Buddy Poppy & National Home April 2025

Tanya Constant (360) 990-1508 Email monthly report form

We are winding up our year but we are never done, how about show some love to the National Home. If you are not currently a member let’s make a change. If you are already a member think about sponsoring another member.  During our last council of administration we passed around a hat to donate to the Mississippi house. The auxiliary raised $273, I put the challenge out to the VFW and not only did they accept the challenge they met the challenge and exceeded the challenge with a total of $641. When you are holding your district meetings this month why not put the challenge out to your members to donate to the Mississippi house. When you donate it not only helps keeping the house updated any construction needs or remodeling. Let’s make Mississippi proud.


Join the VFW National Home family! Become a Life Member or an Associate Life Member and create a lasting bond between yourself and the mission of the National Home.


VFW and VFW Auxiliary members and organizations are eligible to become Life Members. Life Members may vote for the trustees who represent their National Home District and approve any proposed changes to our bylaws and articles of incorporation. The National Home Board of Trustees approved the use of electronic voting beginning with the 2022 Trustee District election, therefore, Life Members must have a valid email and/or a mobile phone number on record in order to vote.

Buddy Poppy/National Home Mar 24

Tanya Constant (360) 990-1508 Email monthly report form

Happy March spring is just around the corner. Our year is coming to a close quickly but we have plenty of time to make a difference. I wanted to share what a few of us did on the mid winter Cruise. If you haven’t heard about cruising ducks it is a fun activity that many children and adults enjoy. Mississippi hid over a hundred buddy Poppy ducks all over the ship. National president Carla Martinez enjoyed handing them out personally.  You can see some pictures on our website you can see some of the pictures that patrons uploaded. 

Thank you to everyone that has sent a canceled check to me for the 100th birthday I have forwarded them on to the national home.

Some of you may have had the opportunity to visit the national home but for those that have not I want to share with you what our sponsored house looks like. So when you are making your donations for the remainder of the year remember that if you send in a donation to the national home don’t forget about the house. (Please send house donations to

VFW Department P.O. Box 2027, Jackson, MS 39225

It is definitely wonderful to see our new state flag flying in front of our house..

Sponsored by the VFW Department of Mississippi

Built in 1929
2,874 Square Feet
4 Bed, 3 Bath

Buddy Poppy Dec23

Tanya Constant (360) 990-1508 Email monthly report form

Buddy Poppy proceeds represent no profit to any VFW unit. All money contributed by the public for Buddy Poppies is used for members of the Armed Forces, veterans’ welfare, or for the well-being of needy dependents, widows and orphans of veterans.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States was the first veterans organization to promote a nationally organized campaign for the annual distribution of poppies assembled by disabled and needy veterans.

The poppy movement was inspired by the poem “In Flanders Fields,” written by Col. John McCrae of the Canadian forces before the United States entered World War I. Distributing replicas of the original Flanders Poppy originated in some Allied countries immediately after the Armistice. No definite organized distribution of poppies on a nationwide scale was conducted in America until 1921, when the Franco-American Children’s League distributed poppies ostensibly for the benefit of children in the devastated areas of France and Belgium. Madame Guerin, who was recognized as “the poppy lady from France,” sought and received the cooperation of the VFW of the U.S. in early 1922, after the Franco-American Children’s League was dissolved. The VFW conducted a poppy campaign prior to Memorial Day 1922, using only poppies made in France. In the 1923 poppy campaign, due to difficulty and delay in getting poppies from France, the VFW used French poppies that were on hand, and the balance was provided by a firm in New York City manufacturing artificial flowers. During the 1923 campaign, the VFW evolved the idea which resulted in the VFW “Buddy”® Poppy fashioned by disabled and needy veterans who were paid for their work. This plan was formally presented for adoption to the 1923 Encampment at Norfolk, Virginia.

