By: Friedrich Seiltgen
Gunpowder readers are familiar with Peter Suciu’s article on 10 Places for the Gun Enthusiast to Visit This Summer. Well…here are 10 MORE for our readers to check out!
Virginia Military Institute Museum, Lexington, VA
In 1856, VMI Superintendent Smith accepted a Revolutionary war musket, and with it, founded the institute’s Museum. The museum’s 15,000 artifacts chronicle the story behind its alumni. Among the ranks of VMI graduates are Nobel & Pulitzer prize recipients, movie stars, politicians, and, of course, military greats like Gen. George Patton. The school’s Henry Stewart gun collection consists of many rare pieces, including the air rifle carried by the 1803 Lewis and Clark expedition.
Location & Website: 319 Letcher Ave, Lexington, VA 24450
Buckhorn Saloon & Texas Ranger Museum, San Antonio, TX
The Buckhorn is located just two blocks from the Alamo and one block from the famous River Walk. The original saloon was opened in 1881 by 17-year-old Albert Friedrich. Friedrich was a bartender and bellhop at the nearby Southern Hotel who decided to open his own business. Friedrich discovered that many a customer were short of funds, so he decided to take trophies, horns, and antlers in trade for food and drink. Hence, the Buckhorn Museum collection consists of more than 520 wildlife species, including a 1,056-pound black marlin, a 10,000-year-old Irish elk, and a 78-point buck! The Texas Ranger museum consists of more than a century of priceless Texas Ranger artifacts and firearms.
Location & Website: 318 E Houston St, San Antonio, TX 78205, (210) 247-4000
USAF Armament Museum, Eglin AFB, FL
Located at Eglin AFB in Florida’s panhandle, the USAF armament museum contains a variety of various aircraft, guns, bombs, and missiles. The museum houses more than 20 aircraft, including an AC-47 gunship, aka, “Puff the Magic Dragon,” as well as the AC-130 “Spectre” Gunship, equipped with their 20mm “Gatling Guns” and .308 “Miniguns”
Location & Website: 100 Museum Dr, Eglin AFB, FL 32542
Collectors Firearms, Houston, TX
While the name is Collectors Firearms, the store has an ever-changing inventory of more than 10,000 new, used, collectors, class III, antique, and modern firearms. Along with edged weapons, militaria, uniforms, books, and accessories, Collectors has you covered. The store is huge and looks like a museum with its Civil War cannons and muskets. Check it out on your next trip to Texas!
Location & Website:3301 Fondren Rd O, Houston, TX 77063
Gene Autry National Center, Los Angeles, CA
The Autry Center, named after the legendary actor and singer, houses the George Gamble Firearms Gallery and features some of the finest firearms ever made from America’s iconic gun makers. The display illustrates the gun’s role in America’s history, from self-defense, to hunting, and war. Included are guns of Teddy Roosevelt, Annie Oakley’s pearl gripped, gold plated handguns, and many others.
Location & Website: 4700 Western Heritage Way, Los Angeles, CA 90027
Chickamauga/Chattanooga Military Park, Chickamauga, GA
The Chickamauga & Chattanooga Military Park is a must! The park, which is the first military park in the country, was founded in 1895 and spans more than 9,000 acres. The park houses a real treat in the Claude Fuller gun collection. This collection is one of the few displayed study firearms collections in the country, and it takes the visitor through the evolution of all firearms, not just Civil War weapons. Make a trip to the park – it is well worth the time.
Location & Website: 3370 LaFayette Road, Fort Oglethorpe, GA 30742
American Police Hall of Fame and Museum, Titusville, FL
The museum is the first national museum and memorial dedicated to all law enforcement officials in federal, state, county, and local agencies killed in the line of duty. The museum hosts almost 11,000 exhibits from antique vehicles, law enforcement tools, and historical firearms. For those of you on vacation from anti-constitutional states, it also offers a 50-foot shooting range with 24 positions, gun rentals, and training classes.
Location & Website: 6350 Horizon Dr, Titusville, FL 32780
J.M. Davis Arms & Historical Museum, Claremore, OK
Billed as the largest privately held firearms collection in the World, the J.M. Davis museum is home to more than 13,000 firearms and thousands of non-firearm artifacts. The collection of John Monroe Davis started at the age of seven, when the sickly young Davis had to be “bribed” to take his medicine with the gift of a shotgun! Throughout the years, Davis would purchase so many private gun collections that at one point, he had to limit himself to buying no more than $3,000-worth of guns per month!
Location & Website” 330 N JM Davis Blvd, Claremore, OK 74017
John Moses Browning Firearms Museum, Ogden, UT
Browning is considered ”America’s Gun Maker,” and this museum showcases four generations of Browning family designs. Every one of Browning’s designs is on display here. The museum, with support from the Browning firearms company, is a world-class exhibition of the genius of John Moses Browning.
Location & Website: 2501 Wall Ave, Ogden, UT,84401
Cody Firearms Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Cody, WY
The Cody Firearms Museum contains more than 7,000 firearms and 30,000 firearms-related items. The firearms museum started in 1975 when the Olin Corporation lent its Winchester gun collection to the museum. In 1988, the collection was gifted to the center. The museum is located just east of Yellowstone National Park and is a great place to stop on the way.
Location & Website: 720 Sheridan Av, Cody Wyoming
Friedrich Seiltgen is a retired Master Police Officer with 20 years of service with the Orlando Police Department. He currently conducts training in Lone Wolf Terrorism, Firearms, First Aid, and Law Enforcement Vehicle Operations in Florida. His writing has appeared in The Counter Terrorist Magazine, Homeland Security Today, and The Journal of Counterterrorism & Homeland Security International. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.