A Quick Tour at Branson's Veterans Museum
Branson Veterans Memorial Museum is one of the most interesting Branson attractions as it’s in this place where you can find tons of memorabilias about the wars fought by the American veterans. This memorial museum is a national tribute to the brave soldiers who defended our liberties during the 20th century. Your visit to the museum will let you feel a powerful and emotional experience. As you roam around the museum you’ll be captivated by the stories of the men and women who sacrificed their lives for our country. You will see the most incredible collection of wartime exhibits covering the heights and depths of war time experience.
To the soldiers who lived through the wars, the memories that are brought back are vivid and overwhelming. You will feel an awe-inspiring experience as you view the wars through the prism of history. With this memorial to our war veterans, you’ll thoroughly be fascinated and humbled about the sacrifices they have made for our country. The vast exhibits that you will see inside the museum will make you curious about the personal experiences of the men and women who wore these uniforms, fired these weapons, lived as POW, wrote these letters home, flew the planes, wore these medals, rode the motorcycles, and served our country so well.
This Veterans Memorial Museum in Branson is composed of ten great walls that cover the wars and conflicts fought during the 20th century. The viewing on the war memorabilias starts in the World War I Hall, proceeding to World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, Desert Storm and more. Each hall features a display of dramatic and thought provoking exhibits such as sculptures, historical artifacts, murals, objects d’ art, thousands of authentic memorabilias that cover the conflicts, major battlefronts, campaigns, defenses, and more. On these walls, you will find names of the men and women killed in action in WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Persian Gulf, and recent conflicts of the 20th century.
The internationally renowned bronze sculptor Fred Hoppe had researched and travelled the world collecting over 2000 exhibits and displayed them in this 18,000 sq. ft. museum. Many of the exhibits that Hoppe had displayed in the museum have been compiled with the help of veterans and their families. The exhibits also included personal stories of the veterans. From the jungles of Vietnam to the deserts of Kuwait and Iraq and from the memories of decorated war veterans to the brave soldiers who served on the home front, every aspect of our country’s valiant fight for freedom has been greatly honored.
Fred’s vision in displaying exhibits to the Veterans Memorial Museum was enhanced by his desire to continue to honor the memories of the men and women and their descendants who are profoundly affected by these wars. The memorial museum is created with a design to serve as an educational center and war memorial that will endure for centuries to come and educating generations about the global clashes that made our country victorious. As you visit the museum, you’ll take a national journey through our history and freedom.
The Veterans Task Force calls the effort of Hoppe in helping create the museum as one of the “greatest tributes ever completed to honor our country’s veterans.” Fred Hoppe who hails from Nebraska was inspired by the stories and sacrifices he heard about from his father (Fred Sr.) and the men that fought alongside his father during the bloodiest battles in World War II. Fred’d father is honored with a mural and a special exhibit in the museum depicting his heroic rescue of a wounded fellow soldier.
Along with the building and funding of this memorable Branson attraction, Veterans Memorial Museum, Fred Hoppe has also written scripts for over 2000 rare military artifacts that he donated for use to the museum. Fred has spent four years trying to raise money for a memorial to honor the veterans of the 20th Century. When Fred was turned down by over 36 foundations, he says, “It became apparent that I would have to take things into my own hands. The experts kept telling me that it would take six years to complete a project of this magnitude, however with veterans dying at a rate of over one thousand per day, I was driven to finish this project quickly.”
With Fred’s great desire to put up the museum, he worked 18-hour days, seven days a week, living up to his dream to complete the project in just 10 months. With Fred’s participation in designing and construction of the building, he even cut up 70 tons of logs in a homemade sawmill in his backyard to provide lumber for the museum’s 18,000 square feet building. “Along with saving money, this allowed me to personally make sure that every aspect of the building reflected the quality our veterans deserve,” Fred said. On November 11, 2000, the museum officially opened.
After Fred Hoppe made a research and interviewed war veterans for over 25 years, he personally wrote the scripts for each of the displays that he has collected. He then arranged to work with combat artist James Dietz, Mike Hagel, and others to create dozens of combat murals. Fred has laboriously detailed the history of our country’s valiant fight for our freedom during the 20th century.
The stunning 70-foot long bronze sculpture consisting of 50 life-size soldiers running up a beach is part of the fascinating works of Fred Hoppe. The 50 combat soldiers that resemble 50 states were used as models for the life-size figures. Fred Hoppe Sr. was also made a model for the lead soldier in the world’s largest war memorial bronze sculpture. This sculpture is on display on Hwy 76 after the City of Branson purchased it in 2016.
As an internationally known sculptor, Hoppe created an amazing memorial bronze sculpture while building the museum; arranging the financing; collecting the exhibits; management and marketing of the museum; and supervising every detail of the project. Hoppe has said that the veterans deserve the very best tribute that we can give them and the ideal location for this museum is in Branson, Missouri where veterans are honored every day and patriotism is still celebrated.
Hoppe also states, "Along with the Veterans Memorial Museum being an artistic memorial to our veterans, we want to evoke from our visitors an emotional response to the far reaching implications of war and the undeniable courage of those who stood strong in the face of the enemy. Above all, this memorial is a gesture of thanks to all who died to defend these freedoms we enjoy today."
The Veterans Memorial Museum in Branson is one of the world’s most impressive tribute to those who have served our country. This gives a heartfelt tribute to the men and women who have selflessly sacrificed their lives on the line to protect our freedoms. This museum is one of the most distinctive and beautiful structures that is built in the Midwest. Constructed of hand-planed and treated logs, the museum features a rustic look and lends a comfortable and inviting atmosphere – with unparalleled quality of craftsmanship that our veterans deserve.
Branson’s Veterans Memorial Museum is such a great place to visit as it features unique displays of memorabilias of men and women who sacrificed their lives for our country.