On the way back from a trip to Arkansas — don’t ask! — I decided to stop by Camp Shelby MS to check out the museum. The last time I had gone there was in the early ’90’s. I expected it to be housed in the old post movie theater, where I had last left it. My main object of interest was to see the old M2 Combat Car/Light Tank that was displayed in front of the theater. As far as I know, it is the only one left in the world.
Imagine my surprise, when I saw that a new museum had been built since my last visit. It is incredibly well done and — dare I say — on a par with the National WW2 Museum, albeit on a much smaller scale. Out side the museum is a tank park, which traces the evolution of American Armor (at least from the WW2 period forward). The vehicles are all nicely preserved, even though it looks like modern OD has been applied to all of the US vehicles. In addition, there are informative placards next to each one. Of most interest to me, of course, were the WW2 vehicles, which include an M5 Stuar, an M4 Sherman and an M7 Priest. Some modernish Soviet vehicles are on display, all provided courtesy of the 24th ID during the Gulf War.
Inside is a history of America’s wars, as seen through the eyes of Mississippi and its participation in them. All very well done.
When I got to the WW2 section, I saw my old favorite, the M2 “Mae West” restored and on display. Everything was well done and free of charge, although donations are always welcome.
For those in the Pensacola area, Camp Shelby is about three hours away and just south of Hattiesburg MS.
Here are some images…