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The Korean War, often referred to as the “Forgotten War” is being remembered at the U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center (USAHEC) with a new special exhibit.  On Armed Forces Day, May 18, 2019, and in anticipation of the 70th commemoration of the start of the Korean War in June 2020, the Center will open a new exhibit - “Where the Hell is Korea?” – Warfare in the land of Sorrow.

Jack Leighow, the Director of the Army Heritage Museum at USAHEC explains why this exhibit was needed.  “The Korean War is often overshadowed by the sheer magnitude of World War II and by the media coverage and social upheaval associated with the Vietnam War.  This exhibit seeks to illuminate this conflict and once again demonstrate the adaptability, toughness, and dedication of the Soldiers of the United States Army through the eyes of the Soldiers themselves".

This was and still is a difficult war for many Americans to understand.  Korea, far away and a minor theater during WWII, was unknown to many in the country.  However, when North Korean communist forces crossed the demarcation line between the two Koreas in June 1950, our Nation was pulled into a conflict that today still lacks a final signed peace treaty and remains an international concern.  More than 1.8 million U.S. Service Members served in the theater of war from 1950 to July 1953 and more than 36,000 died.  Another 103,000 were wounded.  United Nation participants from 15 other nations suffered more than 3,000 killed and almost 12,000 wounded.  Korean, North and South, and Chinese military casualties exceeded 1.2 million and civilian casualties exceeded 1.6 million. Seventy years later, the war still has lasting and dividing effects regionally and internationally.

Two years in planning, the exhibit attempts to promote a better understanding of the war through graphic presentation of the war’s phases and through the stories of the Soldiers who fought and those that supported Soldiers on the front lines.  In total, more than 12 Soldiers’ personal stories are highlighted in the exhibit.

They include Corporal Jack Zimmermann, a Holocaust survivor, who as a boy, served as a runner with the Polish Resistance.  Emigrating from Poland to the U.S. after World War II, Zimmermann enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1949.  His armor unit, the 6th Battalion, reached Pusan on July 30, 1950 and joined the 24th Infantry Division.  After the Inchon landing, his unit advances to the Yalu and subsequently retreats after the Chinese People’s Liberation Army intervened. 

Another is Captain Anna Mae McCabe Hays who served as a nurse in the 4th Field Hospital.  In the year after the September 1950 Inchon landing, she and the members of her unit cared for more than 25,000 patients in a small 400-bed hospital, with only thirty-one nurses, several doctors, and support personnel.  After the war, she would serve as the personal nurse of President Eisenhower when he was recovering from his heart attack, and in 1970, she became the first female to attain the rank of general officer in the Army.

The exhibit also highlights often overlooked aspects of the war and particular units – the Eighth Army’s partisan forces.  These forces and their mission in the Korean War remained unnoticed for almost 40 years and were only made public in 1990.  A forerunner to today’s Special Operations units, our partisan elements operated clandestinely in territory held by North Korean and Chinese Communist Forces.  Composite units of U.S. and Korean Soldiers, these partisan forces conducted both land and amphibious operations that sought to disrupt enemy operations, damage and destroy infrastructure, and report on troop movements and preparations.  

In addition to showcasing the stories of individual Soldiers, the exhibit highlights the war graphically and through photographic images.  Included are maps that highlight decisive phases of the war and a photo of Chaplain Burgess Riddle of the 17th Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division, as he is holding his unit’s Thanksgiving service along the Yalu River in 1950, while his assistant plays a field pump organ.   On the other end of the spectrum, several display panels showcase the transportation and distribution of beer to the troops from the United States to Soldiers in the field. 

The tools of the Soldiers, both allied and enemy, are also on display.  The U.S. Soldier’s clothing, accouterments, and weapons, - to include the M1 Garand, the 75 mm, and the M3 Grease Gun - are contained in the exhibit.  So too are those of the Chinese and North Korean Soldiers.  A North Korean Flag, a Soviet revolver, and a Japanese light machine gun are displayed.  Several unique items are also presented.  These include a portable pump organ used by chaplains in the field, the shoulder patch of the United Nations Partisan Forces Korea, and a bugle used by the Chinese Volunteers to coordinate troop movements during an attack.

