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Are there plans to build a World War II homefront museum in Wilmington?

Ben Steelman

That’s a long-term goal, according to Wilbur D. Jones Jr., co-founder of the World War II Wilmington Home Front Heritage Coalition: “We are, after all, America’s World War II City.”

The coalition acquired 501(c)(3) non-profit status in 2008, as a preliminary step. Any museum opening, however, is years away, Jones said.

In the meantime, a World War II home front exhibit is on display at the Hannah Block Historic USO Building at 120 S. Second St., Wilmington [Map this]. After a major renovation, the building (once known as Wilmington’s Community Arts Center) had a grand re-opening on Independence Day 2008 with a restored lobby area, authentic wall colors and radiators from the 1940s, a number of wall cases with vintage military uniforms and USO artifacts, photo-murals of home front life and a piano played by the late Hannah Block, who was a volunteer coordinator when the USO was open.

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