Now that you have your trip to Oahu booked, you can start planning for a trek back in time at the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument and the associated Pearl Harbor Historic Sites.

Explore the history surrounding one of the nation’s most devastating days, December 7th, 1941, the day a Japanese striking force launched a deadly assault on the American naval base of Pearl Harbor.

Japanese Foreign Minister Shigemitsu signs the Instrument of Surrender

In the wake of the attack, 2,403 Americans were dead and two battleships were completely destroyed. It left the nation fearing the possibility of a follow-up attack and forced it to engage in a war it had been trying to avoid. On December 8th, 1941, the United States declared war on Japan, thus opening the Pacific Theater of World War II.

During the war in the Pacific, some notable names arose. Among them, the USS Missouri (BB-63), a battleship that wasn’t even built at the time of the Pearl Harbor attack but still made a name for herself during her service in the Pacific, especially when she became the site of the ceremony where the Japanese signed the official surrender documents.

After being decommissioned, the “Mighty Mo” was returned to Pearl Harbor as a museum ship. Exploring the battleship gives visitors a look at how the crew lived while at sea. They also learn about the Missouri’s service history through the following exhibits.

 

The Crew’s Room

Ever wonder what it was like living aboard a battleship? The preserved Crew’s Room showcases a collection of artifacts donated by former USS Missouri crewmembers, on display in a recreation of the crew’s quarters.

See how they lived at sea for so long, and which items were most important to them once their service on board started.

The Chief Petty Officers Legacy Center

The USS Missouri currently serves as a training center for future Chief Petty Officers, so it makes sense that there would be an exhibit dedicated to the history of the Chief Petty Officer, the individual responsible for keeping the crew functioning smoothly.

In this exhibit, visitors learn about the history of the CPO and about some of the notable individuals who held the position.

Archives and Collections

Kamikaze plane just before hitting USS Missouri

This extensive collection of World War II relics brings to live the information about the Missouri’s service history, her crew, and the legacy she left behind. Read from the journal of ship’s baker Harold Campbell, and learn about the kamikaze attack on the Mighty Mo during the battle of Okinawa.

New artifacts are added frequently, ensuring that this collection of relics is constantly expanding.

 

 

The Korean War

USS Missouri fires her guns during the Korean Conflict

The Battleship Missouri’s service history extended well beyond World War II. This exhibit details her part in the Korean War, including information on her two tours of duty.

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