Hello, readers! My name is Brian Whitenton, and I’m now writing for The Mariners’ Museum Library blog as well The Mariners’ Museum Connections blog! Yaay!
So as we speak, one of the last remaining World War II battleships – the USS Iowa – is being towed to Los Angeles. Once it arrives, it will be a floating museum similar to the USS Wisconsin in Norfolk, Virginia. Fitting, since the USS Iowa and USS Wisconsin are both the same class of battleship (the Iowa class). This class was designed while WW II was raging, but what about the battleships that were already in existence? What about the ones at Pearl Harbor, for example?
A fine example of the battleships found in the US Navy before WWII was the USS Pennsylvania. Present at Pearl Harbor when the Japanese attacked, Pennsylvania suffered only light damage and was able to be quickly repaired. The Mariners’ Museum Library has a host of treasures concerning Pennsylvania in the C. F. Richards Collection, including newspaper clippings about Pearl Harbor and a big scrapbook made by Richards detailing the places he visited. The men who served on both Iowa and Pennsylvania saw terrible things in the Pacific theater during the war, but sometimes they also saw beautiful, exotic places. Come check it out!