The Importance of Remembering Pearl Harbor

It’s a sad fact that as time passes, the memories of some of the most important days in history begin to grow dim. Will we be able to keep these memories alive and make sure they never fade away? Nothing is certain, but for Pearl Harbor, the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument plays an important part. It serves as an attempt to never let the world forget about the terrible events of December 7, 1941. That day changed the course of American and world history.

The national monument honors the servicemen and civilians affected by the surprise Japanese attack with both exhibits and memorials. However, it’s not the only place to learn more about the history of Pearl Harbor. The Bishop Museum in Honolulu also honors local residents who lived through this remarkable day in history. Together, the two create a more complete picture of the history of the attack, the events that followed, and the attack’s effect on World War II.

Pearl Harbor and Beyond

Part of the “Road to War” exhibit at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center

The place where a major historical event took place is nearly always the best place to explore the story behind it. That is definitely true in the case of the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument. It’s hard to forget what you learn from this tour of history, starting with a stop at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center. The center of everything related to the attack, the Visitor Center features two exhibit galleries called “Road to War” and “Attack.” These galleries feature objects from before, during, and after the attack. Some were pulled from the wreckage, while others were gathered over the years from sailors and their families.

Preservation is the key to making sure that memories of historical events last. For this reason, these exhibits are among the most important parts of the story.

Adding to the collection of historical objects from December 7 is the Bishop Museum’s “Homefront Hawaii” exhibit. It features items not seen at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center and lets you dig deeper into the effect of the attack on the people of Oahu, and Hawaii in general.

Remembering Pearl Harbor

Remember Pearl Harbor Tour

Why is it so important to remember the events of Pearl Harbor?

Without the attack on December 7, 1941, there’s no telling where the course of World War II might have led. Maybe the United States would have stayed out of the physical conflict long enough for Germany and Japan to gain an advantage over the Allies. If that had happened, Germany and Japan may have been the victors even if the US had entered the war later on. It’s important to keep in mind the events of the past, as they help write the future even as they move ever further back in time.

Pearl Harbor touched many lives, both military and civilian. Although decades have passed since that ill-fated day in December of 1941, it remains as important today as it was over 75 years ago.