For the thousands of U.S. sailors bound for the Pacific theatre of World War II, the Hawaiian Islands were the staging ground for an unknown fate. Their perception of Honolulu as a tropical paradise quickly deflated upon their arrival. The anticipation of a moonlit Diamond Head, affable hula girls, and free-flowing and affordable rum quickly materialized into crowded streets, beaches cordoned off with barbed wire, and endless lines to nowhere. Still, as with many ports of call, diversions were plentiful, and set against the warm trade winds, sailors took advantage of them on their last stop to hell.
Meticulously culled from a 30-year private collection of scrapbooks, photographs, and ephemera, the images that make up this book—beautifully packaged in a clothbound, tipped-in cover—present the dreams and realities of young men on their way to war in a Honolulu as exotic and forbidden as it was banal and lonely.
Hardcover, clothbound, 88 pages; 8 x 10 inches