TwHP Lessons

Remembering Pearl Harbor:
The USS Arizona Memorial

[Cover photo] USS Arizona Memorial
(Hawaiian Service, Inc.)

Today the battle-scarred, submerged remains of the battleship USS Arizona rest on the silt of Pearl Harbor, just as they settled on December 7, 1941. The ship was one of many casualties from the deadly attack by the Japanese on a quiet Sunday that President Franklin Roosevelt called "a date which will live in infamy." The Arizona's burning bridge and listing mast and superstructure were photographed in the aftermath of the Japanese attack, and news of her sinking was emblazoned on the front page of newspapers across the land. The photograph symbolized the destruction of the United States Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor and the start of a war that was to take many thousands of American lives. Indelibly impressed into the national memory, the image could be recalled by most Americans when they heard the battle cry, "Remember Pearl Harbor."

More than a million people visit the USS Arizona Memorial each year. They file quietly through the building and toss flower wreaths and leis into the water. They watch the iridescent slick of oil that still leaks, a drop at a time, from ruptured bunkers after more than 50 years at the bottom of the sea, and they read the names of the dead carved in marble on the Memorial's walls.


About This Lesson

Getting Started: Inquiry Question

Setting the Stage: Historical Context

Locating the Site: Maps
 1. Hawaii and Japan
 2. The Island of Oahu
 3. Pearl Harbor

Determining the Facts: Readings
 1. The Attack on Pearl Harbor
 2. The USS Arizona Memorial

Determining the Facts: Charts
 1. December 7, 1941, Losses
 2. Brothers Aboard the USS Arizona, Dec. 7, 1941

Visual Evidence: Images
 1. The USS Arizona setting out from
 New York, 1918

 2. USS Arizona burns and sinks, Dec. 7, 1941
 3. Aerial and interior views of the
 USS Arizona Memorial

 4. Aerial view of Pearl Harbor today

Putting It All Together: Activities
 1. Pearl Harbor and the Casualties of War
 2. Comparing Textbook Accounts
 3. Survivors of War
 4. Examining War Memorials

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USS Arizona Memorial

This lesson is based on the USS Arizona Memorial, one of the thousands of properties listed in the National Register of Historic Places.




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