USS Bowfin NHL: National Submarine Day

Welcome back to National Parks and other public lands with T!

Happy National Submarine Day! Senator Thomas J. Dodd introduced a bill to designate April 11th as National Submarine Day in 1969. This date commemorates the United State’s purchase of the USS Holland, the fleet’s first modern submarine. The US purchased the Holland in 1900!

The USS Bowfin launched a year after the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor (and four decades after the Holland.) She served in the Pacific during World War II and also during the Korean War. After the wars, the Navy used her for training exercises until she retired back to Pearl Harbor in 1971.

This short video provides an introduction to the USS Bowfin

The USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park in Pearl Harbor houses the now decommissioned sub. It is right next to the Arizona Memorial Visitor Center and offers tours for a separate admission fee. The Bowfin itself is a National Historic Landmark and is on the National Register of Historic Places, but the museum is not part of the National Memorial next door.

 USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park
The Waterfront Memorial is dedicated to the 52 submarines and more than 3,600 officers and crewmen lost during World War II.
An interesting look at one of the museum’s artifacts.

Location: 11 Arizona Memorial Dr, Honolulu, HI 96818
Designation: National Historic Landmark
Date Designated/Established: January 14, 1986
Date of my visit: April 20, 2019

12 thoughts on “USS Bowfin NHL: National Submarine Day

  1. I once toured a WWII submarine in San Francisco. Not until one shimmies down those narrow stairways and halls, sees the bunks, does one understand the unique challenges of duty on a submarine.

  2. This was a great post and had meaning for me because we went through the museum about ten years ago when we were visiting my brother and his wife who were stationed at the Naval Base at Pearl Harbor. He was then the skipper or captain of the USS Spadefish – a nuclear submarine. He had an interesting career surfacing twice through the ice at the North Pole and before he went through nuclear power school, he was a hardhat diver and the skipper of a submarine rescue vessel that made a dive to over 20,000 feet under off the coast of Guatemala.

    He was able to get us a tour of the Spadefish. The length of the nuclear boats are astounding when compared to the old WW II diesel subs, but notwithstanding the more spacious environment, it’s still cramped when fully loaded for their six-month rotation at sea. And most of it is spent underwater……

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