La Societe - also known as the "Forty & Eight" is an independent fraternal organization of Veterans. Established in 1920 by members of the American Legion as a fun and honor society, Forty & Eight's founders based the organization on their Military experiences in World War 1 in France. The box car of the Frencg railways, which carried forty men (quarante homes) or eight horses (huit chevaux) to the front, is the symbol of the organization. The numerals "40/8" on a triangle of French horizon blue is the logo of ......The Forty & Eight.
Forty & Eight's Child Welfare program was founded in 1923 to help children in physical distress. In the 1930's, the Forty & Eight lead a national effort to inoculate every child against Diphtheria, bearing the expense for thousands of destitute American children.
Today the Child Welfare program, in conjunction with the Charles W. Ardery Child Welfare Trust, expends more than $8,000,000 annually. Aid is coordinated by local units of the Forty & Eight when local relief agencies are unable to move rapidly and cannot act. The program also supports childhood diabetes and cystic fibrosis research.
Our Nurses Training program, uniques to our organization, was established in 1955 as a means of ensuring adequate numbers of skilled nurses, for our nation in time of war and peace. Augmented by George R Boland Nurses Scholarship Trust, the Forty & Eight Nurses Training Program has graduated over 33, 000 Registered Nurses with total program grants exceeding $30,0000 Registered Nurses with total program grants exceeding $30,000,000.
The Forty & Eight has a long association with the Gillis W. Long National Disease Center of Carville, Louisiana; a leading leprosy and tuberculosis research center. The Forty & Eight entirely funds the publications of the Carville Star Magazine for medical research.
In partnership with the Veterans Administration Voluntary Service V.A.V.S. program, our members volunteer at over 200 Veteran Medical Facilities. The Forty & Eight's Keep Those Wheelchairs Rolling program meets patient needs for medical equipment.
Forty & Eight's Youth Sports program provides financial assistance for youths 7 to 20, encompassing all amateur sports programs, including AAU/USA Junior Olympics and Special Olympics.
Our Americanism program is committed to furthering the American way of life by sponsoring Flags for First Graders, Boys State, Girls State, civic programs for youths and seniors, and memorial dedication ceremonies. The Forty & Eight offers annual awards for Law Officer of the Year and Hero of the Year.
The Forty & Eight POW/MIA program supports national efforts to return remains and provides a Scholarship Fund to aid families of POW/MIA'S.
Forty & Eight affiliates include the National Box Car Association, which raises funds for all Forty & Eight programs, the Societe de La Femme women's auxiliary, and the Press Association of La Societe (P.A.L.S.).
The Forty & Eight has 35,000 member Voyageurs worldwide. Virtue Locales meet at Legion Posts or at their own Chateau (club house). Many Voitures have Parade Trains and Hobo Clowns that bring smiles as they delight children and promote patriotism.
Membership is invitation only to honorably discharged Veterans with a DD214 and Active Duty Personnel.
The Forty & Eight Veteran fraternity proudly salutes America's many fine Veteran Sororities.
"To assist and promote the welfare and well-being of those who served in the Armed Forces of the United States, during all wars and conflicts recognized by the Congress of the United States, and their widows and orphans; to participate in all Memorial Services for and to be part in and to encourage others to participate in the proper observance of all days honoring Veterans; to preserve the memories of our Services in the Armed Forces of our Country; to actively participate within 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."
(Preamble to the 40/8 Constitution.)
Meetings are held on the on the Third Tuesday of each month at the Post.
The Forty & Eight holds dinners on the 1st Saturday of each month from October to May.