National Marine Corps Museum - Quantico

National Marine Corps Museum

The design of the building is inspired by the raising of the flag in Iwo Jima WW2
The design of the building is inspired by the raising of the flag in Iwo Jima WW2 | Source

The Marine Museum at Quantico


The Marine Museum at Quantico, Virginia was opened to the public on November 13th 2006.

The Museum is home to a vast array of artefacts which give the visitor a real opportunity to gain a little insight into the of the life of a Marine and how the Marine Corps has served its country.

The Museum is built on a 135 acre near to the Marine base at Quantico, which is just a short drive from Washington DC.

The building is a very modern design and its form takes its inspiration from the famous photo of the Marines raising the flag at Iwo Jima in World War 2.

The Museum is easy to find as it is well sign posted and can be seen from the I-95 highway. As can be seen from the map below the Museum is located very close to the highway.

Map

A markernational marine corps museum quantico virginia -
National Museum of the Marine Corps, 18900 Jefferson Davis Hwy, Triangle, VA 22134, USA
[get directions]

Parking Admission and Opening Times

In the present climate of financial crisis it is really good to know that parking at the museum is free, and that admission into the Museum is also free.

The Museum is open every day from 9am to 5pm with the only exception being Christmas Day when it is closed.

Although entrance into the Museum is free there are two exhibits a flight simulator and a M16 A2 rifle shooting range and entrance into each of these exhibits will cost $5 each.

In the Museum, you can trace the Corps history from its beginnings in 1775 right through to the present day.

There are two restaurants in the museum and a Gift shop which is well stocked with all sorts of gifts and souvenirs that will help you to remember your visit.

I bought the magnet below which now has pride of place on my fridge door.

It is a very striking building well suited to the multi-media exhibits that allows the visitor virtually to be in the middle of everything from Boot Camp right through to active duty.

My Fridge Magnet

I love this image along with the Semper Fi motto of the Marine Corp
I love this image along with the Semper Fi motto of the Marine Corp | Source

Leatherneck Gallery

As you enter the museum you walk straight into the glass atrium that is the Leatherneck Gallery.

Around the walls of this gallery are portraits of individual marines and inscribed on the walls quotes associate with the Corps.

Below are a selection of photographs taken in the Leatherneck Gallery

The Leatherneck Gallery - the aircraft

An AV-8B Harrier “jump jet.”
An AV-8B Harrier “jump jet.” | Source
 A Curtiss “Jenny” from the “Banana Wars” of the 1920’s
A Curtiss “Jenny” from the “Banana Wars” of the 1920’s | Source
 A deadly Corsair fighter from World War II
A deadly Corsair fighter from World War II | Source
 A deadly Corsair fighter from World War II
A deadly Corsair fighter from World War II | Source
A 3D model of a Pioneer UAV
A 3D model of a Pioneer UAV | Source

Displays on the Ground in the Leatherneck Gallery

On the ground in the Leatherneck Gallery is an LVT-1 Amphibious tractor just look how lifelike these marines look in this tableau.

The Tableau is a very realistic display of an amphibious tractor being used to breech a log wall on the Pacific island of Tarawa in WW2.

An LVT-1 Amphibious tractor

An LVT-1 Amphibious tractor
An LVT-1 Amphibious tractor | Source
An LVT-1 Amphibious tractor
An LVT-1 Amphibious tractor | Source
An LVT-1 Amphibious tractor
An LVT-1 Amphibious tractor | Source
An LVT-1 Amphibious tractor
An LVT-1 Amphibious tractor | Source
just look how lifelike these marines look in this tableau.
just look how lifelike these marines look in this tableau. | Source

A Sikorsky HRS-2 helicopter

A little further round from the amphibious tractor tableau is a Sikorsky HRS-2 helicopter that has landed and is disembarking a machine gun unit onto a Korean War position. Again, this is an extremely lifelike tableau just look at the pilot of the helicopter in the photographs below.

