Veterans are in the spotlight this month at the Wise County Heritage Museum in Decatur.
The “Patriotic Salute to our Veterans” special exhibit continues through the month of November.
Museum employee Hannah Rainey explained the museum is highlighting artifacts in its collection that tell the story of veterans and war time experiences.
The exhibit culminates with a special evening Saturday, Nov. 19, when the museum will be open to the public 7 to 8:30 p.m. for a special viewing.
“We are going to have docents all over the place telling visitors about each and every artifact and why it was important in war time,” Rainey said of the Nov. 19 event.
The museum is also open 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Saturday and includes a special scavenger hunt that helps tell the stories of local veterans.
The highlight is the Lost Battalion Room, which serves as a tribute to local soldiers who were captured by Japanese soldiers as prisoners of war in the Dutch East Indies during World War II. They were held in forced labor camps for three-and-a-half years.
The exhibit will also highlight veterans of wars from World War I forward.
In addition to actual items that might be seen on the battlefield, such as uniforms, steam trunks, mess kits, gun repair kits and diaries, other areas of war-time life will also be highlighted, such as women’s efforts at home.
The museum is selling 30 raffle tickets each for two paintings as part of the special exhibition. Raffle tickets are $50 each and can be purchased at the museum gift shop.
The two paintings by local artists Marie James and Linda Cowell are on display at First Financial Bank, which is sponsoring the special exhibition.
The drawing will be held at the Nov. 19 evening event.
Proceeds from the event will benefit the museum.