New VR Experience Takes Visitors Inside Pearl Harbor

Honolulu Star-Bulletin

An hour after the Dec. 7, 1941, Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the Honolulu Star-Bulletin published a “1st Extra” edition. (Newseum collection)

On Dec. 7, 1941, Japanese aircraft attacked the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor. With that, the United States officially entered World War II and an entire generation was changed forever. The surprise attack by the Imperial Japanese Navy became a “date which will live in infamy,” when four U.S. battleships were sunk, 2,403 servicemen killed and 1,178 wounded. The American public was shocked and unnerved by the attack on its home soil.

Pearl Harbor is essential to the framework of American history. With the new “Remembering Pearl Harbor” VR experience currently available in the Newseum’s Virtual Reality Lab, visitors can now witness the attacks on Pearl Harbor through the eyes of a survivor, and experience personal accounts of the event’s aftermath.

Visitors can also explore issues of Life magazine that would have been in American homes at that time, listen to President Roosevelt address the nation over the radio the day after the attack, interact with personal mementos and much more. This immersive historical experience, developed by Deluxe VR in partnership with HTC Vive, is narrated by Lieutenant James Downing, a 103-year-old Navy veteran who was aboard the USS West Virginia at the time of the attack.

“Remembering Pearl Harbor” is open to Newseum visitors and free with admission through Sunday, Dec. 11.

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