The following article was taken from the January 9, 1991 edition of The Free Press.
Mustered into service on April 23, 1946, the New Freedom Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7012 has been a contributing organization to the community for over 65 years. Thirty eight World War I and II veterans were present at the initial meeting held in the old community building on South Front Street.
It was almost two years later – March 5, 1948 – that the newly formed veterans’ organization purchased its present home at 123 W. Main St. for $1,800.
The landmark actually served several purposes before it became the home of the veterans. The three story structure was built in 1889 by the Junior Order of United American Mechanics as a meeting site. The building also served as a gathering place for Daughters of America, Golden Rod Council 24, as early as 1905 and for many years it was the headquarters for the New Freedom Equitable Building and Loan Association.
In 1918, the second floor was converted into a theater where silent films until the mid-1920s.
The veterans made extensive renovations to the structure after they purchased it, Charter members and other personnel dug out the dirt and stone walls of the building on the street level to make it into a club room. A boiler room was the only thing that was there at the time. They put in a new kitchen and made a storage area in the rear. When that was finished, they tore off the third floor of the building and erected a brick wall in the front to enhance the aesthetics of the exterior. The exterior of the building was covered with new siding and larger windows replaced the older ones.
In later years, an addition was made to the building to house a game room and kitchen facilities on the second floor. The second floor dining room seats 130 which is rented out to non-members and at reduced cost to members.
Thomas R.C. McNew was the first Post Commander. Zachary Bamberger serves as the current Commander.