As early as the 19th century, the Confederation began to collect historic army material – albeit rather selectively and not very systematically. There were various projects (International War and Peace Museum in Lucerne, War Museum in Schadau Castle in Thun, museum projects in Murten, Bern and Thun), but a Federal or Swiss Army Museum could not be realized.
In 1978, the Swiss Army Museum Association (VSAM) was founded. The association collected army material and was intensively engaged in the planning of an army museum. In 2000, these plans were rendered obsolete by a decision of Parliament.
The project gained new momentum in April 2007 with the appointment of a DDPS delegate for the historic material of the armed forces. On July 23, 2008, the Swiss Army Museum Association (VSAM) established the Foundation in Thun. Thus, a project that had been initiated again and again – from different parties – in the history of the SwissFederation could now be guided into clearly defined paths.