Immediately thereafter, the VFW Buddy Poppy factory was established in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where all the VFW Buddy Poppies for the 1924 campaign were assembled by disabled veterans. Gen. Frank T. Hines, Director of the U.S. Veterans’ Bureau, endorsed the plan and pledged the cooperation of his department. All men employed in assembling Buddy Poppies for the 1924 campaign were sent to the VFW Poppy workshop by the Veterans’ Bureau regional manager in Pittsburgh. The designation Buddy Poppy, which originated with the men themselves, was adopted at that time. The VFW has made that trademark a guarantee that all poppies bearing that name and the VFW label are genuine products of the work of disabled and needy veterans. No other organization, firm or individual can make legal use of the name Buddy Poppy.

Following the 1924 campaign, a number of larger VFW Departments (states) believed it would stimulate local distribution if the poppies they used were assembled by disabled veterans in hospitals within their own jurisdiction. The 1924 VFW Encampment at Atlantic City granted this privilege, under the provision that all poppies would be produced according to specifications set forth by the National Buddy Poppy Department, and that all poppies would be assembled by disabled veterans in government hospitals and by needy veterans in workshops supervised by the VFW. 

The VFW has steadfastly adhered to the policy of veteran assembled poppies. The VFW organized the first nationwide distribution of poppies by a veterans organization in May 1922. The poppy was adopted by the National Encampment in Seattle, during August of that year as the official memorial flower of the VFW.

In September 1920, the national convention of the American Legion held in Cleveland passed a resolution adopting the poppy as the official flower of that organization. However, at the third national convention of the American Legion held in Kansas City in October 1921, the American Legion repudiated the poppy and adopted the daisy as its official flower. 

In October 1922, following the first nationwide distribution of poppies by the VFW during May of that year, the fourth national convention of the American Legion held in New Orleans in October adopted the following resolution: “Resolved, that the poppy is hereby declared to be the official American Legion flower, instead of the daisy, which was adopted by the 1921 convention of the American Legion.” 

Following the successful poppy campaign conducted by the VFW in May 1922, the American Legion realized the financial possibilities of the poppy movement. In the spring of 1923, following the New Orleans encampment and one year after the first VFW Poppy campaign on a nationwide scale, the American Legion conducted its first poppy distribution using poppies supplied by a French manufacturer. 

From the very beginning, the Buddy Poppy project of the VFW has received the endorsement and cooperation of the director of the Veterans Administration, and the support of administrators and medical officers of government hospitals. All presidents since Warren G. Harding (1921-23) have conveyed to the nation at large endorsement and recognition of this VFW effort. 

Today, the VFW Buddy Poppies are assembled by disabled, needy and aging veterans in VA rehabilitation centers. The majority of proceeds derived from each campaign conducted by the VFW Posts and their Auxiliaries is retained locally to provide for veteran services and welfare. The minimal assessment (cost of Buddy Poppies) to the VFW units provides compensation to the veterans who assembled the poppies, provides financial assistance in maintaining state and national veterans’ rehabilitation and service programs, and partially supports the VFW National Home for Children, a community of children and families of veterans and active-duty military.

Buddy Poppy – November 2023

Tanya Constant email


When did the fire department start? Sweetpea  
In 1975 the home received a firetruck by raising soup labels. What did the firefighters name that fire truck?  11 in the beginning, eventually changed to 14  
The national home fire department supported 2 cities’ fire departments as reserves. Name one.   5  
How old did a child have to be to start training?  The Military order of the Cootie
How many fire trucks did the fire department own total?  In 1950/51 as part of Operation Fire Department.    
What organization built the Fire barn?   Onondaga, Eaton Rapids.  

Buddy Poppy – August

Tanya Constant


CATEGORY 2. Memorial or Inspirational Displays (Wreaths, memorial tablets or plaques,  patriotic or devotional themes) 

(a) Displays must be designed to honor the dead, to inspire devotion to God and  Country, or to dramatize the activities supported by the “Buddy”® Poppy. 

(b) At least one (1) of the Poppies used in the display must be in its original form and color, with an original Poppy with tag attached.

Health and Happiness donation to the VFW National Home

–   Check should be earmarked National Home Health & Happiness. DO NOT SEND ANY donations to the National Home through the Dept. Treasurer. Health and Happiness donations to the NHC are Based on June 30, 2023 membership.

