Anyone wanting to learn more about Camp Forrest and local history can make a stop at South Jackson Civic Center this Saturday to do so.

This weekend, to coincide with the Tullahoma Fine Arts Center’s September exhibit “Enemy, Frenemy, Friend: WWII TN POW & Civilian Internee Perspectives,” the Floyd and Margaret Mitchell Museum at South Jackson Civic Center will be open from 1:30 to 3 p.m. to display its Camp Forrest memorabilia as well as other pieces from Tullahoma’s history. Admission to the museum is free for all.

Across the street at the art center, the TFAC exhibit curator Dr. Elizabeth Taylor will have a meet and greet from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., where she will answer questions about Camp Forrest. Taylor has written two books on Camp Forrest: “Images of America: Camp Forrest,” and “Voices of Camp Forrest in World War II.”

The “Enemy, Frenemy, Friend: WWII TN POW & Civilian Internee Perspectives” exhibit features both artwork and artifacts from Camp Forrest. The exhibit opened Saturday, Sept. 4, and will run through Oct. 2. Some of the artifacts featured include translation books, foreign currency and leaflets of surrender that were dropped on troops during World War II.

South Jackson Civic Center is located at 404 S. Jackson St. and business hours are Tuesday from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Wednesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and closed on Saturday through Monday. For more information visit southjackson.org or call 455-5321.

 

About Camp Forrest

 

Camp Forrest was a World War II induction, training and POW facility located on approximately 80,000 acres outside of Tullahoma.  The installation was a self-sustaining city where over 70,000 soldiers were stationed and approximately 12,000 civilians were employed throughout World War II. In 1942, the camp transitioned to an enemy alien internment camp and was one of the first civilian internment camps in the United States. By the middle of 1943, it transitioned into a POW camp and housed primarily German and Italian prisoners.  During peak operation, Camp Forrest housed an average of 20,480 POWs.  After the war ended, the base was decommissioned and dis-mantled. By 1951, the base was recommissioned and expanded into the U.S. Air Force Arnold Engineering Development Complex.