In Europe in the 1930’s, the Germans, under the leadership of Adolf Hitler, proceeded to expand. Hitler believed his nation could become a world power. All of Europe was threatened. Even though the United States had not declared war on the Germans, President Roosevelt was sympathetic to England and secretly supplied them with military equipment because he believed Hitler was a threat to Europe and the World.
On December 7, 1941, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, forcing the United States to declare war on Japan in the Pacific.
At this time, The United States became a major force in Europe with General Dwight D. Eisenhower becoming the Supreme Allied Commander.
The Second World War continued until the advance of the Allies caused Hitler to shoot himself on April 30, 1945. The news of Hitler’s death accelerated wholesale surrenders of German troops to the Western Allies. V-E Day (Victory in Europe) was complete when the surrender was signed May 7, 1945.
In the Pacific, the United States demanded an unconditional surrender from the Japanese. Japan refused to give up until the United States dropped two Atomic Bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. More than 140,000 people died in those attacks. The unconditional surrender was signed on the deck of the USS Missouri, September 2, 1945.
The Motts Military Museum contains many items with extraordinary personal stories from the Second World War. This includes a major exhibit from Counter Intelligence Corps. Agent, Robert R. Richards and many items donated by Gen. Paul Tibbets, the pilot of the Enola Gay, which dropped the first atomic bomb on August 6, 1945.
This WWII Landing Craft “Higgins Boat” is one
of a very few still in existence in the world.
Sam Belfiore was the pilot of this landing
craft in the South Pacific, participating
in seven assault landings.
He received the Silver
Star for Bravery.
This embattled flag was flying from the USS Gallup when our invasion forces liberated the Philippines, October 17, 1944. B/M 2/C Mike Pallos served on the USS Gallup during this invasion and donated the flag to the Motts Military Museum.
This corn cob pipe belonged
to General Douglas MacArthur.