Day Eight: TANKLAND
We drove out to visit some more family in sunny Rancho Cucamonga today, which is just a fun thing to say, and Gretchen was much pleased to see and somewhat harass a pair of large labradors. From there, the 210 and the 57/60 led us past South El Monte and........TANKLAND!
The American Military Museum (as far as I can tell that is its official name, generic though it may be) is a wunderland for those few of us geeky enough to seek out armoured vehicle museums in their travels. As a child I wanted our family to head east to visit the US Army Ordnance Museum in at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds. But this is a good first step.
I was on, if not Cloud Nine, then one of the Clouds at least above level Four, conservatively speaking.
The family very sportingly came with. Gretchen was particularly fascinated with the quality and grading of the rocks, gravel, and dirt with which the outdoor museum was lavishly furnished.
Nice little amphibious armoured car whose name escapes me. Lou? Henrik?
A trio of Shermans, the workhorse of Patton's Third Army and the most iconic American tank of WWII.
The miscellaneous ordnance section...bombs, missiles, rocket launchers, torpedoes, and marine mines.
The landing craft and marine section, with the family. Gretchen taking another sample of the absolute exquisite El Monte dirt!
Patton tanks, an M48 and some later models.
The working quarters of a very large self-propelled howitzer piece.
...and the rest of the same.
A Bofors emplacement! Probably from a scrapped battleship or similar vessel, definately a naval emplacement from a ship likely of the WWII era. Quad 40mm autocannons for anti-aircraft.
I don't recall the details on this similar anti-aircraft naval emplacement but it looks like twin 30mm autocannons, and I love the fact that its enclosed and has windshield wipers on the front. I wonder if the replacement blades for the wipers are a standard size they can get at an automotive shop. More likely they are contract made for $300 each!
Pretty substantive fixed gun nestled into the corner of a museum.
The Priests lined up.
And a northward pointing big fella waiting to shell El Monte Proper, apparently.
Bren Carrier and my daughter. A bit smaller and it be perfect size for her!
An old 30's era "Combat Car" and a Chi-Ha mockup.
M50 Ontos, without its characteristic array of recoilless rifle tubes.
The M5 Stuart, a capable American light tank that served in WWII, and probably beyond.
M551 Sheridan, an interesting vehicle with a missile launching tube, essentially, for a main gun, and mostly aluminum armour for lighter weight, designed to be airdropped, seeing some service in Viet Nam.
Daughter satisfied with face-applicated soil samples.
Pak36, a German anti-tank gun in 37mm. Small little unit, probably easily transported, though outclassed by heavier, later tanks.
Motorcycle and a row of Willys jeeps and other trucks.
What EVERYONE needs! A MORTAR SHED!
Long suffering fam in front of a nice, I think British, armoured car on the way out.