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“Excellent for a "Gun Person", Very Good History for the Others”

Springfield Armory National Historic Site
Ranked #4 of 42 things to do in Springfield
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: This Armory, which manufactured and tested firearms for the U.S. military from 1794 to 1968, houses the country's largest collection of small weapons. While the first floor is free, there's a fee for the second floor, which displays rare weapons and the largest collection of Confederate weapons anywhere.
Reviewed July 17, 2013

This museum would be of the most interest to someone who knows something about the history of firearms and is interested in US and other Military Firearms throughout the recent centuries. If you are not a 'gun person' it is interesting from a historical viewpoint and the development of technology - however, I must caution that you should look at the website before you go if firearms and the history thereof is not your primary interest. That being said there is an informative 20 minute video on the history of the museum and a wealth of displays. The weapons displays (as opposed to the technology displays) are the most extensive parts of the museum, clear and well-displayed in chronological order. You will be able to walk through the development of firerams in general and then through the development of US small arms, with some material from other countries. Examples of the really rare pieces that are on display include the following: M1 Garand #1 and #81, the latter is the first one that was made solely from machined parts (no hand fitting), as well as the last one made in 1957, with various prototypes and developmental models starting with Garand's patent protoype from the 1920s; Japanese copy of the M1 Garand (known as both Type 4 and Type 5 rifle, I don't know why it has both designations); one of only about 250 made; one of the 20 post-war all-stamped "Colt" 45 automatics (see WHB Smith's Book of Pistols and Revolvers); Eisenhower's Presidential Presentation M14 #1 (which had flaws so he was given #2); several early Armalites; a couple of the SPIW prototypes; an FG42; a Liberator (chromed), etc. For Civil War arms buffs they have several display cases of different Union and Confederate carbines and rifles, including 'coffee grinder' Spencers and Maynard tape-primer rifled muskets.

1  Thank BaysideConnecticut
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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163 - 167 of 213 reviews

Reviewed July 7, 2013 via mobile

An interesting stop showing the history of the armory.

The museum is contained on one floor of one of the buildings, and has some simple activities to entertain children while you are able to walk around the exhibits

1  Thank phlege
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 6, 2013

Spent several hours at the Armory. A place my husband has been wanting to go to for years. We were not disappointed. Displays were very well done with just enough info to read but not feel overwhelmed.

Thank Cheryl H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 18, 2013

This museum was poorly marked and hard to find. Despite this, we really enjoyed it. The rangers were helpful. The intro film interesting, the exhibits cool. Even if you are not a gun nut, this is fascinating from a historical perspective, we had an hour and could have filled two. They have guns and written information and several videos on the exhibits.

Thank Lisa M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 13, 2013

Unless you’re trying to get all your National Park stamps or a real gun person, I wouldn’t drive too fair out of my way. The site is basically a moderate sized museum housed in one of the old armory buildings.

There is an interesting collection of guns from the time of the revolution up until fairly current. They say they only display about 10 percent of it.

Some displays about the manufacturing and research that was done there are the years.

Based on the history and importance of the site in American history and gun making, I expected more.

Thank msfromgptx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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