1. Skip to Menu
  2. Skip to Content
  3. Skip to Footer

Welcome to Drum Barracks

Welcome to Drum Barracks

Located in Wilmington, California, Drum Barracks Civil War Museum is housed in the last remaining original wooden building of the 22 structures built as a military post during the Civil War in the Los Angeles area. Drum Barracks, named after Lt. Col. Richard Coulter Drum, Adjutant General of the Department of the Pacific in San Francisco, served as the Union Army headquarters for Southern California and the Arizona Territory from 1861-1871. Please enjoy exploring our past and our present.



The third largest Civil War library in California!

The McDowell Library is available to researchers, requires an appointment, so researchers may be assisted in utilizing the wide variety of resources that comprise the collections. To inquire about using the library, please call the Museum at 310-548-7509.

The collection includes the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies and Navies, and the Supplement to the Official Records.

Docent Training Class 2017

Docent Training Class 2017

Learn to share your knowledge and enjoyment of the Civil War with visitors. A series of five Docent Training class sessions are scheduled on Saturdays starting Saturday April 1, 2017 ending Saturday April 29, 2017. 9:30 am - 11:30 am. Attendance at all five classes is mandatory. These sessions are free and are only offered once per year, so don't delay. Call or email for additional information, or to reserve your place in the class.

Civil War Day Camp

Civil War Day Camp

Registration is now open for Civil War Day Camp.

"Explore life of a soldier, dig for artifacts, and make crafts." Friday, March 24 from 9:30am-2:30pm, appropriate for ages 8-10 (3rd, 4th, and 5th grade). Registration fee is $20 each day, provides lunch, snack, and souvenir. Space is limited!! Call 310.548.7509 for registration information. Registration Deadline - March 17, 2017.

Catalina Outpost:

Catalina Outpost:

Military Possession of Catalina Island   On display February-October 2017

In 1864, soldiers from Drum Barracks took military possession of Catalina Island.  Under orders they attempted to removed all non-government employees from the island.  Using maps, photographs, paintings and official reports this exhibition looks at Catalina's role in the Civil War, and the controversial reasons behind the Army's decision to take possession of the island. 

  • Welcome to Drum Barracks

    Welcome to Drum Barracks

  • Library


  • Docent Training Class 2017

    Docent Training Class 2017

  • Civil War Day Camp

    Civil War Day Camp

  • Catalina Outpost:

    Catalina Outpost:

Drum Barracks Highlights artifacts, exhibits & historical figures...

Gatling Gun

Dr. Richard Gatling, who designed and patented the gun in 1861...

1864 Steinway square grand piano

Square Piano

The Museum's square or box piano was built in 1869 by Steinway...

Dunbar autograph book

Dunbar Autograph Book

This autograph book, with signatures collected by Gilbert Edwin Dunbar, contains...

34-star flag

34-Star Flag

This 34-star flag was hand made during the Civil War and was found on the...


Did You Know... frequently asked questions

Drum Barracks is partnering with the Civil War Trust for Park Service Day, April 1, 2017

Help clean up Civil War sites in Wilmington, California.  People of all ages are invited to lend a hand washing signs, pulling weeds, raking leaves and sweeping paths.  Guides will share historical information at each of the sites visited.  Participants will receive t-shirts and promotional items (while supplies last).  Meet at Drum Barracks Civil War Museum at 9:00 am.  For additional information call 310.548.7509.    


Find Us:

1052 N. Banning Boulevard, Wilmington, CA 90744
(310) 548-7509
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Public Tour Schedule

Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
10:00 am and 11:30 am

Saturday and Sunday
11:30 am and 1:00 pm

The Drum Barracks Civil War Museum is closed to the public Monday and Friday.

There are no self guided tours, the only way to view the museum is on a guided tour.
A $5 donation is requested per person, children under 12 are free.

Reservations are required for groups of six or more.  Appointments are required to use our research library.  Call 310.548.7509 for an appointment.  

Volunteer Today!

Opportunities are open to volunteer as tour docents, to assist in our Civil War library, to assist in our Museum Shop, and to assist with research and exhibition projects. Sign up today!

Previous Next
California and the Civil War
California and the Civil War
Drum Barracks Events
Remembrance Day
Remembrance Day
Nov. 18, 2017 | 2 pm
A Civil War Christmas
A Civil War Christmas
Dec. 2-3, 2017 | 11 am - 4 pm
Civil War Book Club
Civil War Book Club
2nd Tuesday of the month

Drum Barracks logo Drum Barracks Civil War Museum
U.S. Army Headquarters for Southern California and Arizona Territory, 1862-1871
City of Los Angeles Historic Monument #21, 1963
State of California Historical Landmark #69, 1935
National Register of Historic Places, 1971