Kansas Museum of Military History

Kansas Museum of Military History Military History from WWI through Present Located in Augusta, Kansas, the museum is housed in the machine shop once owned and donated by the Williams Pipeline Company.

The museum houses over 10,000 artifacts many of which are on display; including a Huey helicopter, Kiowa helicopter, Vietnam era gun truck, Tanks, and many personal items

Mission: The mission of the Kansas Museum of Military History is dedicated to honoring American service personnel; past, present and future throught the acquisition and preservation of artifacts from all conflicts involving the U.S., and to use these artifacts to educate future generations about this facet of our history.

Operating as usual

WWII Airborne Demonstration Team

WWII Airborne Demonstration Team

76 YEARS AGO, TODAY—This is where American boots first set foot on Dutch soil at the start of Operation Market Garden, September 17, 1944, The Eerde Drop Zone, the Netherlands. This photo was taken last year by one of our jumpers on the 75th Anniversary of Operation Market Garden.

76 years ago, this field and many like it across Holland, marked the stage for the largest airborne assault in history. In record time, the Allies delivered over 34,600 men, representing the American 82nd and 101st ABN, the 1st British ABN, and the 1st Independent Polish ABN Brigade.

20,011 of those troops were delivered by parachute. The balance, by glider—along with 1,736 vehicles and 263 pieces of artillery.

The casualty rate was high. Operation Market Garden lasted for nine days. Allied losses including ground forces amounted to over 17,000 killed, wounded or missing. This was the cost of liberation.

What this photo shows is liberation’s legacy, 76 years of peace! 76 years of freedom—freedom from a tyranny so dark that the people of Holland today still celebrate September 17 as a day of deliverance. There are monuments to that deliverance across Holland. This simple undisturbed field is one of them. For the Americans, this field is where deliverance began.

Members of our team landed in this area last year along with WWII Veterans Jim "Pee Wee" Martin (G/506) and Vincent J. Speranza and our hosts, the Round Canopy Parachuting Team Netherlands to whom we still thank for some great memories. Join us tomorrow when we share an untold story about that jump, one that you’ll appreciate if you’re looking for some inspiration to end your week.

Photo by our team member, Jumper, and U.S. Army Veteran, Jacob Stottlemyer

Next up in the restoration shop at KMMH , a 2.36 inch Bazooka rocket

Next up in the restoration shop at KMMH , a 2.36 inch Bazooka rocket

Another project completed at KMMH, a 105mm Cartridge M1 High Explosive artillery round with hand polished brass case

Another project completed at KMMH, a 105mm Cartridge M1 High Explosive artillery round with hand polished brass case

Mk42 Mod7 inert trainer for the quickstrike sea mine from our collection

Mk42 Mod7 inert trainer for the quickstrike sea mine from our collection

M551 Sheridan walk around

M551 Sheridan walk around

Walk around of the M551 Sheridan at the Kansas Museum of Military History

Ned Forney, Writer, Saluting America's Veterans

Ned Forney, Writer, Saluting America's Veterans

She sacrificed her life so that others might live . . .

On August 25, 1950, the hospital ship USS Benevolence (AH-13), heading towards San Francisco Bay, and the SS Mary Luckenbach, a freighter steaming in the opposite direction, slammed into one another.

Enveloped in fog, the two ships had collided head-on in the waters near Golden Gate Bridge.

The 520-foot Benevolence - which had ferried thousands of GIs home from WWII and had participated in “Operation Crossroads” (the 1946 atomic bomb tests in Bikini Atoll) - immediately began taking on water.

Within seconds, the 520-foot hospital ship with over 500 crewmen, medical personnel, and civilian workers, began taking on water.

Minutes later, with the ship listing heavily to port, the announcement was made to abandon ship. Among those plunging into the dark, cold waters of San Francisco Bay were 15 female nurses scheduled to deploy to Korea later that week.

"Our medical officer, Capt. Riggs, tied all of us together with rope so we wouldn't get separated,” one of the nurses remembered. "He slung two pieces of wood together and shoved us onto it." Once in the freezing water, hypothermia began to set in.

Another nurse, Catharine Harkins, later said, "I can't swim a stroke, and it wouldn't have made a difference if I could. The waves were too high and the water too cold. I had my rosary so I prayed . . . they told us to kick our legs a little in order to keep our blood circulation up.”

At 5:45 pm the Benevolence vanished beneath the churning waves of San Francisco Bay. Over the next three hours, 505 military personnel and civilians - most suffering from severe hypothermia - were plucked from the Bay’s icy waters. Twenty three, however, perished.

US Navy nurse Lt. Wilma “Leddie” Ledbetter, who had served in the US Navy Nurse Corps during WWII and had returned to active duty in 1950, was one of them.

Fellow nurse Dorothy Venverloh later said her friend had insisted that others be rescued first and when finally pulled out of the water, "She looked kind of pinkish-blue . . . and wasn't responding.” Ledbetter, who days before had told her family she was looking forward to serving in Korea, never regained consciousness.

The 38-year-old WWII veteran from Chillicothe, Texas, had suffered a fatal heart attack, brought on by exhaustion and hypothermia.

Wilma Ledbetter, who had spent a lifetime serving others and had never married, was buried days later at Chillicothe Cemetery next to her parents.

Wilma’s younger sister, Emily Jane Shoemaker, never forget her older sister. "She was more like a mother to me,” she later said. Remarkably, Wilma had used money she made during WWII to pay for her younger sister's college tuition, allowing Emily to attend and graduate from McMurry College in Abilene, Texas.

