At the Varnum Memorial Armory Museum, we now have the Springfield rifle carried by African American, Isaac J. Winters, of Company F 43rd U.S. Colored Troops during the American Civil War. He fought heroically in — and survived despite being wounded — some of the War’s most horrific combat.
An Austrian Count and World War I ace, Antoine Gazda, moved to Rhode Island and lived in the Biltmore Hotel (Providence, RI) for all of World War II, where he was guarded 24 hours a day in secret as he developed an aircraft version of his 20mm cannon. This shell casing at the Varnum Memorial Amory Museum was the first round fired from his prototype.
Here’s a special treat! At the Varnum Memorial Armory Museum, we have a photo album that belonged to a member of the 76th Division Artillery in World War II.
Have you seen the Varnum House Museum’s period herb garden? This fantastic outdoor exhibit features 18th century flowers, plants, and herbs that were used for cooking, medicine, and cleaning, as well as dyes and paints. We also have a gorgeous rose garden! Each plant is labeled to let you know exactly how each herb was […]
This ancient Fowler was purportedly carried by Thomas Gould of North Kingstown as he patrolled the beaches of Quidnesset watching for Tory and British ships during the American Revolutionary War. It is a conglomeration of early European parts and some crude American-made parts. This old flintlock birding gun dates from the late 1600s to early […]
This is East Greenwich resident Thomas W. Chace’s certificate of appreciation for his service in the United Train of Artillery militia as he took command of the 4th Brigade of the Rhode Island Militia in September 1872. The intricacy and workmanship is amazing! This item is on display at the Varnum Memorial Armory Museum.
Amazingly, a second tintype of Lyman Aylesworth (1st Rhode Island Cavalry in the US Civil War) has been found; this time on horseback in the field with his saber drawn. This is a fantastic image even without the ID of Aylesworth. The frame is identical to the other tintype in our possession. A dealer had […]
Until the 19th century was well along, handguns were limited to single-shot weapons. In 1836, a 22-year old Hartford, Connecticut man, Samuel Colt, came up with a concept for controlled rotation of a firearm that would allow multiple rounds to be fired without reloading. Colt, the son of a textile manufacturer, developed a fascination for […]
Here’s another kind donation to the historic military book collection at the Varnum Memorial Armory Museum. This is an 1899 first edition of Harpers Weekly “Pictorial History of the Spanish American War”. The artwork is wonderful and the images are unique and interesting. Thank you, Grant Brandon!
Shawn Pease brought this wonderful World War I-era American flag to us. According to his grandfather (who served in the 101st Infantry of the famed “Yankee” Division), the flag “flew in France during the War”. Note the period repairs and patches including two with vintage silk. Shawn and I are figuring out a plan to […]