Pin from the museum in Fredricksburg

Pin from the museum in Fredricksburg

I have visited the museum in its older state and now in its refurbished state (as shown in the pictures.) I got this pin on a visit in August, 2014.

Nimitz Hotel part of Museum

Nimitz Hotel part of Museum

The National Museum of the Pacific War is located in Fredericksburg, Texas, the boyhood home of Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz. Fleet Admiral Nimitz served as CinCPAC, Commander in Chief, United States Pacific Fleet during World War II. The six acre site includes the Admiral Nimitz Museum which is housed in the old Nimitz Hotel and tells the story of Fleet Admiral Nimitz beginning with his life as a young boy through his naval career as well as the evolution of the old hotel.

The Admiral Nimitz Foundation was established in 1964 (as the Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz Naval Museum, Inc.) to support a museum honoring Fredericksburg’s native son, Commander-in-Chief of Allied Forces, Pacific Ocean Area.

The hotel owned by Nimitz’s grandfather Charles Henry Nimitz was restored to its original design and renamed the Admiral Nimitz Museum by an act of the Texas legislature in 1968. The original intent was to focus only as a memorial to Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz. In 2000, the complex was renamed Admiral Nimitz State Historic Site—National Museum of the Pacific War and is dedicated exclusively to the Pacific Theater battles of World War II.

The Pacific Combat Zone is a re-creation of a Pacific island battlefield, and includes a Quonset hut hospital, a PT boat and base, Japanese tank, palm trees, and machine gun placements. Re-enactments, called Living History exhibits, are held throughout the year. The Veterans’ Walk of Honor and Memorial Wall can be found within the Memorial Courtyard.

Entrance to Museum

Entrance to Museum

On May 8, 1976, the 130th anniversary of the founding of Fredericksburg, the Japanese government gifted the museum with the Japanese Garden of Peace. The garden was designed by Taketora Saita as a replica of the private garden of Gensui The Marquis Tōgō (1848–1934), the main Imperial Japanese Navy commander in the Russo-Japanese War. Fleet Admiral Nimitz personally admired the Marquis Tōgō, having previously helped to establish a war memorial to the Japanese admiral.

The outdoor Plaza of the Presidents was dedicated on September 2, 1995, the 50th anniversary of Fleet Admiral Nimitz’ acceptance of the Japanese Instrument of Surrender aboard the USS Missouri (BB-63). The plaza is a tribute to the ten United States Presidents who served during World War II: Franklin D. Roosevelt (Commander in Chief), Harry S Truman (Commander in Chief), General of the Army Dwight D. Eisenhower (Army), John F. Kennedy (Navy), Lyndon B. Johnson (Navy), Richard Nixon (Navy), Gerald Ford (Navy), Jimmy Carter (Navy), Ronald Reagan (Army) and George H. W. Bush (Navy).

George H.W. Bush cut the ribbon in 1991 for the $3 million gallery bearing his name. The George H.W. Bush Gallery is home to an I.J.N. Ko-hyoteki class midget submarine (which participated in the attack on Pearl Harbor), a Japanese N1K “Rex” floatplane, and an American B-25. In 1991, the land for the Bush Gallery was bought from H-E-B Grocery. Money for the gallery was privately raised in the 1990s through the efforts of finance chairman Lee Bass and a board that included baseball star Nolan Ryan and Ernest Angelo, a former mayor of Midland. Admission tickets cover both museums.

Bush later reflected that “terrifying experiences” of war helped him to become a man: “I have often wondered why me, why was I spared when others died.”

On December 7, 2009 the museum hosted the Grand Re-Opening of the newly expanded George H. W. Bush Gallery where the second floor houses the Nimitz Education and Research Center. Former President George H. W. Bush his wife Barbara, along with Texas Governor Rick Perry, cut the ribbon. The ceremony was attended by survivors of the Attack on Pearl Harbor, and drew a crowd of 5,000 people.

Location: 07-E3

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