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Military and War Museums – Virtual Tour

Imperial War Museum - Joy of Museum

Military and War Museums Tour – Virtual Tour

A Military and War Museum is an institution that cares for collections related to military history and in remembrance of sacrifices made during wars and conflicts.

The types of museums vary from large institutions to smaller institutions focusing on specific subjects.

Virtual Tour of Military and War Museums and Memorials

Highlights Tour of Military and War Museums and Memorials Tour

National WWII Museum, USA

The National WWII Museum is a military history museum that focuses on the contribution made by the United States to Allied victory in World War II.

The museum was founded in 2000, and the U.S. Congress designated it as America’s official National WWII Museum in 2003.

The museum opened as the D-Day Museum, on the 56th anniversary of D-Day, focusing on the invasion of Normandy. The Higgins boats that were vital to amphibious operations were designed, built, and tested in New Orleans, the location of the museum.

The museum is a Smithsonian Institution affiliated museum. It also sponsors a wargaming club and holds a wargame convention each year called “Heat of Battle.”

The mission statement of the museum emphasizes the American experience in World War II.

National World War I Museum and Memorial, USA

The National World War I Museum and Memorial of the United States opened as the Liberty Memorial museum in 1926. The United States Congress designated it as America’s official museum dedicated to World War I in 2004.

The museum tells the story of the Great War and related global events from their origins before 1914 through the 1918 armistice and 1919 Paris Peace Conference.

Visitors enter the exhibit space across a glass bridge above a field of 9,000 red poppies, each one representing 1,000 combatant deaths.

The mission of the museum and Memorial is to be: “dedicated to remembering, interpreting, and understanding the Great War and its enduring impact on the global community.”

National Civil War Museum, USA

The National Civil War Museum is a history museum that preserves the material culture relevant to the American Civil War of 1861–1865, and the aftermath of the war.

It also provides sources of information related to Civil War Veterans’ service organizations, including the Grand Army of the Republic, United Confederate Veterans and the Daughters of the Confederacy to 1920.

The museum also serves as the National Headquarters for the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, the successor to the Grand Army of the Republic. 

The museum’s exhibits are designed to tell: “the entire story of the American Civil War … without bias to the Union or Confederate causes.”

National Museum of the Pacific War, USA

The National Museum of the Pacific War is located at the boyhood home of Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz. Nimitz was Commander in Chief, Pacific Ocean Areas during World War II.

The six-acre site includes the Admiral Nimitz Museum, which tells the story of Nimitz beginning with his life as a young boy through his naval career.

The Admiral Nimitz Foundation was established in 1964 to develop a museum in Nimitz’s birthplace, Fredericksburg, Texas.

The hotel that was owned by Nimitz’s grandfather was restored to its original design and renamed the Admiral Nimitz Museum by an act of the Texas legislature in 1968.

In 1976, the 130th anniversary of the founding of Fredericksburg, the Japanese government gifted the museum a Japanese Garden of Peace.

Imperial War Museum, London

Imperial War Museums (IWM) has branches at five locations in England, three of which are in London.

Founded as the Imperial War Museum in 1917, and its focus is on recording civil and military war efforts and the sacrifice of all conflicts in which British or Commonwealth forces have been involved since 1914.

Intrepid, Sea, Air & Space Museum, New York

The Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum is a military and maritime history museum at Pier 86 on the West Side of Manhattan. 

The Museum opened in 1982 after the USS Intrepid was saved from scrapping. Later, the Intrepid became a National Historic Landmark in 1986.

In 1988, the Museum was awarded USS Growler, a Grayback-class submarine, which carried nuclear missiles by the United States Congress from the United States Navy and is now on display and available for tours.

 In 2011, ownership of the Space Shuttle Enterprise was transferred to the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum.

National Museum of the United States Air Force

The National Museum of the United States Air Force is the oldest and largest military aviation museum in the world, with over 360 aircraft and missiles on display.

The museum dates to 1923, but only in 1954 did it became public. Under the name of the Air Force Museum, it was housed in its first permanent facility, an engine overhaul hangar, at the former Patterson Field in Fairborn.

The current facility opened in 1971, with the additional hangars being added to extend the size and scope of the museum. The museum was appointed in 2004 as the National Museum of the United States Air Force.

National Museum of the Marine Corps

The National Museum of the Marine Corps is a historical museum that opened in 2006. The museum replaces both the Marine Corps Historical Center and the Marine Corps Air-Ground Museum.

The museum’s exterior is meant to: “evoke the image of the flag raisers of Iwo Jima.”

The National Museum of the Marine Corps is designed to be the centerpiece of a complex of facilities called the Marine Corps Heritage Center.

This campus includes Semper Fidelis Memorial Park, Semper Fidelis Chapel, a demonstration area with parade grounds, and much more.

National Veterans Memorial and Museum

The National Veterans Memorial and Museum is the United States’ national museum for veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces. The museum is focused on the personal stories of U.S. veterans.