A Sikorsky HRS-2 helicopter

Source
Source
A Sikorsky HRS-2 helicopter
A Sikorsky HRS-2 helicopter | Source
A Sikorsky HRS-2 helicopter
A Sikorsky HRS-2 helicopter | Source

A Little Bit of Fun

If you have ever thought about what you would have looked like as a marine here in the Leatherneck gallery you have a chance to find out.

I tried the hats on but still couldn't quite pull it off, of course it does help if you are not so long in the tooth as I am, but at least I has a go.

A little bit of fun

I think I am just a little too old to pull it off lol...
I think I am just a little too old to pull it off lol...
So you want to be a Marine
So you want to be a Marine

The Jeep

Jeep all dressed up for Christmas
Jeep all dressed up for Christmas | Source

Museum Store

Also located on the ground floor off the Leatherneck gallery is the big gift shop where you can purchase a wide range of marine related items.

Museum Store

Source

The Making of a Marine

On entering this part of the museum, the first thing you come across is a marine bus and you can see the recruits gazing out of the windows with a mixture of excitement and fear on their faces.

A little further round there is a line of recruits at the camp barber waiting for that distinctive marine haircut. The haircut seems to be the first part of the processes of stripping away everything that has to do with their old life.

I got to stand in a booth with surround sound and have a drill sergeant shout very loudly at me, for young recruits it must be a very intimidating experience.

It was not very intimidating for me as I just stepped away when I had had enough I don’t think the recruits have that luxury.

The Making of a Marine

I love the American Uniforms they always look so smart.
I love the American Uniforms they always look so smart. | Source
This looks fun
This looks fun | Source
I thought that this was a British Grenadier Guard but he is in fact a Drum Major in the Marine Band
I thought that this was a British Grenadier Guard but he is in fact a Drum Major in the Marine Band | Source

The Galleries


In the museum are a number of galleries each one highlights a particular part of the Marine Corps exploits and history.

  • World War 1
  • World War 2
  • Vietnam War
  • Korean War
  • Global Expeditionary Force
  • The Legacy Walk

Each of these galleries is jam packed full of interesting artefacts and information and below are some of the photographs I took on my visit.


Through the Ages

In Miniature

As well as the life size tableaux dotted around the museum there are a variety of miniature tableaux mostly of famous battles fought by the Marines.

In the description of the tableau of the Marines at Harpers Ferry John Brown the abolitionist is mentioned this the same John Brown who’s body lies a mouldering in hiss grave.

I was struck by how realistically the poses and the actual movement have been captured in these tableaux see what you think.

Action in Miniature

I think that this is Harper's Ferry
I think that this is Harper's Ferry
look how natural the pose looks and the folds in the uniforms very realistic
look how natural the pose looks and the folds in the uniforms very realistic

Virtual Visit

Well I hope you have enjoyed this virtual visit to the Marine Corps Museum below are just a few more images to whet your appetite for the real thing.

Appetizers

Medal of Honor
Medal of Honor
A Bronze Statue of Iron Mike outside the Museum
A Bronze Statue of Iron Mike outside the Museum
I love this hat
I love this hat

More by this Author


Comments 18 comments

Candie V profile image

Candie V 4 years ago from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure!

Maggs! This is a wonderful hub! Your pictures and information are first rate! Makes this Marine museum a place I'd love to visit!


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 4 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Thanks Candie for being the first to comment you are a real star and I appreciate having your support like this it makes such a difference luv maggs :D


Candie V profile image

Candie V 4 years ago from Wherever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure!

I do adore you Maggs and try to visit and comment as often as I can!


retired06 profile image

retired06 4 years ago from Oregon, USA

Thanks for the awesome Hub! I love the information and the pictures. My nephew is a retired Marine, (who was a Drill Sargent). He lives in Virginia and works in D.C. I am going to visit him soon and look forward to visiting this museum while I am there. I am sure my nephew will be the best tour guide ever! In fact, I am going to share this Hub with him. :)


RNMSN profile image

RNMSN 4 years ago from Tucson, Az

what a tribute!! this is great Maggs, thank you for this virtual tour!! my jarhead son is very proud to be a Marine and we are proud of all of them!!


onlinereputations profile image

onlinereputations 4 years ago from Dumaguete City

You learn something new everyday. Thanks for the great Hub. I love Hubs like this. AWESOME! AWESOME! I hope it goes viral!


