Museum Opens MacMillan Painting Exhibit on Veteran’s Day

Posted November 8, 2021 at 9:10 am     Category: NewsMuseum

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C. — Cape Fear Museum of History and Science announces the opening of MacMillan: Artist as Soldier, a new exhibition featuring over 50 paintings and illustrations. The exhibit opens on Veteran’s Day, November 11, 2021, and will be on view through March 20, 2022.

Wilmington-born Henry Jay MacMillan (1908-1991) was an artist-turned-soldier who served with the 62nd Engineer Topographic Company during World War II. MacMillan painted scenes of war-torn Europe, the activities of the Army, hedgerows in Normandy and more. This exhibit offers a fascinating glimpse into a local artist’s experience and life as a soldier during World War II. After the war, MacMillan compiled a scrapbook with photographs of his military paintings and the captions he wrote are included with the artwork in the exhibit.

Visitors are invited to join the Museum to celebrate the opening of MacMillan: Artist as Soldier. Several family-friendly activities will take place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Veteran’s Day, November 11:

  • Paint a watercolor postcard in the style of Henry MacMillan and write a message to a veteran
  • Explore symbolism in flags and design one of your own
  • Try to construct a bridge like those seen in MacMillan’s paintings
  • View World War II artifacts from the Museum’s collection that are not on view as part of the exhibition

“We are excited to share this historic record of the War through paintings,” stated curator Heather Yenco. “A selection of MacMillan’s work was previously on view in 2014 but never have we been able to showcase the depth of his watercolors and sketches documenting wartime destruction, battlefield landscapes and everyday military life.”

The Museum will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Veteran’s Day. We celebrate and honor men and women who have served in the U.S. armed forces and will also provide free admission to veterans on Thursday, November 11, 2021.

Cape Fear Museum of History and Science, a Smithsonian Affiliate, is located at 814 Market Street and is open Tuesday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 1 to 5 p.m. Standard admission prices are $8 for adults; $7 for seniors, students and military with valid ID; $5 for children 6-17; and free for children 5 and under and for museum members. New Hanover County residents’ free day is the first Sunday of each month. Cape Fear Museum is also a proud partner of Museums for All and offers free admission to SNAP benefit recipients when they present an EBT card. More information:

News Release Contact: Barbi Baker,, 910-798-4367

814 Market Street • Wilmington, NC 28401 • Phone 910-798-4370 • Fax 910-798-4382
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