World War II Home Front Museum Opens in Coastal Georgia

Staff Report From Georgia CEO

Monday, January 14th, 2019

The new World War II Home Front Museum on St. Simons Island brings to life Coastal Georgia's extraordinary contributions during World War II and recounts how this quiet coastal region was transformed when the United States went to war. Galleries of immersive exhibits recreate iconic home front scenes and interactive experiences allow visitors to try their hand at plane spotting, directing fighter pilot squadrons using radar technology, and building and joining the crew of a Liberty ship.

Developed by Coastal Georgia Historical Society and designed by Gallagher & Associates, lead exhibit designer at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, the Home Front Museum details this region's multifaceted role during the war. The Coastal Georgia home front story reflects the experience of many Americans during World War II - civil defense activities such as blackouts, food rationing and buying war bonds, and sending sons and daughters off to join the nation's military. This area was unique because it was the location of three critical wartime facilities: an airship base, a radar training school, and a Liberty shipyard.

"Many home front stories focus on how industry changed in the context of the war. The Coastal Georgia story is representative of that, but it also goes beyond that basic history," said Mimi Rogers, Curator of the Coastal Georgia Historical Society. "The area remained on the front lines of America's home front defense throughout the war, with a dedicated volunteer civilian corps, flying U-boat reconnaissance, spotting enemy airplanes, and engaging in other activities to protect our coast. That's a story that is often forgotten. I think it's important that those memories and stories be channeled into an experience that shows young people not only how the U.S. coastlines were threatened, but also how a community came together for national defense."