Christmas 1941

Christmas 1941

Many Wake Island men sent cards and holiday gifts by ship’s mail in late November 1941, timed to reach loved ones at home just before the upcoming Christmas holiday. Some of the fellows reached deeper into their pockets to pay airmail rates and sent their cards on the eastbound Pan American Clipper. Despite the war clouds gathering over the Pacific, few on Wake worried that anything would hold up the mail unless Mother Nature cooked up...

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Pan American

Pan American

Pan American Airways was the first to establish a permanent settlement on Wake Island. Late in 1934 the commercial airline obtained permission from the U.S. government to build stations on Wake and Midway Islands for its transpacific Clipper operation. Protected lagoons offered calm waters for seaplane runways, though divers would have to blast many coral heads and shelves for safe depths. When operational the mid-Pacific stations would provide...

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Living in Infamy

Living in Infamy

December 7 carries a big burden. President Roosevelt had it right: this date lives in infamy. For Americans it will always be associated with the horrific Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. Every year on this day solemn ceremonies honor the lives lost and the irreversible descent into World War II. The hard-hit Pacific Fleet base at Pearl Harbor carries the banner, although the Japanese also targeted numerous other military installations...

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