Explains Role of New Jersey’s 102nd Cavalry in World War II
SEA GIRT, N.J. – Beginning June 6, the National Guard Militia Museum of New Jersey (NGMMNJ) will open an exhibit commemorating the seventieth anniversary of D-Day and the New Jersey National Guard role in the liberation of Europe during World War II. “Seventy Years On: New Jersey’s 102nd Cavalry in World War II,” presents a chronological history of the 102nd Cavalry Group’s progress from the beaches of Normandy to the war’s end.
Using images, artifacts, historic weapons, uniforms, and primary source documents, the exhibit chronicles the 102nd’s arrival at Normandy, the critical role it played in overcoming German defenses in Northern France, and its participation in the Battle of the Bulge and other important engagements. Notably, the exhibit explains how New Jersey National Guardsmen earned the distinction of being the first Americans to enter occupied Paris.
“Soldiers of today’s New Jersey Army National Guard can trace our lineage back to the units who fought their way across Europe,” said Capt. Vincent Solomeno, museum curator and command historian. “The troopers of the 102nd Cavalry battled from D-Day to the German surrender. The intent of our exhibit is to present their heroic story and honor the sacrifices of those who served.”
In addition, the exhibit highlights the experience of New Jerseyans on the home front and discusses the Garden State’s role in manufacturing the material necessary for the war effort. It also discusses the important role played by women who volunteered in the Armed Forces and served as civilian war workers.
“Seventy Years On: New Jersey’s 102nd Cavalry in World War II,” opens June 6 and runs through October at the National Guard Militia Museum in Sea Girt. The museum is open seven days a week from 10:00AM – 3:00PM. Admission is free. For more information, please visit the NGMMNJ website at http://www.state.nj.us/military/museum/ or call (732) 974-5966.