The museum focuses on the stories of veterans and individuals with the mission to: “honor, inspire, connect, and educate.”

The museum houses personal artifacts such as footlockers, military ribbons, and the letters that service men and women sent home.

Exhibits include stories from veterans dating from the American Revolutionary War up to recent conflicts. It intends to educate civilians about the diverse backgrounds veterans have and their roles in the military.

Australian War Memorial

The Australian War Memorial is Australia’s national Memorial and museums to the members of its armed forces and supporting organizations who served and sacrificed in wars involving the Commonwealth of Australia. 

The Australian War Memorial consists of the Commemorative Area or Shrine, the Hall of Memory,  the Tomb of the Unknown Australian Soldier, the Memorial’s galleries, and the Museum.

Darwin Military Museum, Australia

The Darwin Military Museum has many exhibits from World War II, including Navy, Army, and Air Force items from Australian, U.S. and other armed forces.

It is set amongst concrete gun emplacements and other fortifications in an area that was one of the most heavily fortified parts of Australia during the war.

Shrine of Remembrance, Melbourne, Australia

The Shrine of Remembrance is one of the most significant war memorials in Australia.

It was built as a memorial to the men and women of Victoria who served in World War I, and it is today a memorial to all Australians who have served in the war.

It is a site of annual observances of ANZAC Day (25 April) and Remembrance Day (11 November).

Changi Museum, Singapore

The Changi Museum is a museum focused on Singapore’s history during the Second World War and the Japanese occupation of Singapore.

The Museum has a collection of paintings, photographs, and personal effects donated by former POWs. A vital feature of the Museum is a replica of the Changi Chapel and the Changi Murals.

Old Ford Motor Factory, Singapore

The Old Ford Motor Factory is where the British forces under Lieutenant-General Arthur Percival surrendered to Japanese troops in 1942 after the Battle of Singapore.

The Museum focuses on World War II, the Fall of Singapore and the Japanese Occupation.

War Museum of Thessaloniki, Greece

The War Museum of Thessaloniki is a military museum that highlights the events which contributed to modern Greek history from the turn of the 1900s to the liberation of Greece from German forces at the end of World War II.

The collection includes photographs, military uniforms, weapons, replicas, works of art, maps, paintings, and similar items from the armies of different Balkan countries.

Churchill War Rooms, London

The Churchill War Rooms in London is one of the five branches of the Imperial War Museum.

The Museum features the Cabinet War Rooms, a historic underground complex that housed a British government command center throughout the Second World War, and the Churchill Museum.

The Churchill Museum a biographical museum exploring the life of British statesman Winston Churchill.

Auckland War Memorial Museum Tāmaki Paenga Hira, New Zealand

The Auckland War Memorial Museum Tāmaki Paenga Hira is one of New Zealand’s major museums and war memorials. Its collections concentrate on New Zealand history, natural history, as well as military history.

The Cenotaph includes parts of the Museum, as well as its surrounding consecrated grounds. The Court of Honour, also serves as a war memorial, mainly to those who lost their lives in the First and Second World Wars.

Household Cavalry Museum, London

The Household Cavalry Museum is the Museum of the Household Cavalry. Visitors can view the Household Cavalry horses in their 18th-century working stables.

The Museum focuses on the training and history of the regiment.

National Army Museum, London

The National Army Museum is the British Army’s central museum. It is located adjacent to the Royal Hospital Chelsea, the home of the “Chelsea Pensioners.”

The Museum houses five galleries that cover British military history from the English Civil War up to modern-day.

The Museum focuses on the overall history of British land forces, unlike other military museums in the United Kingdom, which concentrate on the history of individual corps and regiments of the British Army.

MacArthur Museum Brisbane

In February 1942, as Japanese forces tightened their grip on the Philippines, General Douglas MacArthur was ordered by President Roosevelt to move to Australia.

His famous speech, where he said, “I came through, and I shall return,” was first made in Australia. Later Washington asked MacArthur to amend his promise to “We shall return.” He ignored the request.

Spy Museums Tour

War Quotes

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“To be prepared for war is one of the most effective means of preserving peace.”
– George Washington

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“You must not fight too often with one enemy, or you will teach him all your art of war.”
– Napoleon Bonaparte

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“The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.”
– Leo Tolstoy

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“God grant me a good sword and no use for it.”
– Polish Proverb

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“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” –
Sun Tzu

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“The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.” –
George S. Patton

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“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
– Winston Churchill

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“It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.”
– Aristotle

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“In peace, sons bury their fathers. In war, fathers bury their sons.”
– Herodotus

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“Victorious warriors win first and then go to war,
while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.”
– Sun Tzu

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“I do not know with what weapons World War III will be fought,
but I do know that World War IV will be fought with rocks.”
– Albert Einstein

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“After the war, aid.”
– Greek Proverb

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“We make war that we may live in peace.”
– Aristotle

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“You must not fight too often with one enemy, or you will teach him all your art of war.”
– Napoleon Bonaparte

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Photo Credit: JOM

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