45th Infantry Museum Reopens After Storm Damage

Wednesday, February 16th 2011, 6:05 pm
By: News 9

Nathan Elliott, News9.com

OKLAHOMA CITY -- The 45th Infantry Division Museum, which houses Oklahoma's historical military artifacts, has reopened after sustaining damage in the February blizzard.

The extreme cold caused a pipe to burst in the museum's fire suppression system, flooding a large part of the building.

The museum's curator, Mike Gonzales, was awakened by a call from the fire department on February 3. He said he spent the next five hours using a wet vacuum to remove the water, until professional restoration services could be reached.

Gonzales said he felt lucky because most of the water ran down the outside of the building.

Only a handful of artifacts were damaged, including an original World War I decoration awarded to soldiers who were wounded in battle. The beautifully adorned document preceded the Purple Heart.

Gonzales said the document and a silk flag for the 180th Infantry Regiment was also damaged in the flood but can be cleaned.

The museum is located at 2145 N.E. 36th Street and is open to the public Tuesday through Sunday.

For hours, visit The 45th Infantry Division Museum website.