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 4 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi retired06, it sounds like you will indeed have the best kind of tour guide possible and having your nephew show your around should bring it all to life in a very vivid way. Thank you so much for your comment I appreciate it :D


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 4 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Barbara thanks for your lovely comment, my son was in the military the RAF until they made him redundant, they civilianised his job. He stayed on as a civilian same place same job but for more pay and less hours what the government was thinking heaven alone knows.

In the UK they call the marines bootnecks I think it is because of the collar on their dress uniform is shaped like the top of a boot or something like that but I can’t even guess why they would be called Jarheads :-D


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 4 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi, onlinereputations Thank you so much for your kind comment and it would be lovely if it went viral :D


50 Caliber profile image

50 Caliber 4 years ago from Arizona

maggs, what a great hub, I guess much has transpired in the last 20 years of my being out of touch with the world, and certainly much since my days at a couple specialty schools I attended at Quantico in the late 60s and early 70s as a Marine. I was unaware of this museum even being built. The HRS-2 helicopters were the HMM361 Flying Tigers of the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing and my inspiration to move up from a foot soldier to the airwing, I was a squad machine gunner in the 2nd battalion, 3rd Marines and at 17 I was involved in "Operation Midnight" where that helicopter model flew us into an area north of Da Nang, Vietnam in the middle of the night, I didn't know it and doubt any other than command knew it was the first time they flew a night raid, I like most was green and it was our first mission and I was actually enjoying the drama that had many for good reason scared half dead already, but we prevailed in style and the surprise sent the VC packing and our Colonel was named Ross and the nicked us as "Ross's Rice Runners" and we were at Dong Ha when I hit my 13th month and was sent home ending my first run as a corporal. The VC attacked Dong Ha and destroyed many of those copters and they moved them to Marble Mountain. I was stateside negotiating a re-enlistment to get into the helicopters and off the ground hauling the heavy gear 90 pounds plus the machine gun and ammo belts wrapped around me and every where it would fit and a side kick who went every where I went wrapped in machine gun belts to keep a 7 round per second gun fed in a fire fight. I weighed 220 pounds going in and 185 when I got home, they were not feeding me as much as I wanted and needed. I got my 2nd trip as a Sgt. and job as a "waist gunner" that later changed to crew chief, "Door Gunner". Quantico trained snipers and we were trained to shoot M60s and the 1919 Browning machine guns with twice the cartridge size but same caliber. A 30-06 vs the .308. Marines were like step kids, we got a lot of hand me down equipment, even though, we held the title "First to Fight". The question about "Jar-Heads" came about in WWII the Mason jar company started making Helmets, and a regulation hair cut, bald on the sides and flat on top, we were tagged as Jar Heads that our hair cut resembled and it was said that we were like jars, empty headed and I can tell you many a fight with other branches started over that but now a term we carry as a badge of honor. The Navy delivered us to the shores and rivers on the Mekong Delta and they called us "Sea going Bellhops" while we lounged in the shade of ships that had Helo pads and operating rooms for wounded, they were busy swabbing decks and cleaning gun batteries and we were eating a quart of ice cream for a dime, lounging in the shade after rechecking our copters for ready to arm and ride the elevator topside to lock the rotor out and add munitions and the soldiers to be dropped and based at Marble Mountain.

