The Camp Gordon Johnston Museum houses over 3000 square feet of artifacts, photos, memorabilia and memories of the soldiers, sailors and other military as well as civilian personnel who trained and worked here during the years 1942-1946. Our goal is to honor them and promote the learning and preserving the history of WWIII and portraying the gigantic effort that our nation and its allies poured into the war effort. The Museum is assembling the histories of the various units and their training as well as developing exhibits that remind and teach about the various aspects and events of WWII. Veterans have contributed the artifacts brought back from battles overseas, along with uniforms, mess kits, and all sorts of souvenirs, too numerous to name. The museum also preserves oral histories of veterans that returned for reunions or visited the museum.
Thee collection boasts a variety of interesting and exceptional artifacts donated over the years, many accompanied by the unique stories behand them. Some examples include:
The 28th Infantry Division “Bloody Bucket” patch belonging to then two star general Omar Bradley, who was the commander of the division when it trained at Camp Gordon Johnston. The story of how this patch came to be in our collection is a delightful and interesting one, as the patch was gifted to Vivian (Matthews) Hess whose father was the Camp Postmaster.
The first NAZI flag obtained by ground forces on German soil, collected by then Lt. Samuel Rhea from a German schoolhouse when the 4th Infantry crossed the Sigfried Line in September 1944.
Top Secret Plans for Operation Neptune, dated May 20, 1944, describing in detail the Naval Operations of Operation Overlord.
A full spectrum of Japanese rifles, including the type 38, type 44, type 99, type 99 “last ditch” and type 99 School rifle, as well as a type II paratroop rifle.
A mock–up of a Camp Gordon Johnston barracks, complete with sand floor (yes, they were sand in the beginning) with actual bunks, windows, screen door, stove, coal bin and lockers.
The Museum owns three vehicles, including a DUKW which represents us at events and parades. The DUKW is displayed at the museum for special events but is currently kept in Tallahassee.
And of course, the biggest artifact of all, the Carrabelle Beach across highway 98 from the museum, the setting for amphibious training featured in numerous photographs and film.
Special Exhibits: January 2021
Nuremberg & War Crime Trials
Camp Gordon Johnston WWII Museum in Carrabelle is presenting a special exhibit for the month of January on the War Crime Trials of German military and government members, of which the Nuremberg Trials are the most well known. This exhibit will open Friday, January 1, 2021 at 11 am and will be on display at the museum until January 31 at 5 pm. The museum is open every Tuesday through Saturday from 11 am to 5 pm and there is no charge for admission.
From November 1945 to October 1946 high ranking members of the German military and government were prosecuted for war crimes and crimes committed against humanity stemming from their actions before and during WWII. During the month of January the Camp Gordon Johnston Museum will present an exhibit about the trials, covering some of the more notorious defendants such as Hess, Göring, Döring, Jodl and Keitel; the prosecutors, the charges and the verdicts. The exhibit will include some WWII artifacts whose origin and path to the museum remain shrouded in mystery.
Camp Gordon Johnston WWII Museum is located in Carrabelle, directly across from Carrabelle Public Beach Park at 1873 Hwy 98 West. For more information, contact Camp Gordon Johnston Museum at (850) 697-8575 or email@example.com. Funded in part by the Franklin County Tourist Development Council.
Special Exhibits: February 2021
African Americans in WWII
February is National African American History Month. African Americans served in large numbers during WWII in spite of being denied full rights as American citizens. African Americans served in segregated units in both the Army and the Army Air Corps, one of the most recognizable being the Tuskegee Airmen. Many trained at Camp Gordon Johnston in support units like Amphibious Truck Companies, and even these participated in combat, including at Iwo Jima where 21 Army units supported the 4th and 5th Marines.