Branch No. 12 - The Hut
2090 Brant St, Windsor, ON N8Y 1C6
The mission of the Royal Canadian Legion, Walkerville and East Windsor Branch 12, is to serve and advocate for all Veterans and their dependents; to promote remembrance; and to act in the service of Canada and its communities. Through our mandate, we promote, support, and participate in all forms of municipal, community, and national service, in order to accomplish our mission.
Initially the club was under the auspices of the Great War Veterans Association (GWVA) and the first meetings were held in 1919 in the basement of store in the Holland Block at the corner of Linclon Road and Assumption Street. The name of the store was probably Premiere Confectionary.
In 1920, due to a rapidly growing membership, the GWVA sought to establish a permenant location. They were able to lease a piece of Crown property on Brant Street, behind the Walkerville Post Office. Also, they acquired a surplus army barricks and erected it on the foundation they built on the new property. Given it's previous life as an army hut, the building quickly acquired the nickname "The Hut".
In 1925, there was a proliferation of different Veteran Clubs. When General Douglas Haig encouraged Canadian Veterans to join the British Empire Service league, the GWVA was one of the first to join up. In the fall of 1925 the Windsor GWVA officially became the Walkerville and Ford Branch 12.
As the membership grew over the years between 1920 and 1977 the Hut evolved to the structure that it now is. 1938 saw an additon to the rear of the hut for executive offices and games room. A major overhaul in 1947 saw relocation of the hut to the north end of the property and construction of a new auditorium complete with balcony and stage. A major renovation of the auditorium occured in 1963/64 with interior upgrades and a stone/siding exterior. In 1965 the original army hut was replaced with a block building. It's rumoured that the orignal hut is still used as a cottage somewhere near Lake Erie. The final piece of the Hut's evolution was in 1977 after a truck smashed through the kitchen wall. At that time, the kitchen was totally renovated and a storage room was added onto the north end of the building.
On October 22, 2015 the Hut will host an Open House to celebrate its 90th year as a legion Branch.