COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - There’s a lot going on at the National Infantry Museum, including a new portrait gallery that was just unveiled.
The museum is also premiering a new film at their giant screen theater about the history of Fort Benning, which was born in 1918 on the banks of the Chattahoochee River.
“Follow Us: 100 Years of Fort Benning” traces the evolution from the beginning to what it is now - the world’s preeminent place for military training. Museum director Scott Daubert said it’s such a quality movie that’s also an educational tool.
“It’s one-of-a-kind. It’s an amazing thing to do to have a movie made for your installation. We have such a deep history," Daubert said.
He said he knows a lot of locals who have never been on Fort Benning, so what they will see on the big screen is that much more important.
“It’s kind of taking away the veil, saying this is what we do, and really showing the community and people here on post that our bonds with Columbus go back 100 years,” Daubert added.
Other kinds of art are on display at the museum in this new gallery with rotating exhibits of hidden treasures. The first one is paintings by longtime service member and accomplished artist, Al Reid, called “Portraits in Leadership.”
“General Patton, for example, showed a tremendous amount of courage,” Daubert said about the artwork. “There’s a vignette showing you how he did that. Each painting has a different leadership principle to it.”
The portraits also include Generals Dwight D. Eisenhower and Ulysses S. Grant, plus prominent local military leaders like Eugene Ballard, a Columbus native and the first African-American combat pilot.
This gallery is upstairs, just past the signature 100 yards. The director of the National Infantry Museum said these works of art educate the public but also are part of training for young soldiers as they learn from past leaders.
The Portraits in Leadership gallery will be replaced in June by a new exhibit about the 75th anniversary of D-Day. As for the new documentary film, it will also be show on Thursday March 28 at 6 p.m. at the Columbus Museum on Wynnton Road.