The exhibit will continue to be on display, in the Soldier Experience Gallery beginning May 18, 2019.  The staff of the U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center hopes that you come to visit this often overlooked conflict. The Center also has other exhibits, including the Soldier Experience Gallery and the Army Heritage Trail, a mile long outdoor interactive trail with historical macro exhibits from the French and Indian War through Current Operations. Additional exhibits currently focus on World War I, World War II artwork, and Reserve Forces. The Center is open to the public Monday through Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sundays 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. and offers free admission and parking. To learn more about USAHEC and all that it has to offer, please go to ahec.armywarcollege.edu.

 

Author:  Mike Perry, Army Heritage Center Foundation

Tagged in: Korean War
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The U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center (USAHEC) is excited to announce this year’s theme for our 2019 Army Heritage Days program, “Remembering D-Day,” commemorating the 75th anniversary of one of the most famous campaigns of WWII. USAHEC is highlighting the anniversary with two D-Day focused lectures, displays, WWII aircraft flyover, and special programs throughout the two day event, as well as an increase in equipment and reenactors on the Army Heritage Trail. As always, Army Heritage Days, will encompass the history of the Army and the development of the American Soldier from pre-French and Indian War to current operations. Events will run both May 18th and 19th, 2019 from 9am to 5pm each day.

New to Army Heritage Days this year will be a WWII aircraft flyover scheduled for Saturday and Sunday. See and hear the C-47 transport which dropped paratroopers and supplies on the French countryside and towed gliders into the sky above Normandy. Also featured will be the workhorse fighter of WWII, the P51 Mustang. Of course, we will be bringing back old favorites such as the Veterans Meet and Greet, lectures by notable historians, the kid’s passport program, and informational programs by the reenactors on the Army Heritage Trail. As always, the event will also feature a used book sale in the Museum Store.

Event admission and parking are free and open to the public. USAHEC will release more information as the schedule is confirmed. For the most up to date information, please follow #CountdowntoAHD on USAHEC’s social media pages or visit www.usahec.org. For further questions, please contact 717-245-3972.

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Carlisle’s Walmart is teaming up with the Army Heritage Center Foundation to honor and thank local veterans through a $1,000 grant to the Foundation’s Veterans’ Cafe program.

 

The Veterans’ Cafe provides free veteran breakfasts and other events throughout the region.  Veterans of all eras and services are invited to attend, along with their friends and family.

 

“These events bring veterans together to share their stories of service,” says Foundation Education Director Jeff Hawks.  “The Foundation manages the Veterans’ Cafe, but the program is possible because of community partners like Walmart.”  Other sponsors for the Veterans’ Cafe include Hoffman Funeral Home, Humana, Inc., and United Concordia.

 

Hawks describes the veterans who have shared their stories: “We’ve had D-Day veterans, Vietnam veterans, and veterans who never left the States and didn’t think they had a story to tell until they started telling it.  Every veteran did his or her part; every veteran has a story to tell.”

 

Veterans’ Cafe events include Pinning Ceremonies for Vietnam era veterans.  As part of the Department of Defense’s 50th anniversary commemoration of the Vietnam War, the Foundation distributes official commemorative pins.  “Many of the men and women who served during the Vietnam era never got the thanks they deserved,” says Hawks, “I am honored to have the privilege of presenting them with this small token of appreciation from a grateful nation.”

 

The next Veterans’ Cafe event will take place on February 22 at Frederick House in Carlisle.  The event will mark the anniversary of Operation Desert Storm with a presentation by COL (Ret.) Frank Hancock, followed by a Vietnam Veteran pinning ceremony.  For more information or to RSVP, please contact the Army Heritage Center Foundation at 717-258-1102 or email eddirector@armyheritage.org.

 

The Army Heritage Center Foundation is the non-profit friends group for the U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center in Carlisle. 

