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Museum puts war history on display

Posted: September 4, 2012 - 5:51pm

Tucked away on East Spring Grove Avenue inside American Legion Post 71 is a room full of memories waiting to teach the public about the wars fought by America.

The museum, which was finished this summer, provides history from around the area, such as the fact that Daniel Village in Augusta was a training field during World War I.

Rex Bell, the curator of the museum, said tours of the museum are available and he would be happy to get schools scheduled to come through and to teach children what their relatives did for their nation. He said the goal is to take children through the museum and then hold a question and answer session, maybe even have a World War II veteran speak to them.

At the museum’s entrance hangs a P-38 Lightning aircraft replica that was used in World War II. There is a wall of photos of Post 71 members during their days of service, binoculars, uniforms, a Chinese rifle and even a blank shell that was fired at President Harry S. Truman’s funeral.

For some veterans, the memories are too strong to walk through the museum and look at the artifacts, Bell said. However, they are grateful that it is being used as a teaching tool.

“They’ll come up to me and thank me for what I do, bringing alive what they’ve done in the past,” he said.

Items are continuously being accepted for the museum, and Bell said he hopes to eventually rotate exhibits.

“I am just looking forward to it (tours),” Bell said. “It is something the kids will get a kick out of.”

Bell added that he hopes it will give children a sense of pride for their nation.

To schedule a tour, call Bell at (706) 799-9769 or e-mail rexibell@comcast.net.

DID YOU KNOW?

In addition to a museum, American Legion Post 71 also has a banquet hall that can seat 226 people that rents for $500 for an eight-hour period. For information, call Rex Bell at (706) 799-9769.

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