Virginia War Museum Newport News, VA
Although small and somewhat limited in scope, the Virginia War Museum has some very special artifacts and it’s the perfect weekend destination for you if artillery and tanks are your thing. There are numerous display cases and exhibits on such topics as war posters, military uniforms, women in the military, African Americans in the military, and small arms. Around you you’ll see a Gatling gun, an M5 Stuart light tank in World War II battlefield dress, a German 88 gun from World War II, an Iraqi antiaircraft gun captured during the Gulf War, a battle tank from World War I, plus several examples of towed artillery pieces.
What makes this destination special, though, are four artifacts each with a backstory that speaks volumes about the last 100 years. First, there is a blood chit carried by our airmen in the Pacific that would be their means of bartering for their lives if it ever came to that. Anyone who helped them cold redeem the chit for a cash reward from America.
Next, there is a sobering display with a piece of the wall from Dachau, the German concentration camp, and a display with a piece of the wall from a German Stalag where American POWs were kept.
Finally, and on a happier note, the museum has a piece of the Berlin Wall which is a fitting statement about all the reasons we do so much to keep our own freedoms. Be sure to visit here if you’re in the neighborhood.
Hours: Monday – Saturday 9AM – 5PM
Sunday: 12PM – 5PMVisit museum website