Join us tomorrow, Wednesday September 7, at noon for this this month’s Secrets in the Stacks. Tom Moore, Senior Curator of Photography and Photo Archivist, will share the Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation Collection. This extraordinary collection of photographs visually illustrates the role of Newport News as one of the major military Ports of Embarkation during World War II.
On December 7, 1941, war came to America with the Japanese attack at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. In a few short months, the Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation was activated. A giant natural harbor, Hampton Roads served the nation as a military port in the Spanish-American War and World War I. During World War II, port headquarters was established here in Newport News and the port ranked third in the nation, after New York and San Francisco, in volume of troops and war materiel shipped to both Europe and the South Pacific. The urbanization of Newport News since the 1940s has erased many of the landmarks that defined the area at the time, and most of us would not recognize very many of those which remain. The important role of the Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation in the war effort will be highlighted by this amazing collection of images.