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Armed Forces History Museum

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Armed Forces History Museum

The Armed Forces History Museum in Largo features an extensive display of ordnance.

Photo by LEE CLARK ZUMPE

Address:

2050 34th Way N., Largo, FL 33771

Phone:

727-539-8371

Hours:

Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. The museum is closed on Mondays, New Year’s Day, Easter, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

Tickets:

  • Adults - $17.95
  • Children 4 to 12 - $12.95
  • Children 3 and younger – Free
  • Active & Retired Military w/Military ID - FREE (Active-White CAC; Retired-DDForm2RET, Blue Color) - OR – (Reserve Retired-DDForm2RES, Red Color)
  • Veterans w/VA ID Card - $14.95
  • AAA Rate - $15.25

Directions:

    From I-275 Southbound:
  • Take Exit 31 onto Ulmerton Road and continue west for about 6.6 miles
  • Turn right on 34th Way N. and continue north until reaching the cul de sac
  • The entrance to the museum will be found at the end of the street
    From I-275 Northbound:
  • Merge onto FL-686W at Exit 30, heading toward Largo and Clearwater
  • Continue north to the merge ramp to Ulmerton Road
  • Travel west on Ulmerton Road for about 5 miles
  • Turn right on 34th Way N. and continue north until reaching the cul de sac
  • The entrance to the museum will be found at the end of the street

Armed Forces History Museum Preserves History:

Tucked away at the end of a winding road in the heart of Largo’s industrial neighborhood is one of the largest, non-government-funded military museums in Florida. Founded by John J. Piazza Sr., a local businessman and history buff, the Armed Forces History Museum began its life as a traveling collection operating out of a large mobile unit housing 16 displays. As Piazza continued to acquire military memorabilia, it became evident that a permanent site would be required.

The museum opened in August 2008 with a grand opening ceremony that featured area radio personality Jack Harris as emcee, posting of colors by an honor guard, presentation of the flag by Congressman C.W. Bill Young, and a ribbon-cutting with Largo Mayor Patricia Gerard.

Mission

The museum, a not-for-profit charitable foundation, is committed to preserving military history and to educating current and future generations as to the sacrifices made by those who have sought to safeguard freedom.

Exhibits

The museum houses unique and realistic displays depicting scenes from World War I, World War II, D-Day Landings, the attack on Pearl Harbor and the Korean and Vietnam eras. Organized within the museum’s 35,000-square-foot facility, visitors will find authentic artifacts and equipment dating from the early 20th century through the modern day. Many of the museum’s exhibits are enhanced with audio and visual effects including smoke simulators and methodically crafted backdrops which intensify the experience and give the visitor a real sense of living history.

In the World War I display, guests walk through a muddy European trench as a battle rages. Genuine period artifacts have been employed to make this journey back through time more convincing.

Among the numerous vehicles on display are a DUKW amphibian landing craft, a Sherman tank and a Ford XM151 experimental utility truck.

The museum’s collection also includes German Third Reich artifacts including uniforms, medals and other memorabilia. The museum boasts the only known full service uniform of Saddam Hussein in the United States. Additional displays and presentations are in development, including an exhibit representing Desert Storm, Afghanistan and Enduring Freedom.

Memorial Walk

The museum has set aside a landscaped area for a memorial walk and garden. Those wishing to memorialize loved ones may purchase an engraved brick that will be placed in the walk. Two sizes are available, and the cost ranges from $100 to $175.

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