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The Sink-Crumb Post 72 American Legion Hut, located on the northeastern corner of 2nd and Cherry streets in the small Clay County community of Knobel, is a tin-roofed cypress log building designed in the Rustic aesthetic common among American Legion buildings erected during the early 1930s. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on September 25, 2008.
As with other towns around Arkansas, Knobel was home to many World War I veterans, and when the state’s American Legion leadership began encouraging the creation of additional posts in the late 1920s, members decided to band together and create Sink-Crumb Post 72. The post—likely named for local men who died while in military service—was founded in the spring of 1931, according to the Arkansas Legionnaire, which reported on April 4 that the post had formed with seventeen charter members under the leadership of Post Commander Alfred Prince. A women’s auxiliary for the post formed in 1932 after Minnie Johnson, Fourth District President of the American Legion Auxiliary, met with members and families of Sink-Crumb Post 72 and organized a unit in Knobel.
The members of the Sink-Crumb post most likely took advantage of funding available through the Civil Works Administration (CWA), one of the earliest of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal programs, to construct their legion hut, as did many other Arkansas posts.
Little is known about the construction of the building other than the fact that local men cut and notched the logs from which the building was constructed. The hut was completed in early 1934, and the first meeting was held there on March 30. The Clay County Courier reported that “Sink-Crumb American Legion Post, No. 72, last Friday evening opened the doors of its new log hut, with a barbecue and special program attended by about 300 persons....The lot on which the Legion hut is located was donated by Joseph Sellmeyer. A service flag—made by the ladies of Knobel in 1918, with 24 stars, representing boys from Knobel who served during the World war—was dedicated and placed in the new hut.” Significantly, among the speakers at the event was O. C. Lynch, who served as Clay County’s CWA coordinator.
Sink-Crumb Post 72 members continue to gather at their Legion Hut in the twenty-first century, which stands as a testament to the efforts and accomplishments of Knobel’s American Legionnaires.
For additional information:“Knobel Post Holds Armistice Program.” Arkansas Legionnaire, November 21, 1931, p. 1.
“Knobel Post to Hold Banquet April 17.” Arkansas Legionnaire, April 4, 1931, p. 1.
“New American Legion Hut Opened at Knobel.” Clay County Courier, April 6, 1934, p. 1.
“Sink-Crumb Post Meets in New Building.” Arkansas Legionnaire, April 14, 1934, p. 1.
“Sink-Crumb Post No. 72 American Legion Hut.” National Register of Historic Places nomination form. On file at Arkansas Historic Preservation Program, Little Rock, Arkansas. Online at http://www.arkansaspreservation.com/National-Register-Listings/PDF/CY0071.nr.pdf (accessed January 12, 2016).
Mark K. Christ Arkansas Historic Preservation Program
Last Updated 1/20/2016
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