“Our mission is to tell the stories of our State’s service members through interpretive displays of artefacts, pictures, and written and oral histories. Michigan currently has two aviation museums and a museum dedicated to Medal of Honour Recipients and Astronauts, but nothing for the average service member who sacrificed and endured so much for our freedoms. We will be that institution.”
In May of 1861, just after the shelling of Fort Sumter, President Abraham Lincoln called for troops to protect Washington D.C. situated between the border and arguably pro-southern state of Maryland, and Virginia. When the first troops arrived President Lincoln was heard to exclaim “Thank God for Michigan!” For four more bloody years our troops would fight to preserve the union, even capturing confederate President Jefferson Davis. That story and many more are why we have created Michigan’s Military Heritage Museum.
From the earliest settlements at Sault Ste. Marie and Detroit, our state was garrisoned by troops from France, England, and even Spain. Forts were built, ships sailed the Great Lakes, and battles were fought. Later on, the call to preserve the union was answered, then General Custer, with roots in Monroe, set off to fight in the Indian Wars. The Michigan National Guard was called upon to serve in the Spanish-American War, then more Forts as WWI-WWII approached. We became the “arsenal of democracy” producing more than 1/3 of all war material in WWII. This was followed by Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, Desert Storm, OEF/OIF, and throughout, the Cold War.
Our mission is to tell the stories of our State’s service members through interpretive displays of artifacts, pictures, and written and oral histories. Michigan currently has two aviation museums and a museum dedicated to Medal of Honor Recipients and Astronauts, but nothing for the average service member who sacrificed and endured so much for our freedoms. We will be that institution.
We chose Grass Lake as it housed more than 1000 German prisoners in WWII at Camp Waterloo. It is centrally located on the I-94 Chicago-Detroit corridor which in and of itself began as a military highway connecting Willow Run with Detroit in WWII. Michigan, as one of the new world’s oldest settlements, has a vast history, the stories are extraordinary, and sacrifices are innumerable. Please take time to visit and support this effort so that those deeds will not be forgotten.
On November 4, 2016, our new museum was opened with a community preview. We now are open for visitors weekly on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday from 11:00 to 5:00 and on Sunday from 12:00 to 4:00.
During 2018, the museum was the headquarters for Michigan’s World War 1 Centennial. During 2019 & 2020 we participated in the 75th Anniversary of the end of World War 2.
During the last half of 2021, we purchased our new location ( at 311 N. Wisner Street, Jackson, MI 49202) and have enhanced many displays plus added new ones! We look forward to welcoming you!
Michigan’s Military Heritage Museum Board Of Directors
Earned a B.S. degree from Spring Arbor University and a M.A. degree from the American Military University. He served 23 years in the military, is a noted author and belongs to several veterans organizations.
Kevin Gerych-Vice Chair
Kevin attended Lake Superior State University. He served as a staff writer for the Washtenaw Voice Newspaper while attending Washtenaw Community College. He has been involved with living history groups for several years and manages the social media for Michigan’s Military Heritage Museum. Kevin resides in Sault Ste Marie Michigan where he researches the military and CCC involvement in the Upper Peninsula.
Earned a B.S. degree from Michigan State University. Has over 20 years experience in sales and marketing. Served as Chair, Michigan’s World War 1 Centennial Commission, served as Chair, Michigan’s 75th Anniversary of the End of World War 2, Home Front Victory Celebration. Member of the Yankee Air Museum P.R. Committee-Google Grant Manager and a Toastmasters Speech Champion.
Belinda currently works at the Henry Ford Museum in the costume department. She has twenty plus years experience as a period costume and textile consultant. She is involved with numerous living history organizations and the Daughters of the American Revolution. She currently serves as the secretary for the museum.
Earned a BS degree in ornamental horticulture, University of Illinois. Long time student and collector of artillery & military vehicles- 1845-1945; Author of “Arming the Suckers” 1989. Award winning display presentations at numerous antique arms and military exhibits and a Distinguished Fellow of the Company of Military Historians.
Teresa Gerych – Trustee
Has an interest in lighthouse history as well as Michigan history in general. Teresa has served as an Army Wife and VA Caregiver. She joins the Board as a signatory for the bank accounts and as a Trustee.
Served 20 years as an officer in both the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy, retiring as a Navy Commander. He is a former Naval Aviator and career pilot who owns and operates Brooklyn Shamrock Airport, located in Brooklyn, Michigan. He has a Master’s degree in Aviation Operations from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Craig is currently employed with the Michigan Department of Transportation as an Airport Inspector.
William “Bill” White-Trustee
Bill is a lifelong Jackson County resident and currently a Real Estate broker for Howard Hanna Real Estate Services.