FORT LEWIS, Wash. – The Fort Lewis museum will close its doors beginning November 16 for more than a year while the building undergoes a complete renovation. This will be the final week for guests to visit the museum, which will remain open for its regular operating hours of noon until 4 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday, although the museum will be closed November 11, in observance of Veterans Day. The museum is expected to reopen in spring, 2011.
The Fort Lewis Museum occupies the former Red Shield Inn, completed in 1919. The inn’s construction was contracted by the Salvation Army in 1918 to house newly-arriving Soldiers and their families at “Camp Lewis.” The building is one of two surviving buildings from the former Greene Park, a recreation area established for Soldiers mobilized or stationed here during World War I (the other surviving building houses
the installation Family Readiness Center). More information about the building’s history can be found at the museum’s website.
This will be the building’s most extensive renovation since its construction was completed in 1919. It was transferred to government ownership on July 1, 1924, and served the needs of Fort Lewis soldiers and family members until 1972. In 1973, it re-opened as the home of the Fort Lewis Military Museum. The museum building was placed on the National Registry of Historic Places in 1979.
When the renovations are completed, the museum will continue as a link to the post’s past and preserve the heritage of Fort Lewis and the Army in the Pacific Northwest.