Oorlogsmuseum Overloon 2005
The Oorlogsmuseum Overloon (War museum Overloon) is situated in a forest area were the German 107th Panzer Brigade fought a fierce battle, involving Panther tanks, against the US 7th Armoured Division and British 3rd Infantry Division and 11th Armoured Division. Eventually the Allies prevailed after heavy losses on both sides. On the battlefield itself many vehicles, tanks and equipment was left behind and that’s where the museum was founded. (click on the banner below for the museum website:)
Since 2010 the Overloon museum started an all German vehicles event: Militracks. During this event many vehicles of ww2 German origin would meet (panzers, halftracks, kubelwagens etc.) during the weekend. Every year some special panzers joined; there have been Sturmgeschutzen, Hetzers, a Panther and even the Saumur Konigstiger.These were all active vehicles driving around in the woods surrounding the museum, most would be possible to drive along for a (small) fee. See my 'Events' chapter for my Militracks photo reports. (click on the banner below for the museum militracks event page:)
| have been multiple times (among these 2005, 2010, 2019) at the Dutch War museum Overloon; in the beginning most of the tank collection was outside in the forrest and kids would play on them (including me as a child - back in the 80's). Later on the tanks were restored and placed inside, protected as they should have been. Although I've been to Overloon for the first time around the 80's, I managed to photograph some of this old setting/ situation in 2005: The tanks and equipment outside had a nice setting within the woods - but the weather and nature had a large influence; looking more closely many tanks were grown with small plants and moss - and had quite some rust spots.
Compared to later photographs it can clearly be seen that all equipment and vehicles are without any fences. You could walk around all tanks and make perfect photographs - between all vehicles were large gaps and the museum looked very spacious (due to the low amount of vehicles while many were standing outside).
In 2010 I went to the first ever held Militracks event and of course I paid a (very small) visit to the museum. Some tanks were restored and the collection was slightly expanded. Some fences appeared.
2019 was a much different year - this time I did not forget to make some extra museum photographs! The collection had quite substantially expanded since 2005. As can be seen by the photographs: especially the huge BARC amphibian transporter (brought over together with several other equipment from an other collection) is an unique vehicle. Many other tanks and vehicles had some good restoration with new paint jobs. The museum had a more modern look with well preserved items.
In 2022 I paid another visit to the museum. Having bought tickets for the 2020 Militracks event this was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Militracks event was on hold and 14.05.2022 it was held for the first time again. The museum was once again upgraded and had an even more modern ambiance. The collection was also expanded which made many vehicles standing closely together. A large part of the equipment had a different position compared to 2019.