Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Ditsong National Museum of Military History





I have not been to this museum for several years and I was pleasantly surprised by the changes that I found on a recent visit.

Behind this rather bland facade lies a treasure trove for those who enjoy military history. 

There are several memorials to those who paid the ultimate price in a variety of different conflicts that South Africans were involved in  

If you want to read what Smuts said, you will have to visit the museum. 

The real reason for my visit was to to see this Messerschmitt ME262B-1a/u1 again.

One of only two remaining examples, it has been given a new home out of the ravages of the elements.To me it is probably the "sexiest" aircraft I have ever seen... 

This German BMW motorbike was fully kitted in desert camouflage  

I wonder if this cannon was kept in this condition during conflict? 

War planes have a mystique all of their own 

Spitfires had first aid kits that were on the fuselage, not much use to the pilots while flying 

One of the most iconic nose cones...The Spitfire 

Polished to such a gleaming surface that I can see myself in the barrel 

Sometimes the parts are more interesting than the whole... 

This was the windshield of a Hawker Hurricane... 

No "BABY ON BOARD" sticker for this aircraft.

There is a beauty and symmetry to these tank treads 

I thought that this was big... 

Until I came across this G6-self propelled 155mm gun Howitzer! 

How many rear ends graced this seat? 

Another shiny machine weapon

There is an exhibition honouring the M.O.T.H members.Whether you believe in war or not, it was because of lives sacrificed that we are where we are today.

How many deaths did these barrels cause? 

In the beginning wars were fought up close where edged weapons played a significant role

Then armies decided that up close was too personal and guns came into their own 

Even though they were weapons of death, it did not mean that they had to be plain 


And, when you are tired of looking at weapons of death and destruction(or freedom and liberation) depending on which side you were, there is some trivia to keep visitors entertained.


The poster says it all... 

This store is on the premises, but is run separately from the museum 

This tank helmet caught my attention... 

a plethora of water-bottles filled a cabinet 

And badges festooned a wall.
To find out more about the store, visit www.warstore.co.za or give Alan a call on 0832256729/011 646 9956 

Even though the museum is a resting place for weapons,aircraft and vehicles that caused many thousands of deaths, I found it to be a place of tranquility and peace.I urge parents to take their children to show them the legacy of those who fraught and died for our freedom

Contact details:


DITSONG: National Museum of Military History
22 Erlswold Way, Saxonwold, Johannesburg, 2132

Tel:  +27 (010) 001 3515
Fax: +27 (011) 646 5256
E-mail: milmus@ditsong.org.za
www.ditsong.org.za

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