The Northwest Connection

The Northwest Connection

The Depression-era workers who hired on for the big prewar navy construction projects in the Pacific came from many states, but a good number hailed from the Pacific and Inland Northwest. In 1939-40 the navy contracted with a consortium of big construction companies to build naval air stations and facilities on Oahu, Palmyra, Johnston, Midway, and Wake Island (and later in the western Pacific at Guam, Cavite in the Philippines, and American...

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The Wake 98

The Wake 98

Every few weeks I write a post to highlight the ongoing mission of the Joint POW-MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) to locate family members of the 98 men massacred on Wake Island in 1943 for possible DNA matches. For more information, see my November 2012 post on the JPAC Mission. This week I want to talk about the nearly 100 men who drew their last breath on the north beach of Wake, October 7, 1943. When the Tachibana Maru pulled away from Wake...

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Wake Island Birds

Wake Island Birds

Wake’s human population may be small these days, but the neighborhoods are full to bursting with birds (see video link below!). The remote, isolated atoll has hosted a wide variety of migratory and resident seabirds for time out of mind. The ravages of the WWII Japanese occupation and postwar feral cat predation left indelible marks, but researchers are encouraged by signs of robust recovery across the atoll. During my visit to Wake in the...

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