We’ve done our best to make sure that when you step into the Pearl Harbor Warbirds WWII bunker, you’re stepping back in time to 1941.
Imagine yourself stepping into the role of a Navy ensign who is temporarily assigned to the U.S. Coast Guard air detachment at Barbers Point. Your classified mission requires aerial reconnaissance of Oahu’s shattered military defenses. The mission will last about three hours and will begin with briefings from both the War Department and the Navy.
For those briefings you’ll have to report to a WWII military office. Here are 10 things that will give you near sensory overload in the most positive way.
1. The unmistakable scent of Old Spice
Wherever U.S. soldiers went, Old Spice followed. The signature Old Spice scent went all over the globe and became synonymous with United States soldiers. That’s why when you step back in time on a Pearl Harbor Warbirds tour, you’ll smell the strong scent of Old Spice.
2. Beautiful black and white pinup poster girl photos
World War II in 1941 was the golden age of pinup poster girls. For the first time in history, the US military unofficially sanctioned the creation and distribution of pinup pictures, magazines and calendars to troops in order to raise morale and remind young men what they were fighting for. These vintage WWII pinup posters adorned servicemen’s lockers, the walls of barracks, and even the sides of planes. To this day, pinup fans emulate the vintage style of pinups that was triggered during WWII.
3. The consistent sound of a typewriter
Back in World War II, you had two choices when writing a letter: handwritten or typewriter.
There was no computer you could write a letter on and send via email or Twitter. There were no cell phones were you could send a text message or Snapchat. Just a good ol’ pen and paper, or typewriter.
4. Ashtrays overflowing with cigarette butts
WWII Americans loved to smoke cigarettes. Who could blame them? Movie stars smoked. The president smoked. The heroes fighting the enemy overseas smoked. No one quite knew the extent of the dangers of inhaling all that tar and carbon monoxide from those nifty little sticks of shredded tobacco rolled neatly in paper and sold in such handsome and handy packages.
That’s why you’ll find Lucky Strike cigarette butts overflowing in the ashtrays.
5. The songs of Jimmy Dorsey and Irving Berlin
Of course, these songs have to fight for supremacy over the constant tapping of teletype machines. But, if you listen closely, you’ll hear the music of WWII – American jazz.
6. Hot coffee on the stove
A necessity now and always.
7. Newspapers and magazines strewn across the office
Gotta pass the time and dream about something else besides the battlefield.
Can never have enough intel and strategy.
9. Chatter from the airport’s control tower
This is 3 days after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Everybody is on alert. All the military has been recalled. We do have the (USS) Enterprise back in port, and reinforcements are coming from the Mainland, but we just don’t know how many or from where. We don’t know a lot, but the information from the intel folks is trickling in.
10. A heightened sense of fear and urgency
On Dec. 8 Wake Island was attacked. Three days later a landing attempt was made by the Japanese but they were held off. A second invasion force was attempted three weeks later, and Wake fell to the Japanese military. You’re on edge. America has just joined WWII, and you’re in the middle of it.
Pearl Harbor Warbirds offers the best Hawai‘i flight adventure tours available. Be immersed in the details of the infamous attack on Pearl Harbor and soar above the important sites that played a part in the “Day of Infamy.” Relive history as you retrace the steps of the Army and Navy airmen in the days following the bombing. Fly on some of the same routes the Japanese attackers used into the airfields at Wheeler, Kāne‘ohe and Bellows. There are many air tours in Hawai‘i, but only one warbird airplane flight. Located in Honolulu, Hawai‘i Pearl Harbor Warbirds provides a personal historical experience making it one of the best O‘ahu attractions.
Fly Pearl Harbor like it was on December 10th, 1941. Learn more about our Admiral’s Warbird Adventure.