I need to shut up, as I feel that I'm going on too long. I am surprised that they didn't feature the Huey helos and the Jet AV8 Harrier I did see in the 70s and they are a British design and cool to watch, I saw them at a "Fire Power" air show in 29 Palms California post war and watched them come barreling over and then turn stop in mid flight do a rotation stopped in mid fligh then unleash it's missiles, rockets and the 20mm canon on tanks and other targets set in the desert for destruction for a small group of people, invitation only crowd that ended a maneuver of 5 days where everybody got practice and we got to unleash all the newest toys on our helo . Talk about spending money, our heat seeker missiles were said to be 20,000 a shot and our group of 7 Cobras coordinated popping up over the mountain ranges on set targets spent a million dollars in 7 minutes. It was my last flight as a Marine at an airshow of sorts with full ground troops and artillery, providing a show for members of the Pentagon to justify the continued purchase of all the equipment used. I have to say that it is a memorable event of seeing what we used in the flat open desert floor because the whole time in the jungle we were fly past the destruction, jet pilots were long gone on a straight climb by the time the bombs hit the deck.

Maggs sorry about running off at the keyboard and I thank you for showing me the museum and if I ever get back that way again I'll visit it.

Great photography as well, I think I mailed you some video via hub pages but don't remember if I did or just thought about it.

Blessings and Peace,

dusty


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 4 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Thanks for the wonderful comment Dusty please feel free to run off at the keyboard any time I love your comments.

I think there is enough here for a fabulous Hub if you ever do want to publish this as a hub at a later date then let me know and I can delete this so you don't get done for duplication.

We were out in Singapore 67-69 and we had guests up at the mess from the Navy, (I could have sworn that they were Marines but my hubby said no they were Navy)they were in Singapore on R&R it seemed surreal.

We were living a life in Singapore apart from the odd bit of trouble when we had curfews imposed during a period of unrest, that seemed idyllic while young men were fighting and dying.

I found it very upsetting knowing that the young men who we entertained in the mess had to go back into all that again only a few days later.

If you emailed me some video I didn't get Dusty :(

I showed my son your comment, he found it very interesting (he was in the RAF) I think he has some better photographs of some of the aircraft in the museum so I might put a few of his on the hub too.

Blessings and peace to you Dusty

Maggs :-D


alocsin profile image

alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

Definitely worth a visit the next time I'm in Virginia. I like the dioramas the best -- about how big are the figures? Voting this Up and Interesting.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 4 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi alocsin, the figures in the dioramas were small about three inchs high at most but they could have been as small as two inches.

When my brother was young he had some toy lead soldiers not as detailed as these but I would say about the same size.

You are so right definitely worth a visit next time you are in the area and it will not cost you a cent to get in or park how cool is that?


Nelson 4 years ago

Your photos are really terrific. I want to go there the next time I am in the US. I was in the USMC from 1979-83. I'd love to see this museum.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 4 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Nelson, thank you so much for your kind comments. I enjoyed my visit to this museum very much, but I am sure that you would get even more out of a visit because of your connection to the Corps.

It was moving to see the heroism and courage of the Corps you must feel proud to be a member of such an elite group (my favourite character in NCIS is Gibbs and he says once a marine always a marine).


frogyfish profile image

frogyfish 4 years ago from Central United States of America

Your photos and comments were quite interesting, and I agree that the posing of those miniature men was very realistic. I particularly enjoyed your hub because I have a brother who was a Marine pilot and he had been based at Quantico for some of his service: I have never been to that area nor seen any pictures of the Museum.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 4 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

My husband was in the Royal Navy when we married and my son served in the Royal Air force so anything to do with the military I always experience a little differently and more meaningfully because of that past military connection.

When you have a family member like you have in your brother then the military campaigns and the price that was paid in those campaigns are more than just interesting facts.

My husband and I were stationed in Singapore during the Vietnam war and I can remember hosting members of the American forces up at our mess who were on R & R for a brief time.

I often wonder what happened to those young men when they returned to the battlefield.

Our freedom comes at a high price and I think that this museum does a really good job of honouring the Marines and their role in America's past and present.

If you do get to this area in the future I can recommend a visit to this museum my son and I both enjoyed it.


frogyfish profile image

frogyfish 4 years ago from Central United States of America

maggs224, I wonder if you hosted another brother of mine who served as a Marine in Vietnam. I remember he got to Singapore for R&R briefly and then returned to Nam to 'get' a Purple Heart. Thank you for your hosting care for ALL those servicemen! It is indeed a small world.

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