.10 cents per member ___________

.25 cents per member____________

Send to: 

VFW AUXILIARY 406 West 34th Street, 10th Floor, Kansas City, MO 64111. 

Buddy Poppy – August 23

In Flander’s Field by John McCrae  

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow,
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky,
The larks, still bravely singing, fly,
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead.
Short days ago,
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved and now we lie,
In Flanders Fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe
To you, from failing hands, we throw,
The torch, be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us, who die,
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow,
In Flanders Fields.

From its inception, the Buddy Poppy Program has helped the VFW live up to its motto, “to honor the dead by helping the living.” The Buddy Poppy – small red flower symbolic of the blood shed in World War I by millions of Allied soldiers in defense of freedom – was originally sold to provide relief for the people of war devastated France. Later, its sale directly benefited thousands of disabled and down-and-out American veterans.

The poppy program actually got its start on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. Shortly after World War I, Madame E. Guerin, founder of the American and French Children’s League, became concerned that the free world was “forgetting too soon those sleeping in Flanders Fields.” Inspired by Colonel John McCrae’s poem, “In Flanders Field,” which spoke of poppies growing in an Allied graveyard “between the crosses, row on row,” Guerin decided on the poppy as the most appropriate memorial flower. She began attending the conventions of any serviceman’s organization that would allow her to speak. Her request was always the same – to enact the following resolution: “Be it resolved that every member, if possible, and his or her family shall wear a silk red poppy.”

The poppy program was quickly embraced by the people of France, and also secured the sponsorship of the Prince of Wales, the Governors General of Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, and the President of Cuba. In each of these countries, veteran’s organizations and their auxiliaries agreed to sell memorial poppies for the benefit of the children of France.

In April 1919, the “Poppy Lady,” as Madame Guerin was now known, arrived in the United States. She came to speak in support of the “Victory Loan” – financial assistance to help France’s homeless and jobless get back on their feet. While stateside, she asked the newly formed American Legion to sponsor the poppy program in the United States. At their second national convention in Cleveland in September 1920, the American Legion passed a resolution making the poppy their official flower. At the next year’s convention, however, the delegates repudiated the poppy and instead adopted the daisy as the organization’s official flower. Subsequently, Madame Guerin reported that her “deception was great on the 23rd of January [1922] to hear that the American Legion Auxiliary had taken the Idea to sponsor FOR THEMSELVES the Poppy Day of the U.S.”

When the Poppy Lady turned to the VFW for help, the organization readily agreed to take over from the American Legion. In May 1922, the VFW conducted the first nationwide distribution of poppies in the United States. Then, at its National Encampment in Seattle in August 1922, the organization adopted the poppy as the official memorial flower of the VFW.

Following the success of the VFW’s first poppy sale, the American Legion had second thoughts about its withdrawal from the program.

A disgruntled American Legion was not the only problem to plague the VFW’s poppy program in the early years. The American and French Children’s League (sometimes referred to as the Franco-American Children’s League) had been dissolved shortly before the VFW’s 1922 poppy sale. Much of the poppy supply went with it. Consequently, the VFW had great difficulty obtaining enough poppies for the 1923 sale.

From the frustrations of the 1923 sales year evolved a plan to pay disabled and needy American veterans to make the poppies. This plan was presented to the 1923 National Encampment for approval. Immediately following the plan’s adoption, a VFW poppy factory was set up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. All veterans who would be manufacturing poppies for the 1924 sale were sent to a training workshop by the U.S. Veterans Bureau regional manager in Pittsburgh.

It was from these early disabled poppy makers that the name which would be the flower’s trademark came. The name just “grew” out of the poppy makers’ remembrances of their buddies who never came back from war. Undoubtedly, because it expressed so simply the deepest significance of the Poppy Plan, the name stuck. All over the country, the little red flower became known as the “Buddy Poppy.”

