The Lowcountry has an affection for museums. It has a naval museum, art museum, house museums, African-American history museum, manuscript museum, Confederate museum, fire museum, Best Friend museum, children’s museum, and the nation’s first museum (1773), which addresses local cultural and natural history.
Then there is the American Military Museum. It is small, and it is not highly visible. It struggles financially, and now it is facing closure because it is losing its lease.
The enterprise, begun by George Meagher in 1987, has been in a building next to the S.C. Aquarium for nine years, paying a very favorable rate. That is ending. And unless the right place at the right price presents itself, the museum’s thousands of uniforms, weapons and artifacts will no longer be on display.
It would be a loss to the community, many of whom have yet to discover it. It would be a loss to tourists, many of whom come to Charleston because they are interested in history. And it would be a sad irony because the Lowcountry takes great pride in its rich military lore.
Schuyler Kropf reported that Military Museum organizers have talked with North Charleston officials about moving there, but for now, the doors are scheduled to be shut on May 21.
The American Military Museum has had to fight one financial battle after another to stay solvent.
Now it is time for the community to provide some strategic relief.