open: Tue.-Sun. 10am-4pm
tel: 512-782-5659

Brigadier General John C. L. Scribner Texas Military Forces Museum

The 45,000-square foot Texas Military Forces Museum explores the history of the Lone Star State’s militia and volunteer forces from 1823 (date of the first militia muster in Stephen F. Austin’s colony) to 1903 when the Congress created the National Guard. From 1903 to the present the museum tells the story of the Texas Army and Air National Guard, as well as the Texas State Guard, in both peacetime and wartime. The museum displays dozens of tanks, armored personnel carriers, self-propelled guns, trucks, jeeps, helicopters, jet fighters, observation aircraft and towed artillery pieces. Permanent exhibits utilize uniforms, weapons, equipment, personal items, film, music, photographs, battle dioramas and realistic full-scale environments to tell the story of the Texas Military Forces in the Texas Revolution, the Texas Navy, the Texas Republic, the Mexican War, the Battles along the Indian Frontier, the War between the States, the Spanish-American and Philippine-American Wars, World War I, World War II, the Korean War, the Cold War, Peace Keeping Deployments and the Global War on Terror. Living history programs, battle reenactments and other special events take place throughout the year. Admission to the museum is always FREE.

Donations

The Texas Military Forces Museum has embarked upon an ambitious Master Plan to bring our facility into the 21st Century. Phase 1 is complete, and we have started a Capital Campaign to raise 4 million dollars to complete the remaining phases of the master plan and create a 1 million dollar operational endowment to ensure the museum’s ability to continue to operate as a state-of-the-art institution well into the future.
We accept donations of time and artifacts as well!

Research

The library and archives are open by appointment for research to all members of the public. The museum maintains an incredible archive of various materials including:carrigan
  • World War I Service cards for every Texan who served
  • Extensive research library
  • World War II card file for the 36th Infantry Division
  • Thousands of original documents from the Texas National Guard from 1910 to the present day
  • Photo archive of pictures related to the Texas Military Forces


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August 31st, 1946
On this day in 1946, Camp Bowie, in Brownwood Texas, was declared surplus by the War Department. The camp was the second important military installation in the twentieth century to be named after James Bowie. It was established in September 1940 as an infantry and artillery training center for the Thirty-sixth Infantry Division, Texas National Guard. The first Camp Bowie in Fort Worth Texas had also been a training center for the 36th Infantry Division in WWI, 1917-1918.

In January, 1946, after they returned home from WWII, the 36th Association chose to host their first reunion meeting in Brownwood, Texas. This newspaper ad is from a special run of the Brownwood Bulletin which was printed for the reunion attendees. Although the number of WWII veterans left to attend is very small the children and grandchildren of those veterans still meet every year. Their annual meeting is this week, September 3-6 in St. Louis Mo..
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Part of an early aviation photo, with a close up of the officers closest to the plane. Some great characters in the photograph! Likely 1918- 1920s. (2 photos) ...

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Found on the back side of a newspaper clipping of Brig. General Samuel Garland in a Civil War era scrapbook--

This Civil War news column from late Feb- Early March 1863. It starts the column talking about the Confederate ram- Queen of the West which had recently (Feb. 24, 1863) captured the Federal ironclad river gunboat Indianola.

You will also note that even 151 years ago they did not think much of Congress, as they lambaste the Confederate Congress at Richmond as "The most notorious Incompetants ever gathered together in a deliberative body."
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Manuel Ornelas, a member of Company E, 141st Infantry, 36th ID, during WWII passed away today. Our thoughts and prayers to his family. ...

**HEARTBROKEN** Today this country lost a real American Hero. Manuel Ornelas, an original member of the Texas National Guard Company E, passed away today. He was an exceptional athlete and star Quarterback at Austin High in El Paso. He would go on to command a tank unit at the Battle of the Bulge, where he was wounded losing his right arm. He retired from the Army as a Captain. He was the childhood friend of Manuel Rivera (also in Company E). Mr. Ornelas was at Manuel Rivera's side at his wedding, standing as his best man. Rest in Peace Capt. Ornelas and thank you for your service to this nation. Photo: Manuel and Mary Rivera's Wedding, standing on the left as best man is Manuel Ornelas

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 a great shot of a tent city We’re on tumblr


Contact Us

Phone: 512-782-5659
Email: txmilmuseum@gmail.com
Mailing Address:
P.O Box 5218
Austin, Tx 78763

Come Visit

Here are detailed directions on how to get to the museum.

Living History/Reenactment

Nothing brings military history to life like hearing the sound of a machine gun, the boom of cannon, the rattle of musketry, the drone of aircraft engines or feeling the earth shake under you while a tank drives by. All of these experiences are available to visitors courtesy of the Texas Military Forces Museum Living History Detachment which conducts a series of battle reenactments, demonstrations, displays, parades and living history programs throughout the year to make history “come alive” for young and old alike.

The primary focus of the detachment is the 36th Infantry Division in World War II and the famous Texas Brigade during the War Between the States. However, the detachment also participates in World War I and Vietnam War events as well as other time periods.

The museum’s living historians travel around the country to take part in historic events, but the backbone of their schedule are three programs that take place on Camp Mabry each year: the Close Assault 1944 living history program which occurs over Memorial Day weekend and Veterans Day weekend and the annual Texas Military Forces Open House – Muster Day event during April.

To get involved with the museum’s living history program, check out the G Company brochure or The Civil War brochure.

To find out about upcoming events visit our events page.

From Our Newest Exhibit