History of West Point

  • West Point founded

    West Point is occupied and fortified by American troops.
  • First collections

    With the disbanding of the Continental Army, its materials are given to West Point for storage, and tourists begin to visit and see them.
  • Flags and trophies on display

    Congress orders that flags and trophies be "preserved and displayed" in a public place.
  • Collections expanded

    The Academy's Board of Visitors recommends that artillery models, drawings, and paintings begin to be displayed.
  • Captured flags displayed

    Flags captured during the Mexican War are displayed at West Point, followed three years later by artillery trophies from the same war.
  • Museum founded

    The Academy's Board of Visitors appropriates $5,000 for a so-called "museum of artillery".
  • Museum opens

    The West Point Museum opens under the name Ordnance Museum.
  • Displays moved to Trophy Point

    Over the next two years, historic artillery pieces are moved to the Trophy Point area of West Point, where they remain on display to this day.
  • Museum collections in storage

    The museum collections are placed in storage while a new Academy Building is constructed.
  • New galleries open

    The Ordnance Museum reopens in the new Academy Building.
  • First catalog published

    A catalog of the museum's collections is published for the first time, and made available to visitors.
  • Collections on the move (again)

    The museum moves to new facilities, to provide better public access and larger display space.
  • Updated catalog published

    The museum publishes an updated catalog of its collections.
  • Museum renamed

    The museum changes its name from the Ordnance Museum to the United States Military Academy Museum.
  • Revised catalog published

    The museum's first civilian curator, Lloyd J. Kirkland, publishes a revised version of the museum's catalog.
  • Museum renamed (again)

    The museum changes its name from the United States Military Academy Museum to the West Point Museum.
  • First civilian director hired

    Frederick P. Todd is appointed director of the West Point Museum, the first civilian to hold that post.
  • Collections on the move (again)

    The museum moves into another new space, Thayer Hall, that offers twice as much room and more modern displays.
  • Guide to the Collections published

    The Academy's Association of Graduates publishes The West Point Museum: A Guide to the Collections.
  • New home for the museum acquired

    The former Ladycliff College is acquired to house the museum, which temporarily closes during its relocation, re-opening a year later.
  • USMA Bicentennial celebrated

    The West Point Museum opens a major exhibit of memorabilia to commemorate the Academy's Bicentennial.
  • Sesquicentennial celebrated

    The museum celebrates its Sesquicentennial with an exhibition chronicling its historical evolution.
  • New and improved website created

    A group of museum studies graduate students from Johns Hopkins University creates a new and improved educational website for the West Point Museum.