La Societe des Quarante Hommes at Huit Chevaux, an independent fraternal organization of veterans, popularly known as the FORTY & EIGHT, was organized in 1920 by American Legionnaires as a fun and honor society.
Now composed of veterans of both World Wars and the Korean, Vietnam and Desert Storm conflicts, it draws its origin from World War I when young Americans were sent to France to fight a war to end all wars. The narrow gauge railroads of France had boxcars (Voitures) that carried little more than half the capacity of American boxcars and these voitures were used to transport the men and horses to and from the fighting fronts. On the side of these little boxcars was stenciled the capacity of each, holding either forty men or eight horses, and these voitures became the trademark of our organization. If one could laugh at the train ride from the coast of France to the trenches crowded in these little boxcars only recently vacated by eight horses, one could surely adapt to the changes in his life when he returned home. Membership in the Forty & Eight is by invitation only for recognition of service to the American Legion and/or its programs.
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"For God and country we associate ourselves together for the following purposes: To create a charitable and non-profit veterans organization; to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America; to assist and promote the welfare and well being of those who have served or are now serving in the Armed Forces of the United States and their widows, widowers and orphans; to participate in all memorial services for and to be present at the funerals of departed comrades; to take part in and encourage others to participate in the proper observance of all days honoring veterans; to preserve the memories of our Service in the Armed Forces of our Country; to actively participate within our membership in projects relating to (a) the welfare of the children of America; (b) the health of our Nation by fostering a nurses training program; and (c) selected charitable endeavors."