Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Tinian Photos

Amphibious tractors and landing boats leave streaming white wakes as they scurry back and forth hauling Marines from assault vessels to the Tinian beachhead.

Making certain that their rifles are kept dry, this wave of Marine assault troops disembarks from landing craft and wade through waist-deep surf to join their comrades on the Tinian beachhead.

A jeep is unloaded from an amphibious duck at Tinian. Marines use a portable crane for unloading the amphibious vehicles during landing operations.

Amphibious landing craft bring Marines and artillery ashore during the second day of the assault on Tinian. Ducks (amphibious trucks) carry the artillery inland to their positions and shortly after, Marine gunners were hurling shells at the enemy.

When this Marine was wounded while on a patrol in the interior of Tinian, his buddies helped him back to an aid station near the American lines.

All of the above photos were taken on Tinian by Norm Hatch. They are part of the museum's collection.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

You Search, They Donate, We Benefit

Sounds too easy, right? Thanks to a company called GoodSearch, every time you do an internet search, the Admiral Nimitz Foundation receives a donation. Go to www.GoodSearch.com, type Admiral Nimitz Foundation where it asks who you GoodSearch for and start searching! The donation comes out to be about one penny per search, but that can add up. If we have 500 supporters doing 5 searches a day, that adds up to over $9,000 in a year. Now it just sounds too good to be true, right? Over 91,000 non-profits can’t be wrong. The ASPCA alone has earned $34,000 through GoodSearch.

If you are an online shopper, there’s even more you can do to help out the museum. GoodShop.com is an online shopping mall with hundreds of great stores that all donate a percentage of your purchase back to the Admiral Nimitz Foundation. All stores have different donation percentages but just think, if you make that next online purchase through GoodShop, you’ll be getting your new merchandise and the store you shopped through will be making a donation to a good cause.

And the best part is that GoodSearch is the one doing the donating, all the supporter is doing is asking that the donation be made to the Admiral Nimitz Foundation. Either make GoodSearch your homepage or download the GoodSearch – Admiral Nimitz Foundation toolbar to your computer at http://www.goodsearch.com/toolbar/admiral-nimitz-foundation so it is always at your fingertips. Thanks in advance for showing your support through your standard internet use!

Note: If you want to know more about how it works, who is involved, where the money comes from, etc., go to www.GoodSearch.com. Their website is very informative and easy to navigate.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Japanese Midget Submarine

The National Museum of the Pacific War is fortunate to house one of five Japanese midget submarines intended for use during the attack on Pearl Harbor. After developing problems with her gyrocompass, Ha-19 was forced to make a visual entrance to the harbor and later ran aground on a coral reef off of Bellows Field on Waimanolo Beach. Her batteries were drained attempting to back off the reef and the two crewmen evacuated. Ensign Kazuo Sakamaki, who was piloting the submarine that morning, was captured becoming the first prisoner of war. In 1991, Sakamaki came to the museum as a symposium participant, where he was reunited with former Army Lieutenant, Steve Weiner, who was among his interrogators following his capture. This was his first public appearance related to his war service.

The exhibit panel near the submarine’s viewing windows reads as follows:

Ha-19 was one of the five Japanese midget submarines used in the attack on Pearl Harbor, 7 December 1941. The next day, the damaged vessel washed ashore. The War Finance Committee soon put it to use to promote the sale of War Bonds. From 1942 to 1945, Ha-19 toured the United States, including a visit to Fredericksburg in 1943.

Windows were cut into the starboard hull of Ha-19 for public viewing of the interior. Dummy equipment, including sheet metal cones to simulate torpedo warheads, and two mannequins dressed as Imperial Japanese Navy crewmen were installed.

Eight War Bond drives raised a total of $185.7 billion, roughly half the cost of the war.”

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

395th Army Reserve Band Comes to Fredericksburg

There’s no better way to spend a summer Sunday evening than listening to good music outside while having a picnic! The National Museum of the Pacific War is hosting a free concert by the 395th Army Reserve Band on Sunday July 18 at 6:00 in the evening where you can do just that.

We invite you all to bring your friends, family, blankets and a picnic out to the Memorial Courtyard for a set of German music followed by the Concert Band’s patriotic and big band tunes. We were fortunate enough to host this band last year, their performance was crowd-pleasing to say the least. The 395th plays free shows throughout the southwest in hopes to entertain as well as carry the message of patriotism and serve as the Army Reserve Ambassadors. We hope you’ll join us for this event!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Kids in WWII

The following story is taken from Ellice Smart from New York. She was seven years old when Pearl Harbor was attacked.

I had rheumatic Fever as a child and had to stay on my back all day. My father was a graduate of the Naval Academy and re-entered the service shortly before the war started and was sent to Norfolk, VA. My illness made the move rather difficult but soon after we got there, I was healthy enough to walk again.

My father was sent to Trinidad and he and my mother wrote to each other every day. They numbered their letters to make sure that every one made it.

During the winter we would sled down the hill across from our house until our mittens were too wet, then we would come home and set them on the radiator to dry and pick up our other pair to go back out.

I remember coffee being rationed, it was very precious to my mother. My uncle was a Seabee and when he came to visit we had a special dinner with nice little blue containers for each person's salt. My uncle thought it was sugar and dumped it into his coffee. He was very distressed and insisted that he not have any more but my mother gave him another cup anyway.

Dad was coming home for a brief time and mom told him to take a taxi from the airport; she was worried she would be too excited to drive. Right as he was supposed to get there, I ripped the hem from my dress. I had to stand in front of the couch looking for him out the window while Mom hemmed it, she told me she would get as much done as she could before he got there and then she would just end off her stitch and leave it. He got to the house while she was still hemming; I don’t remember how much was finished.

Dad came home after the war ended in Europe. He returned while my brother and I were at camp. My parents picked us up early and we started our next move, to California. From there, my dad was transferred out to the Philippines but the war with the Japanese ended while he was on his way over. He came home that fall.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Battle of Saipan

The Battle of Saipan took place between 15 June and 9 July 1944. The following are photos of the Battle of Saipan from the museum’s collection.

Clambering down a loading net, Marines leave a troop transport to board landing craft bound for the Saipan beachhead.

The first wave of Marines to hit the Saipan beach take cover behind a sand dune while waiting for supporting waves to land and start the drive inland.

When the Marines hit the beach at Saipan, many ammunition cases were broken open in the ensuing action and their contents scattered on the beach. These Leathernecks are salvaging belts and cartridges of thirty and fifty caliber sizes.

Two Marines run for cover after setting off a charge of high explosives in a Japanese dugout position during mopping up operations on Saipan.

Marine corporal Doris E. Bankhead of Roscoe, Texas, proudly displays a Japanese light machine gun that he found intact on Saipan.

Saipan souvenirs have been the best yet and these Marines boast the largest Japanese flag in captivity, 11 feet wide by 17 feet long, discovered when they took refuge in a Japanese garrison barracks during an artillery barrage at Tanapag Harbor.

Marines and Navy corpsmen give first aid to a Japanese girl who suffered a slight leg wound during the battle of Saipan.

Marine First Sergeant Neil I. Shober of Fort Wayne, Indiana, shares the spoils of war bananas with a native goat, one of the few survivors of the terrific naval and air bombardment in support of the Marines hitting the beach on the Japanese-mandated island of Saipan.

Marines found the body of Lieutenant General Yoshige Saito in a cave above Tanapag on Saipan and gave him a funeral with full military honors in accordance with Geneva Convention code. Here, Leathernecks prepare to lower the flag-draped coffin into its resting place.