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News & Events

Mineral Wells, TX
May 14, 1999

Museum Incorporates Under New Name - Closes on Property

Mineral Wells, TX - On Tuesday, April 27th, The National Vietnam War Museum received clearance from the Texas Secretary of State to incorporate under that name. While the original choice was to use the name The National Museum of the Vietnam War, because of Texas’ laws of incorporation, a conflict was discovered. Another museum was already incorporated in the state, whose official name also started with The National Museum of … As they were not willing to authorize the use of that naming convention by another organization, The National Vietnam War Museum was required to find a new name prior to incorporating.

While the name has changed, the mission of the museum has not, providing a place of learning to aid in the understanding of an era. Toward that end, the museum has recently acquired 12 acres in Mineral Wells. This property, bordered on the north by US Highway 180 and on the south by the Rails-to-Trails State Park, is just east of the former Fort Wolters. Fort Wolters was the site of the US Army Primary Helicopter School and the place where the majority of the Vietnam era helicopter pilots began their training.

“This is a day we have been looking forward to for three long years,” said Museum Director Charles S. Bogle, when the museum committee closed on the property. “It is an incredible sense of accomplishment to see that we have made significant progress toward achieving our dream.” In addition to the work of the museum committee in reaching this first goal, a great deal of credit goes to a local Mineral Wells civic organization - The Friends of the Museum – which was formed last year. This organization was an outgrowth of the local participation in helping the museum committee and the Fort Wolters Chapter of the Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association in bringing the Vietnam Moving Wall to Mineral Wells over the Fourth of July.

Largely through the efforts of the Friends organization, the funds for the purchase of the property were raised in the local community through a program of “Honorary Landowners.” Through this, and other tax-exempt contributions, the museum has raised a steady, albeit modest stream of funds. However, in the near future, a national architectural competition for the design of the museum building and grounds will be announced. This will be accompanied by the first national fund raising drive, with the ultimate goal of opening the museum in the fourth quarter of 2002.

Despite its cultural and military importance, there is no national venue dedicated to examining the Vietnam War. The National Vietnam War Museum will be designed to put the experience in broader cultural and historical perspective and further our understanding of this important moment in American history.

To learn more about the efforts to establish The National Vietnam War Museum, contact them at P.O. Box 146, Mineral Wells, TX 76068.




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