Post Legacy

In 1933 a veteran by the name of William Gunther formed the American Legion post in Arbutus with the help of Robert Bedford who at the time was a member of Catonsville Post #25.

The first meeting was held in March of 1933 and William Gunther was elected Commander along with a slate of officers to serve from March to July. In July, Mr. Gunther was re-elected to the position of Commander to serve from July 1933 to July 1934. In July of 1934 Harry Ashby was elected as Commander to serve from July 1934 to July 1935. In the early part of 1935 Mr. Ashby passed away. George Shinnamon, being the 1st Vice Commander at the time, moved up to the position of Commander. At the completion of the partial term, Mr. Shinnamon was re-elected as Commander to serve from 1935 to 1936. Again in 1936, Mr. Shinnamon was re-elected to serve from 1936 to 1937. Up until the time of his death in 1985, Mr. Shinnamon was a very active member of the post.

The name of the post was selected as Dewey Lowman. Dewey Lowman and William Gunther were very good friends. Dewey Lowman lived in Morrell Park and later with his parents moved to Leedsville, which was located a little below Maiden Choice Lane. In the beginning of WW1 Dewey Lowman joined the Navy and was assigned to the USS Cyclops as a seaman. The Cyclops was a collier and turned out to be one of the mysteries of WW1. The Cyclops vanished without a trace of debris or had transmitted any radio S.O.S. signal. All hands on board were reported as lost. Around the year 1979, the Cyclops was located by Navy divers at the bottom of the ocean in the Bermuda Triangle with no visible damage to the hull.

The first meeting was held in the Arbutus Community Hall on Linden Avenue where the Fire Department is now located. Next was the Elementary School on Sulphur Spring Road. Then they met over the A&P on Francis Avenue and then to Spindler’s Hall, and later to Minhart’s and then to Mineral Avenue. In August of 1949, we moved to our present location on Leeds Avenue. In 1954, a new hall was added to the existing building at the cost of $12,000. Then in 1960 the lounge area was completely renovated at the cost of $26,000. In 50 years, we have advanced from the forming of an American Legion post to approximately 1500 members.

The above is from a paper done for the post’s 50th anniversary in 1983.  Former Past Commander George Shinnamon documented the history of Dewey Lowman Post 109.