Today is the birthday of the United States Marine Corps. The Marine Corps Museum (depicted above) opens today in Quantico — “a monument to honor, courage and commitment.” Earlier this week Mark Yost previewed the museum in an excellent column (subscribers only) for the Wall Street Journal. Yost wrote:
[I]t’s hard to imagine that one collection could adequately capture and convey the 231-year history of what’s arguably America’s most revered armed force. But thanks to the wonderful design and interactive presentation of just 1,000 of the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation’s 60,000 historical pieces, this $60 million museum, funded almost entirely by private donations, which officially opens Friday, has done that and more.
The first thing you notice is the exterior design. Its silhouette is purposely reminiscent of the flag-raising at Iwo Jima. A 210-foot mast, clearly visible for several miles up and down Interstate 95, represents the flag pole, and the building is shaped like the huddled men at the base. “Overlay the Joe Rosenthal photo with the building and you say ‘Wow,'” said its architect, Curtis Worth Fentress.
What’s inside is equally impressive.
Visitors enter through a large atrium that features Marine Corps aircraft suspended in midair and a granite fa