The act of generosity changed Emily's life. She went on to become a much-loved teacher and spent 30 years in the classroom inspiring students. Ms. Shoemaker passed away on December 31, 2018, at the age of 88.

The SS Mary Luckenbach received minor damage to her bow and no one on the ship was injured.

Today we pay tribute to Wilma Ledbetter, her family, all those who perished in the icy waters off Golden Gate Bridge on August 25, 1950.

Lest we forget.

Gary Sinise

Gary Sinise

America lost another Medal of Honor hero today. Korean War veteran SFC Ronald E Rosser.
He tells his own amazing story in this American Legion video.
It was a great honor to know you sir. Thank you for serving our country.
God bless you.


The lady's volleyball team from Douglass High School came to the museum last weekend for their team pictures.

The lady's volleyball team from Douglass High School came to the museum last weekend for their team pictures.


Had our best turn out in weeks at KMMH this weekend, a BIG Thank You to everyone that toured today.


Adapted from:
For the Fallen
With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
America mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill; Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres,
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted;
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond America's foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain;
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

Texas Dreaming

Texas Dreaming


We are open today 1 August, what a great day to tour the museum.

Armed Forces Insurance

Armed Forces Insurance

Today the United States Army Chaplain Corps celebrates 245 years of helping, mentoring, counseling, and teaching soldiers! #OurMissionIsYou #ProDeoEtPatria




Due to large amounts of water in the museum because of our leaky roof. we will be closed today 11 July.


The museum will be closed tomorrow July 4th so our staff can be with their families.

On the 70th anniversary of the Korean War, vets urge remembrance
On the 70th anniversary of the Korean War, vets urge remembrance

On the 70th anniversary of the Korean War, vets urge remembrance

Retired Army Lt. Col. William "Bill" Slavins made a plaque for his home in Seminole a few years ago to memorialize the men from his company who were lost in combat one night in the Korean Wa

Trucks of the Vietnam War - Trucks of War

Trucks of the Vietnam War - Trucks of War

TGIF and Happy Friday to you all Jack's Chrome Shop Fam!! It's been a little while, but today we are back with our brand new Trucks of War series. In this se...


due to the large amount of water inside the museum from the recent rains. we will be closed today. see you next saturday.

No Bullet Got Me Yet: Father Kapaun in the Korean War

No Bullet Got Me Yet: Father Kapaun in the Korean War

Chaplain Kapaun landed with 10,000 men of the 1st Cavalry Division at P’ohhang-dong, South Korea on July 18, 1950. 70th anniversary coming up!

Military History Events

Military History Events

Seventy-six years ago today - the longest day.


135 N Walnut St
Augusta, KS

General information

Hours are: Saturdays 10am to 4pm To travel to the museum from Wichita, KS, get on US 54 East to Augusta, once in Augusta one will come to the junction of US 54 and Hwy 77 also known as Walnut Street. Turn South (right) and travel about 5 blocks to the Museum, if you cross the railroad tracks, you have just missed us!

Opening Hours

Saturday 10:00 - 16:00


(316) 867-2063


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Wow we have been in Kansas 25 years and never even heard of this. See you in the fall ;-)
Gift Shop Store Manager: I Just released in July 2018 I have the Guide to Aircraft Museums, USA & Canada, 28th ed. ISBN 0-9749772-6-8 I would like to offer this to your Gift Shop or anyone seeing this post It retails for $28 Wholesale is $14.00 for any quantity 2 or more I also offer the book on CD in PDF format Retail is $21 Wholesale is $10 I send an invoice with the books. Below is how your museum is listed Pictures and details are on my web site I would also like to advertise in your Museum Newsletter Michael Blaugher [email protected] www.aircraftmuseums.com Augusta - Kansas Museum of Military History, 135 South Hwy 77, 67010, (316) 775-1425, Sat 10-4, Adm Adult $3, Under 12 $1, Gift Shop, www.kmmh.org Avid Flyer BD-5 Easy Riser H-1(UH) H-58(OH) High Max Penguin Pizza Peddler HG Quickie Volscraft
A little practical way to honor a Veteran… I’ve asked this man to tell his story. Steve Woelk of Basehor, Kansas, was in the Navy in 1968 when he and the entire crew of the USS Pueblo was taken captive by the North Koreans. They were held for 11 months, abused and tortured, and the ship never returned. This is a bit of forgotten history, but this man deserves to tell his story. Steve is now in his 70’s. Please come hear him tell his story in about 30 minutes. [Thursday, November 15th, Johnny’s Tavern, 6765 W 119th St, Overland Park, order meal or appetizer at 6:45pm, Steve will have the floor by 7:15pm. Please RSVP to Tim O’Brien at [email protected] or 573-528-1574.]
My name is Marvin Adcock,and I have been trying unsuccessfully for several years to locate a large navy ship's anchor to be placed in our All Veteran's Memorial Park in Cottonwood Falls, Kansas. I was stationed onboard the U.S.S. Piedmont making two deployments to Vietnam, and I currently serve as Color Guard Commander of Chase County All Veterans Committee. The vets of Chase County began building our Veteran's Memorial Park in the late 90's, and we currently have on display a Chase County Veteran's Wall, cenotaph of Chase Countians who gave the ultimate sacrifice, a band stand gazebo, a Huey helicopter, an M1 tank, and an anchor that is small and literally goes unnoticed. I have been in contact with NavSea and with Naval History and Heritage Command, but there are no ship's anchors, props, or other Navy artifacts available through them. We are a small rural Kansas community, but we have immense pride in both our country, and in our veterans. If you could please share this post to help spread our message I would very much appreciate it. The Chase County All Veteran's Committee salutes you, and may God bless America!