In February 1924, the VFW registered the name “Buddy Poppy” with the U.S. Patent Office. On May 20, 1924, a certificate was issued granting the VFW, under the classification of artificial flowers, all trademark rights to the name of “Buddy.” No other organization, firm, or individual can use the name “Buddy Poppy.” The VFW has made this trademark a guarantee that all poppies bearing that name and the VFW label are the work of bona fide disabled and needy veterans. After the 1924 sale, some of the larger state departments of the VFW suggested that it might improve local sales if the poppies used were made by hospitalized veterans from their own area. The delegates at the 1924 National Encampment agreed. They ruled that poppies would now be made throughout the U.S. by disabled veterans in government hospitals and by needy veterans in workshops supervised by the VFW. Currently the little red flowers of silk-like fabric are assembled in eleven different locations. The VA Facilities in which they are made are located in:

Leavenworth and Topeka, Kansas; Biloxi, Mississippi; Temple, Texas; Martinsburg, West Virginia; Hampton, Virginia; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Dayton, Ohio; and White City and Grand Rapids, Michigan.

From the start of the VFW’s poppy program, the U.S. Veterans Bureau, the Administrator of Veterans Affairs, and other federal agencies have supported the Buddy Poppy. And beginning with Warren G. Harding, U.S. presidents have also been staunch supporters of the program. Each year, a Poppy Girl or Poppy Boy selected from the National Home’s residents starts the annual campaign by presenting the first poppy to the president of the United States.

Today, there are strict rules governing how profits from Buddy Poppy sales are to be used at different levels within the organization. The National organization assesses a tax of three and one-half cents on every poppy sold to a state department. This tax is added to the cost of manufacturing and distributing the poppy. Tax revenues are allotted as follows: one and one-half cents to the service fund of the department that purchased the poppy, one cent to the VFW National Home, and one cent to the Veterans Service fund of the National Headquarters.

At the department level, an additional tax is normally added to the cost of the poppies it sells to the posts in its jurisdiction. This profit is used to fund department service work or other programs for the relief or wellbeing of VFW members.

Posts receive their profits from direct sale of the poppies to the public. National by-laws require that the profits from these sales be placed in the post’s Relief Fund to be used only for the following purposes: 

  • For the aid, assistance, relief, and comfort of needy or disabled veterans or members of the Armed

Forces and their dependents, and the widows and orphans of deceased veterans. 

  • For the maintenance and expansion of the VFW National Home and other facilities devoted exclusively to the benefit and welfare of the dependents, widows, and orphans of disabled, needy, or deceased veterans or members of the Armed Forces. 
  • For necessary expenses in providing entertainment, care, and assistance to hospitalized veterans or members of the Armed Forces. 
  • For veterans’ rehabilitation, welfare, and service work. 
  • To perpetuate the memory of deceased veterans and members of the Armed Forces, and to comfort survivors. 

With help from the VFW, the “Little Red Flower” continues to benefit the needy just as the Poppy Lady believed it was capable of so many years ago. In 1989, for example, 17,894,684 poppies were sold for an average donation of 55 cents. To date, the VFW has sold over three quarters of a billion Buddy Poppies. As long as Americans continue to spill their blood in defense of freedom, sales of these blood-red poppies will undoubtedly continue strong.

Buddy® Poppy & VFW National Home – July 23

Tanya Constant 360-990-1508

August School of Instruction

  CATEGORY 1. Public Promotion of Poppy Campaign (Window, booth, parade, poster  displays, campaign promotions, etc.)

(a) Displays must be designed for public exposure and must bear a message soliciting a donation for and wearing of the VFW “Buddy”® Poppy.

(b) At least one (1) of the Poppies used in the display must be in its original form and color, with a label attached.

October School of Instruction

CATEGORY 2. Memorial or Inspirational Displays (Wreaths, memorial tablets or plaques,  patriotic or devotional themes)

(a) Displays must be designed to honor the dead, to inspire devotion to God and  Country, or to dramatize the activities supported by the “Buddy”® Poppy.

(b) At least one (1) of the Poppies used in the display must be in its original form and color, with a label attached.

March School of Instruction

CATEGORY 3. Artistic or Decorative Use of Poppies (Post Home displays, table centerpieces, corsages, pictures, plaques, models, scenes, hats, novelty pieces, etc.)

(a) Any display not meeting the qualifications for Categories 1 or 2 shall automatically be entered in Category 3.