03/04/2013 (press release: JaturontThan) // Jaturont Thanapura
As mentioned before, the Royal Thai Army is more than just a fighting force. Aside from our several fighting, peace keeping, and medical divisions, we also have a museum. The Royal Thai Army Museum was built in order to preserve the history of Thailand’s armaments, our leaders, our conflicts, and more. An explanation of the museums Is below.
A Brief History
The Royal Thai Army Museum was established in 1882 under the decree of King Rama V. Originally, the museum was located on the third floor of the Defense Ministry under the name “The Military Museum of Defense.” As the military grew and needed more space for its arsenal and personnel requirements, the Defense Ministry relocated the museum’s historical military collections, including not only weapons and equipment but a handful of memorabilia to the National Museum. All military memorabilia was held in the National museum until the Chulachomklao royal Military Academy was re-branded as the Royal Thai Army Headquarters. The Administration and Ordinance buildings were kept intact, then recommissioned as the new site for the Army Museum. They thought the move fitting, seeing as how those buildings had been built under the reign of Rama V. The Army Museum was re-opened in June of 1996 to commemorate the golden jubilee of the king’s accession under the name ‘The Royal Thai Army Museum in Honor of His Majesty the King.”
The museum’s eight exhibit halls showcase a variety of facets of the Royal Army, including a portrait gallery of our notable generals, the evolution of our uniforms, and our involvement in different conflicts. Those eight exhibit halls are divided into three floors:
1st Floor: Military History Model Room: The Royal Thai Army’s history is showcased through a series of models of our important events as well as the evolution of our ancient and modern weapons.
1st Floor: Weapons: Armaments used from as early as the Rattanakosin period up to our involvement in the Vietnam War are showcased here.
2nd Floor: Flags and equipment: Service medals, battle flags, and various different regalia are displayed here.
3rd Floor: Uniforms and Insignia: Uniforms dating back to the Sukhothai period up until the present day, as well as the insignia, medals, and other regalia are displayed here.
There is also a lecture hall and a Barami Pok Klao Room within the facility. Access to the museum is currently available by appointment only, and that in and of itself is technically limited to current and former members of the military. The limits to the museum’s access is, however, hardly prohibitive: due to the duties asked of our male citizens, the vast
majority of Thai families can, if they wish to make an appointment, view the museum’s exhibits.
Other Military Museums
While the Royal Thai Army is the oldest of the branches of the Royal Thai Armed Forces, the Royal Thai Air Force Museum: The Royal Thai Air Force Museum was established in 1952. its present location consists of five buildings that were completed in November of 1968. It officially opened in January of the following year. It currently features a wide array of aircraft, many of which served the Thai people wondrously during the war. The museum also features a great deal of medals and uniforms that stand as testament to the valor of this great institution.
Royal Thai Naval Museum: The Royal Thai Naval Museum was constructed in concordance with the others and has been developed in the same manner. Being that Thailand is a peninsular nation, the strength and history of our naval forces has been essential to our survival. The museum stands as a testament to the essential role it has played in our history.
The long and complicated history of the Royal Armed Forces involves long stories and complicated alliances through both war and peace. That history’s monuments, exemplified in the establishment and maintenance of the Royal Thai Army Museum is essential in keeping that history alive. That history, however checkered it might be with turnovers in parliaments and generals, has at least been constant in its support of the royal familial line. As that familial line
grows, it is our duty as citizens of Thailand o preserve its varied and colorful history.
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