, if anyone knows where Post 171 was located, please reach out to us.

1 thought on “Northern Zone of the Western Command of the Royal Canadian Legion

  1. Pingback: Documenting Our History | Royal Canadian Legion, US Branch #25

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