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About Museum History

Our Museum History

The Corporal Larry E. Smedley National Vietnam War Museum, Inc., (formerly known as the National Vietnam Veterans War Museum) established in 2000, is a Central Florida non-profit museum. This organization also assists the servicemen and women of all wars and branches of military service.

Recognizing that the tragedy of the war in southeast Asia has become comfortably distant in the minds of many Americans, this organization has embarked on a very ambitious undertaking – building a war museum that will bring the people and events of this bitter, divisive conflict to life, so that current and future generations of Americans can remember the Vietnam Veterans’ legacy of service, sacrifice and valor. The museum is dedicated to all Americans, from local schools and youth organizations to soldiers currently defending our great nation, in the hope that everyone passing through the gates will leave with a better understanding of past and present military conflicts.

The National Vietnam War Museum includes the first monument in the state of Florida dedicated to fallen Vietnam War Veterans, with 167 names of men and women from Orange County, Florida. Other static displays consist of a U. S. Navy Patrol Boat River (PBR), also known as “River Rat”, a Douglas A-4B Sky Hawk aircraft that is currently on loan from the National Museum of Naval Aviation, Pensacola, Florida, and a Bell UH-1 (Huey) Dustoff helicopter. The existing Museum Center showcases numerous artifacts from the Vietnam War era, including a room-size, to scale, hand-made firebase re-creation that took approximately eleven years to complete.