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Jacksonville Museum of Military History

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Arkansas has an incredible military history, much of which is unknown by many. The Jacksonville Museum of Military History exists to educate the public through various military history exhibits and is an incredible treasure.

We’ve driven through Jacksonville hundreds of times over the years. We’ve been to the splash zone, the annual train show at the community center, checked out the C-130s, and we used to eat at an incredible, but now closed, Thai restaurant that was introduced to us by a friend from Thailand.  Yet somehow, we had never visited the military museum. We didn’t even know it was there until a few weeks ago when we drove by and noticed the F-105 Thunderchief displayed outside.

Jacksonville Museum of Military History

Boy, were we missing out! The museum consists of a 4,500-square-foot main building with a 10,000-square-foot addition that is partially developed and will be completed soon. Our family, including our five-year-old son, enjoyed viewing all of the museum exhibits.

Jacksonville Museum of Military History

Whether you are a military history buff, interested in Arkansas history, or simply someone who is looking to expand their knowledge, the Jacksonville Museum of Military History provides a wealth of information. The exhibits are well researched and have mounted placards and a digital component for your smart device.

Artifacts are included from the Civil War through the Vietnam War. Emphasis is placed on war history related to Arkansas, although there are many nationally and globally-significant pieces in the collection. The museum also celebrates the histories of the Little Rock Air Force Base and the Arkansas Air National Guard.

Jacksonville Museum of Military History

Special features of the Jacksonville Museum of Military History:

  • F-105 Thunderchief – A supersonic single-seat flight bomber
  • Rare WWI American Red Cross motor service nurse uniform
  • AOP WOW Headscarf – worn by women ordnance workers at the plant. 75% of the plant’s 13,000 workers were women.
  • Titan II Launch Control Complex Facilities – Features and original Titan II control panel that could have launched a nuclear missile
  • MG 42 Machine Gun – one of the most feared weapons of WWII

The historical items associated with the Arkansas Ordnance Plant and the Titan II missiles are fascinating because of their association with Arkansas. There is so much military history related to the state that many people are unaware of, and the museum and staff will enlighten you! Some of the things I learned in talking with the staff and museum volunteers shocked me.

Also found at the museum:

  • Civil War field glasses
  • Arkansas Ordnance Plant Guard House – a historic military structure located outside the museum. It is one of only a handful of original artifacts from the Ordnance plant.
  • A collection of Dinky Toys.
  • Remnants of Reed’s Bridge from the battlefield site located not far from the museum.
  • Military family mural – painted by Arkansas muralist Jason White.

Jacksonville Museum of Military History

Honoring Soldiers

The museum honors soldiers who gave their all in several memorial exhibits throughout the museum. Most significant is the Vietnam memorial located just inside the entrance. Each dog tag hanging from the ceiling features the name, hometown and branch of every Arkansan killed in action during the Vietnam Conflict. It’s touching and sobering.

The museum is an incredible collection of military history from Arkansas and beyond. The museum is undergoing renovation, and new exhibits are being added. Visit the museum from 10-5 daily except Sundays and major holidays.

Jacksonville Museum Of Military History
100 Veterans Circle, Jacksonville, AR, 72076
501-241-1943
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Julie Kohl works from home as a writer and virtual assistant while raising her young son. A former Yankee who was "converted" to the south by her husband, Julie has grasped on to rural life in a sleepy, blink-your-eyes-and-you'll-miss-it town in central Arkansas. Julie loves adventure. Not necessarily "scare-your-pants-off" adventure but the kind where you seek out new and exciting things. New foods, new places, new experiences. On her blog, Seek Adventures, Julie shares about the outdoor and travel adventures of her family as they camp and standup paddleboard across the South. You can also learn more about her writing on her site Seek Adventures Media.

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