Seven rising Clarke County High School seniors are participating in one of the summer’s most respected and selective educational programs of government instruction for U.S. high-school students. American Legion Boys State allows students to play a role in the operation of local, county and state government.
American Legion Post 41 of Berryville is sending seven delegates to Virginia American Legion Boys State being held on June 20-26, at Liberty University, Lynchburg, Virginia.
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.
The seven delegates are Ellis Chapman, Jr., Adam King, Ryan Cascio, Steven Trayer, and William Bigelow of Berryville; Warren Campbell of Boyce; and Carter Lawson of White Post.
The young men were selected by American Legion Post 41based on leadership, character, scholarship, and service to their school and community. All expenses are paid by Post 41.
Participants at Boys State learn the rights, privileges and responsibilities of franchised citizens. 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.
The American Legion was chartered and incorporated by Congress in 1919 as a patriotic veterans organization devoted to mutual helpfulness. It is the nation’s largest veterans service organization, committed to mentoring and sponsorship of youth programs in our communities, advocating patriotism and honor, promoting a strong national security, and continued devotion to fellow service members and veterans.