HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Do you know your Pennsylvania history?
There’s a new exhibit at the State Museum in Harrisburg highlighting the state’s involvement in a day that will live in infamy. That’s the attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, a day the USS Pennsylvania, the flagship of the U.S. Navy was damaged.
“It took a bomb hit that day. Twenty-four crew members were killed instantly in the Pearl Harbor attack,” museum curator Bob Hill said.
Detailing the ship’s incredible history, the State Museum has a new exhibit called Pennsylvania at War, the Saga of the USS Pennsylvania.
In 1912, construction of the battleship was authorized by Congress. The USS Pennsylvania spent World War I patrolling the Atlantic coast never sighting a German ship. The scale model replica is made of wood, fiberglass and other materials and is on loan from a family in Franklin County.
“The propellers function. The rudders turn. It navigates the waters and the gun turrets turn,” Hill said.
The exhibit also features the centerpiece from the ship’s official Silver Service, uniforms, personal items of crew members and a shrapnel fragment taken from the ship after it was damaged by a torpedo in 1945.
“It was the last major American warship hit by the Japanese on Aug. 12, 1945. Two days later, the war ended,” Hill said.
After the war, the USS Pennsylvania hosted special ceremonies including presidential visits. She was decommissioned in 1946 and later sunk, stern first, in 1948 off the Marshall Islands. Two of her 14-inch guns rest outside the Pennsylvania Military Museum in Boalsburg.
Pennsylvania at War is on display through the end of the year at the State Museum in Harrisburg. For more information, go to statemuseumpa.org.Get breaking news, weather and traffic on the go. Download our News App and our Weather App for your phone and tablet.