Why We Have Boys State







The year of 2017 will see our post send 4 candidates to Boys State. Each year our post sends more and more candidates to Boys State to learn and experience government and leadership. This year marks the 77th Anniversary of the American Legion Boys State. Post 411 fully sponsors the boys and encourages them through their high schools to apply and participate.

About Boy's State

American Legion Boys State is among the most respected and selective educational programs of government instruction for U.S. high school students. A participatory program in which students become part of the operation of local, county and state government, Boys State was founded in 1935 to counter the socialism-inspired Young Pioneer Camps. The program was the idea of two Illinois Legionnaires, Hayes Kennedy and Harold Card, who organized the first Boys State at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield.

American Legion Auxiliary sponsors a separate but similar program for young women called Girls State.

At Boys State, participants learn the rights, privileges and responsibilities of franchised citizens. The training is objective and centers on the structure of city, county and state governments. Operated by students elected to various offices, Boys State activities include legislative sessions, court proceedings, law-enforcement presentations, assemblies, bands, choruses and recreational programs.

Legion posts select high school juniors to attend the program. In most cases, individual expenses are paid by a sponsoring post, a local business or another community-based organization.

Boys State programs currently exist in all Legion departments in the United States except Hawaii. As separate corporations, Boys State programs vary in content and method of procedure, but each adheres to the same basic concept: teaching government from the township to the state level.

Guidance Councilors, Teachers and interested participants should contact Post 411 Boys State Chairman, Larry Eary at 936-207-2401 extension 2, for more information on the program.