New ‘Mighty Mo’ exhibit chronicles World War II era

| February 6, 2015 | 0 Comments
Photo courtesy of Battleship Missouri Memorial The retired USS Missouri today is berthed at Pier Foxtrot 5 on Ford Island in Pearl Harbor and welcomes visitors daily as the Battleship Missouri Memorial. (Photo courtesy of Battleship Missouri Memorial)

Photo courtesy of Battleship Missouri Memorial
The retired USS Missouri today is berthed at Pier Foxtrot 5 on Ford Island in Pearl Harbor and welcomes visitors daily as the Battleship Missouri Memorial. (Photo courtesy of Battleship Missouri Memorial)

Battleship Missouri Memorial
News Release
EARL HARBOR — Pier Foxtrot 5 buzzed with the music of the Big Band era, women dressed as “Rosie the Riveter” paced on the pier, and Soldiers from all periods of America’s history marched on the decks of the retired USS Missouri for the second annual Living History Day, Saturday.

History came to life at the Battleship Missouri Memorial to celebrate two notable anniversaries for the Mighty Mo: the first being the USS Missouri’s launch into service 71 years ago (Jan. 29, 1944), and the second being its opening in Pearl Harbor for public tours 16 years ago (Jan. 29, 1999).

Photo courtesy of National Archives Miss Margaret Truman, the USS Missouri’s sponsor, prepares to christen the battleship, during the launching ceremony at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, Jan. 29, 1944. Looking on are (left to right) Rear Adm. Monroe R. Kelly, Brooklyn Navy Yard commandant; Rear Adm. Sherman S. Kennedy; and U.S. Senator Harry S. Truman of Missouri.

Photo courtesy of National Archives
Miss Margaret Truman, the USS Missouri’s sponsor, prepares to christen the battleship, during the launching ceremony at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, Jan. 29, 1944. Looking on are (left to right) Rear Adm. Monroe R. Kelly, Brooklyn Navy Yard commandant; Rear Adm. Sherman S. Kennedy; and U.S. Senator Harry S. Truman of Missouri.

The day also marked the public unveiling of the Battleship Missouri Memorial’s newest historical exhibit, “The War that Changed the World,” and began the Mighty Mo’s build-up to the commemoration ceremony honoring the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, taking place on Sept. 2.

“With Living History Day, we look back to honor the USS Missouri and all the men and women who have fought for and supported the preservation of America’s freedoms,” said Michael Carr, president and CEO of the Battleship Missouri Memorial. “But today we are also looking ahead to the momentous date of Sept. 2nd, the 70th anniversary of when history’s biggest war ended onboard the USS Missouri, with the opening of a new exhibit honoring the memories of the Soldiers and civilians of that era.”

A highlight of the festivities was a special presentation by Congressman Mark Takai, who was sworn into office earlier this month. Takai presented his first certificate as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives to the Battleship Missouri Memorial, honoring the staff and volunteers for their dedication in sharing the Mighty Mo’s place in history with the world.

“I commend the Battleship Missouri Memorial for their dedication to providing current and future generations the opportunity to experience this world-class battleship, and to be inspired by the universal values represented here of duty, honor, strength, sacrifice and peace,” Takai said.

Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy The USS Missouri approaches the end of her building as she is launched, Jan. 29, 1944, from the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy
The USS Missouri approaches the end of her building as she is launched, Jan. 29, 1944, from the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

Displays, Exhibits and Performances
Living History Day at the Battleship Missouri Memorial offered a variety of entertaining displays, exhibits, musical performances and re-enactments of historical figures for the enjoyment of guests. Highlights included the following:
•“General Douglas MacArthur” greeting visitors in the Captain’s Cabin just outside the famed Surrender Deck where the real-life general presided over the ceremony ending World War II.
•A Civil War-era warship blowing its steam engine.
•Couples from Hawaii Jitterbugs dancing to Big Band swing music.
•Soldiers of the Marine Forces Pacific Party Band performed hits for all ages to enjoy.
•Special tours of the Radio Room and mailing station from the ship’s Post Office.
•New World War II Exhibit: The War That Changed the World.

New Exhibit Features
With the use of photos, posters, artwork, film and quotes captured during World War II, the Battleship Missouri Memorial’s newest exhibit display provides guests with an even greater understanding of the war’s turmoil, danger, bravery and, ultimately, triumph for freedom.

Titled, The War that Changed the World, the new exhibit is located one level below the main deck and immediately takes visitors back in time to a living room with an old-style radio, which, other than the newspaper, was the only source for daily information about the war.

Visitors are then immersed into a walking timeline of World War II, starting with a recreation of the moment when America learned that it had been thrust into the war with the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

Real-life artifacts and oversized images illustrate the war’s impact on people’s lives and memorable quotes from some of the era’s most important figures capture the sentiments of that time.

Missouri logoBattleship Missouri Memorial
Since opening in January 1999, the Battleship Missouri Memorial has attracted more than 6 million visitors from around the world with a fascinating tour experience showcasing the USS Missouri’s unique place in history.

Located a mere ship’s length from the USS Arizona Memorial, the Mighty Mo completes a historical visitor experience that begins with the “day of infamy” and sinking of the USS Arizona in Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, and ends with Imperial Japan’s surrender aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay on Sept. 2, 1945.

The USS Missouri had an astounding career over five decades and three wars – World War II, the Korean War and Desert Storm – after which it was decommissioned and donated to the USS Missouri Memorial Association, Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

The Association operates the Battleship Missouri Memorial as a historic attraction and oversees her care and preservation with the support of visitors, memberships, grants and donations.

The Battleship Missouri Memorial is open daily from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
General admission, which includes choice of an optional tour, is $25 per adult and $13 per child (4-12). Military, kama-aina (local resident) and school group pricing is available.

For information or reservations, call (toll-free) 1-877-644-4896, or visit USSMissouri.org.

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Category: Community, Community Relations

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