little-known historical site full of large and small treasures sits
on the outskirts of town on the Logan County Airport property. The
Heritage In Flight Museum building itself is a part of history. It
is a remnant of Camp Ellis, located west of Havana, which was the
largest military training and prisoner-of-war camp in the United
States during World War II. After the war the camp was closed and
the buildings were sold. Logan County Airport is fortunate to have
one of the few remaining structures from Camp Ellis.
historic items are found outside at the airport, including the
rotating beacon, the green-and-white light that identifies the
airport location to pilots flying at night. Before being moved to
Logan County Airport, it was part of the lighted airway system that
the airmail pilots in the 1920s used to navigate at night. The one
that now resides here was originally located between Lincoln and
Atlanta and provided a bright signal for Charles Lindbergh when he
flew the airmail route between St. Louis and Chicago.
outside you can also view a number of aircraft that are on display
from various time periods.
to the inside, you find that the Heritage In Flight Museum is filled
with items of aviation history from the military and civilian
branches of flying and from the earliest days of open-cockpit
biplanes to the latest jets. Veterans who reside in Logan County
have donated much of what the museum has. Families from the
community have donated items that belonged to our war heroes,
revealing special sentiments, symbolism and forgotten practices that
held a community together in war times. Other items offer a look at
early technology such as the airplane and ship radios. Of the
thousands of items in the museum, each can be said to teach us
something about our past. Visitors can relive history through the
numerous displays, mostly grouped in wartime periods, and gain a
strong sense of patriotism while studying military displays
throughout the building.
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A guided tour is
recommended to get the most from these displays. The volunteers are
both knowledgeable and passionate about their subject matter and
will bring to light little-known nuances that make the displays
The museum is always
interested in adding items of aviation history. Its greatest need,
however, is for more volunteers to help in the guardianship of this
important gateway to Lincoln and Logan County.
The museum requires lots of
care and maintenance. Members are always looking for interested
people of all ages to help care for it, share their interests and
preserve a bit of aviation history.
Heritage In Flight Museum is operated by an all-volunteer, nonprofit
organization: Heritage In Flight, Inc. You are invited to come meet
the members and sit in on their meetings anytime. Meetings take
place at 1 p.m. the first Saturday of each month in the terminal
The museum is a great
resource to educate our youth about our aeronautical and military
past and shares the wealth of military traditions from a community
and national perspective. Schools, youth groups and families are
Heritage In Flight Museum
1351 Airport Road, Lincoln
Winter hours: Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.
Summer hours (2004): Wednesday through
Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.
Call 217-732-3333 and leave a message to arrange other times and
tours. School and youth groups are especially welcome.