An Amazing Couple of Days at Ft. Benning, GA

Recently I was part of a SEARCH project at Ft. Benning, Georgia. The project involved working with the Cultural Resource Management team there to document two buildings. The first building was a concrete bunker way out in the woods built in 1941 and the second a 50+ year old, vacant bank slated to become a USO facility.

After determining client expectations, I knew that the Emesent Hovermap was the perfect tool for both jobs. My only concern was that the bank would be my first ever use of the Hovermap to document an entire, multistory building inside and out.

Kelly and Sam scanning the bunker with the Hovermap

It worked perfectly and, yes, 3 years in, the Hovermap continues to impress.

As with all of my projects the highlights are always the people I meet and get to work with and learn from. My archaeological education continues thanks to the patience of Sam Chovanec and Kelly Guerrieri. In return I got to show Kelly and Sam how to use the Hovermap. A symbiotic relationship if ever there was one!

Some the Hovermap scan data of the bank

We finished both buildings a bit ahead of schedule (the Hovermap is FAST) so I asked about “targets of opportunity.” Meaning, I’m here with the gear, is there anything else we can do for you?

What came back was the stuff this US Army vet and history nut could only dream about previously.

A former, completely overgrown mock up of a Vietnamese village used for training back in the day . . . and The United States Army Armor and Calvary Collection!

Kelly and I at the mock Vietnamese village gate
Just a sampling of the collection!

I decided on 3x vehicles to scan. The first was the 98 ton, only one of its kind, T-28 Super Heavy Tank. The second a WWII German Tiger Tank. The third a WWII British Lloyd Carrier.

The T-28 Super Heavy Tank
Scanning the T-28
Scanning the WWII, German Tiger Tank
Kelly and I scanning the British Carrier

Finally, I was shown the only known T-40 Whiz-Bang in existence. I’d never even heard of it! I did a quick photogrammetry/LiDAR scan of it with my phone. It’s due to be restored so getting good data of it before that begins has all sorts of value.

The T-40 Whiz-bang lying upside down awaiting restoration
The only known photo of a T-34 and T-40 together

My thanks to all of the good folks there at Ft. Benning. Wow, what a couple of days.

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