December 7th, 1941, was an important day in the history of the United States. It was on this day when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and damaged many of the battleships there. This day marked the beginning of World War II.
When visiting Pearl Harbor, you’ll be able to see the different exhibits and learn about the history that took place. Feel free to read our previous posts on the Arizona Memorial and the USS Bowfin, which gives a bit more detail of each exhibit.
Now we visit a ship which marks another major role in this historical event.
The construction of the USS Missouri was underway throughout World War II. It was built in the Brooklyn Navy Yard and made its first launch in January 1944. The ship was commissioned in June 1944. And it arrived in Pearl Harbor in December 1944.
The USS Missouri played a part in World War II as it fought in the battles of Iwo Jima and Okinawa. But it also became an iconic location in World War II history, as it was the place where the war ended. Representatives of Japan were invited onboard the USS Missouri at Tokyo Bay on September 2, 1945. At this time, Japan and the United States signed an “Instrument of Surrender” which restored peace to the world and ended years of devastation.
Following World War II, Missouri also fought in the Korean War and Operation Desert Storm. But it was removed from the Navy’s registry in 1995. The ship arrived in Waikiki in June 1998. Later, it was open to the public by the Battleship Missouri Memorial as a museum ship.
Today, visitors of Pearl Harbor can gain entrance to the ship by purchasing the Mighty Mo Pass (currently priced at $29 at the time of this writing). With this pass, you’ll be able to board the ship and experience many of the archives and collections left behind by previous crew members. Hear accounts of the Battle of Okinawa. Honor service members from the Korean War. At most, you’ll gain a better understanding of what life was like at sea while onboard the USS Missouri.
Image by: Carthage Press