National World War 2 Museum, New Orleans 2016

The National WWII Museum, previously the National D-Day Museum, opened in 2000 on the 56th anniversary of D-Day. New Orleans was chosen for the location of the museum owing to the fact that the Higgins Landing Crafts were designed, engineered and built just feet away from the location of the museum.

Congress designated it the National WWII Museum in 2003. The museum has grown astoundingly since its inception, mainly from private donations of personal collections. Some key pieces were searched out and acquired to help round out the displays and collections.

The Arrival

I drove through the very confusing area of downtown New Orleans, and found parking across the street from the museum. As many of you know, I am REALLY into WW2 so this was a treat while I was in the area for a wedding.

The Museum

It is a museum, some open display areas, some interactive displays, some themed timeline displays that draw you through them.
Avenger divebomber, rocked the Pacific for 4 years Made D-Day possible.  The beach storming Higgins Boat Terror to the allies in the air and on the ground, the mighty 88mm
C-47, the aerial workhorse of cargo and men.  Rugged, simple, and we had thousands Armed heavily, carried a lot of bombs, and well, sadly the B-17's best defense was that we had more than they could reasonably shoot down


I spent most of my time in the themed area of Europe, and all these items are original, real, and if one had access, functional.
11 million in Europe to fight.  This was our enemy there The German Soldier's kit, he could operate 3 days removed from support with this and many times had to Hard to see the weapons with that flag behind them, just like it was hard to see the regular German people with that flag behind them
Pistols galore I own several of these displayed myself
Training barracks, and probably the most comfortable place our boys would sleep in for a long time Food, blankets, necessities And more equipment the Americans carried to be able to fight, win, survive, on their own
Cigarettes, very American, given out by the shipload.  The easily reachable crutch to try to deal with the realities of war This is probably the real reason we won the war, the ability to ship our supplies quickly and in excess to the fronts
The Germans didn't have nearly as many as we did, or the fuel to run them The Germans had very effective camo, and so much of it, the USA stopped using camouflage in Europe due to trigger happy Yanks thinking anyone in it must be "Fritz" The museum has a few areas detailing individual soldiers from different countries.  You may dislike them, but everyone in the war at the lower level was fighting for their country, not really because they believed in their nation
The Japanese view of the US.  All sides views are reflected in the museum, very enlightening We could play the propoganda game pretty well ourselves
Rare Navy items, not many survived the war in a warship or submarine for Germany The most complicated encryption device made up to time, and it took the first electronic computer ever created to be able to break the code


If you have any interest at all in the War, or in our armed forces, or the 1940s, this is a gluttonous wallowing in war history. Delightful and intensely filled with period equipment, a feast for the eyes, a celebration of our victory and a time when our country was the best it ever has been.

They are expanding constantly, adding two new buildings since I was there in 2016. It's an honor and monument to everyone who fought and those who died in the most destructive conflict in history. You should go, for the insight, the education, the orgy of original items. I almost wish I could rent a room there, but it seems a period-themed hotel has opened right next door now in the Higgins Hilton. Yes, I shall be going there and blogging about it in the near future.

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