Veterans of World War I of the USA Inc.
The Veterans of World War I of the U.S.A., Inc. was organized by War I Buddies in 1948, uniting in fraternal, civic and social comradeship those who served honorably in the Armed Forces of the United States during the period of World War I beginning 6 April 1917 and ending 11 November 1918, "Armistice Day." And for those who served in Siberia 11 November 1918 to 1 July 1921. 4,734,991 men and women participated in the First World War. The VWWI was incorporated by the 85th Congress on 18 July 1958.
In 1989 when the Veterans of World War I were the host of the Veterans Day remembrance ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery there were 100,000 WW I veterans remaining, whose average age was 94. At this time (2010) there is only one member remaining in the organization, Frank Woodruff Buckles who is the National Commander.
Like many veteran's organizations the VWWI had a constitution and by-laws adopted on 1 April 1976 and an official ritual which was adopted on 1 February also in 1976. The constitution and by-laws as well as the ritual followed a format very similar to that of the Grand Army of the Republic of the veterans of the Civil War and of the American Legion. Like the Grand Army of the Republic, Veterans of World War I will dissolve upon the death of their last member. Their executive office, formerly located in Alexandria, Virginia is already closed and the United States Department of Veteran's Affairs acts as the administrator of the organization.
The VWWI was organized on a national basis with subdivisions of Departments, Districts and Barracks which was the name given to the local chapter, camps, or entities of the organization. The members were officially called "Buddies". There was also a ladies auxilliary. There were ten regions covering the United States. A national convention was held each year and in 1974 and 1975 it met in Kansas City, Missouri, where the National World War One Musuem and Liberty Memorial are located.