History & Culture

Marianas Campaign of World War II

Marines dig in on the beachhead at Saipan
Marines dig in on the beachhead at Saipan

Photo courtesy of U.S. Marine Corps

At 0840 on June 15, 1944, initial waves of the 2nd and 4th U.S. Marine Divisions stormed onto a narrow beachhead on Saipan. The enemy guns were ranged-in on the beaches and shells rained down with deadly effect. Marine units, supported by Naval and Army Air Corps bombardment, and joined by the U.S. Army's 27th Infantry Division, waged savage warfare. For most of the soldiers, seamen, and airmen it was yet another invasion. For many it would be their last. For the world it was the beginning of the end of the Pacific War.

The Marianas Campaign of World War II was the most decisive battle of the Pacific Theater. With Saipan secured on July 9th, U.S. Forces were able to cut off vital Japanese supply and communication lines, and American B-29 bombers moved within range of the Japanese homeland. The end of the war with Japan followed 14 months later.

Honoring Their Sacrifice


As a result of the Marianas Campaign, thousands of military personnel and many island residents lost their lives. American Memorial Park serves as a living legacy and honors their sacrifice at three distinct locations within the park: the Memorial Court of Honor and Flag Circle, the Marianas Memorial and the Saipan American Memorial and Carillon Bell Tower. Honoring Their Sacrifice displays images, additional information, and the names of individuals who are memorialized.

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

To learn more, visit the Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Initiative.

Last updated: February 20, 2019

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P.O. Box 5198
Saipan, MP 96950


(670) 234-7207 x2002

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