Rich in history and landmarks, Onslow County’s story is shared through memorials, highway markers and museums. At Lejeune Memorial Gardens near downtown Jacksonville, a peaceful hush cloaks the paved walkways and monuments tucked into a grove of trees overlooking a large fountain. When a bomb blast shook a Marine Corps barracks in Beirut in 1983, the news that 273 Marines, sailors and soldiers had died in an act of terrorism shook the nation and touched the lives of many families and friends living in Onslow.
The Beirut Memorial and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial both pay tribute to the area’s Marine Corps heritage and sacrifice. The first African-American Marines who trained during segregation and served in World War II are recognized at the Montford Point Marines Museum, one of the stops on the Jacksonville-Onslow African-American Heritage Trail. The museum sustained damage during Hurricane Florence is temporarily closed as repairs are completed.