National Munitions Company
“Why is there a World War II museum in Eldred?”
This is a common question received by staff at the Eldred WWII Museum. The answer lies in a munitions plant that was operated in the Eldred area during the war. The plant did not start out as an American operation, however. George Roudebush, an American lawyer, with J.W. Whitmore, a Canadian, found the Eldred area to be a suitable location for a munitions plant that would serve British armed forces.
The National Munitions Company began operation in mid 1941, before the United States became actively involved in World War II. Production for American armed forces began after December 7, 1941.
Approximately 1,500 people worked in this facility and once our boys went off to war, 95% of National Munitions Company’s employees were women. During peak production the plant stretched across 1,800 acres with proving grounds in New York state.
Types of munitions assembled at the plant were British 3 inch trench mortars, 2 inch smoke projectiles, incendiary bombs, bomb fuses, and thermite hand grenades. Operations ceased once the war ended and the plant was later dismantled.
Our Mission Statement
- To preserve and interpret the history of World War II.
- To commemorate the contribution of 40 million Americans that supported the 16 million fighting soldiers during the epic struggle to defend freedom and democracy against the forces of greed and aggression.
- To help shape a stronger future for the United States by helping present and future generations understand the lessons of the 20th century.