 

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There is an old saying, “Don’t change something if it works…,” so Reenactor Recruitment Day is back at the U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center (USAHEC) for the 8th year running with hundreds of opportunities for visitors to interact with history! Experience military reenacting and living history up close and personal on Saturday, February 9, 2019 from 10:00AM to 4:00PM in USAHEC's Visitor and Education Center. This free event is open to the public and is an annual favorite. The event will feature dozens of different living history organizations including over three hundred reenactors from all periods of U.S. Army and world military history. At 11:30 AM, the Army Heritage Center Foundation will sponsor a special lecture from military fiction author Chris Formant as he speaks about his new book, Saving Washington: The Forgotten Story of the Maryland 400 and the Battle of Brooklyn. Reenactor Recruitment Day is not only a great outing for kids and history aficionados alike, it also serves as an opportunity for reenactors to meet with members of other living history organizations and to discuss living history with professional historians.

Reenactor Recruitment Day features hundreds of living historians representing Soldiers and other service members from pikemen and swordsmen of the 16th century, to Civil War cavalry, to Desert Storm medics. The event will also include adversary units, allied units, and American forces from every era. Reenactors will be in period dress and have table displays where they will be available to answer any questions, talk about their equipment and materials, discuss their upcoming activities, and highlight the importance of reenacting as a way to keep history alive. Come to the USAHEC to experience history, live!

At 11:30AM, on February 9, 2019, the Army Heritage Center Foundation will present a lecture and discussion from historical fiction author Chris Formant. Mr. Formant’s latest novel, Saving Washington: The Forgotten Story of the Maryland 400 and the Battle of Brooklyn, has been labeled as a #1 new release for biographical fiction by Amazon.com and follows the story of two young Soldiers who enlist to fight the British threat to their homes and families. Mr. Formant is a former top executive of a multi-billion dollar technology company who now turns extensive research into easily accessible historical fiction.

The 8th Annual Reenactor Recruitment Day is free and open to the public, including children of all ages. Our exhibit galleries, including The Soldier Experience, “Goodbye Broadway, Hello France,” and “A Call to Arms: The Story of the U.S. Army Reserves,” will be open, as will the Museum Store and an extended book sale. For more information, including directions and the event flyer, please visit the USAHEC website at www.USAHEC.org. For questions, please call 717-245-3972.

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Strategic and Organizational Issues of the Early American Revolutionary War

By LTC Derek W. Beck, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army War College

 

The early days of the American Revolution were wrought with bloodshed and a confusing mixture of political doubt and military uncertainty. The powder keg of rebellion wreaked havoc on the ability of political and military leaders of the young revolution to concentrate on the strategic and operational imperatives of creating a successful break from their mother country. On Thursday, February 7, 2019, at 7:15 PM, the U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center in Carlisle, PA will host author LTC Derek Beck as he speaks about his two books, Igniting the American Revolution:1773-1775 and The War Before Independence: 1775-1776. LTC Beck will look at the first years of the American Revolution from a strategic perspective, with special emphasis on organizing and equipping the young Continental Army amidst the tribulations American political and military leaders faced.

LTC Derek Beck’s first book, Igniting the American Revolution: 1773-1775, covers the period from the Boston Tea Party to the first running battle which began at Lexington and Concord in April 1775. His second book, which is a sequel to the first and entitled The War Before Independence: 1775-1776, resumes the story with the Battle of Bunker Hill through to Washington’s battle to retake Boston. In this talk, LTC Beck will summarize the timeline of events while highlighting some of the strategic issues faced by military commanders on both sides of the fight. He will also discuss the organizational and logistical issues the new Continental Army faced.

LTC Derek W. Beck is a historian, filmmaker, and an officer in the US Air Force Reserve. He is a current US Army War College resident student. His recent assignments include serving as a senior operations officer at the Joint Space Operations Center, Vandenberg AFB, California, and most recently at the Air Force Central Command Headquarters, Shaw AFB, South Carolina, where he supported operations in the Middle East. Derek’s two books are on the American Revolution: Igniting the American Revolution: 1773-1775 (Sourcebooks, 2015) and its sequel The War Before Independence: 1775-1776 (Sourcebooks, 2016). LTC Beck holds a master’s degree in engineering and management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

 

DATE: Thursday, February 7, 2019

TIME: Doors open at 6:30 PM and the talk begins at 7:15 PM

PLACE: USAHEC, Visitor and Education Center, Multipurpose Room

For updates and any last-minute changes in lecture meeting times and places,

please check www.USAHEC.org or call the Information Desk at 717-245-3972.

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