December 7, 2009

Remembering Pearl Harbor

This urgent radiogram to "All ships present at Hawaiin Area" announced the December 7, 1941 attack on the US Pacific Fleet based in Pearl Harbor:
WWII Pearl Harbor attack radiogram

The surprise attack damaged all eight battleships anchored in the harbor and caused over 3,000 American casualties.
Pearl Harbor 13.JPG

1,177 died on the USS Arizona and are remembered with a memorial that was built over the top of the still visible remains of the battleship which lies at the bottom of the harbor.

The memorial includes a wall with the names of those killed on the Arizona in 1941 and a place for those who have died since and had their remains "interred with their shipmates."
page; Pearl Harbor, USS Arizona Memorial

On Footnote, you'll find an interactive image of the memorial wall where you can learn more about those who died or if you have images or stories about someone whose name appears, you can add them.

The day after the attack, President Franklin D Roosevelt delivered his famous "Day of Infamy" speech to Congress. In his speech, Roosevelt asked Congress to declare that, since the attack on Pearl Harbor, a state of war had existed between the United States and the Empire of Japan. You can hear the full six and a half minute speech on this Wikipedia page.

Within an hour of the speech, Congress passed a formal declaration of war which Roosevelt signed, bringing the United States into World War II.
Page 1; Selected Photographs of Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1913-1945

In honor of Pearl Harbor Day, Footnote is making their WWII collection free during December. You can read more on the Footnote Blog or see the World War II collection here.

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