The National Rifle Association (NRA) opened a museum at a Missouri Bass Pro Shops store to showcase almost 1,000 historical firearms. The collection includes weapons used by John Wayne and French Emperor Napoleon.
The NRA National Sporting Arms Museum is a mecca to those who collect guns, complete with subtle reminders of the group’s campaign for the right to own guns.
A massive Bass Pro Shops store in Springfield, Missouri, is the home to the firearms museum, where admission is free, reports Reuters. It is comprised of 7,500-square-feet of space including dioramas and displays that were a decade in the making.
In an online video promoting the new museum, director Jim Supica commented that all gun people “are going to love this place.” He added that the new space is “one of the premier firearms museums in the world.”
KY3 notes that the museum has already seen several visitors, including a couple that traveled almost four hours to see the impressive display.
Along with Napoleon and John Wayne, other notable firearms were owned by three US presidents, five congressional medal of honor recipients and even the crown heads of Europe. The NRA museum in Missouri is the second in the country, and museum directors believe the location is ideal.
Missouri is a traditionally conservative state where, as Supica explained, people “are interested in firearms, hunting, and conservation.” He also called Missourians the group’s “core people.”
he NRA museum’s opening comes as the United States remains divided over guns. In light of several shootings last year, including an elementary school massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, the gun debate has been at the heart of many legislative sessions around the country.
While gun control bills were struck down by the US Congress, several states, including Connecticut and Colorado, have passed restrictive laws on guns. But the new NRA museum bears reminders of the group’s mission — protecting the 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution.
Would you like to visit the NRA’s new museum in Missouri?
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