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tv   American Artifacts Admiral Nimitz World War II in the Pacific  CSPAN  May 5, 2019 6:00pm-6:16pm EDT

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announcer: our cities tour staff recently traveled to palo alto, california, to learn about its rich history. to watch more video from palo alto and other stops on our tour, visit you are watching american history tv every weekend all weekend on c-span3. announcer: each week, american artefacts takes you to museums and historic places to learn about american history. nationaltour the museum of pacific lower in fredericksburg, texas, to learn about admiral nimitz, commander of the u.s. pacific fleet during world war ii. we also see a japanese submarine used during the pearl harbor attack, and american torpedo a u.s. flag's own by prisoners of war. often asked why a
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museum dedicated to the pacific war is landlocked in texas. the answer is simple. admiral nimitz was born in fredericksburg. we are standing in a building his grandfather built in the 1800s. by localas approached businessman who wanted to open a museum in his offer, he originally declined the offer. as1965, he finally agreed, long as the museum was made about the men and women who served under him and not about him. sadly, he died. we have the flag that draped his coffin during his funeral. almost one year after his death, the museum opened here in fredericksburg. now we are going to go to the george w. bush gallery and look at some artifacts that show we are true to the mission of making this about the men and
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women who served under admiral nimitz and not just about admiral nimitz. welcome to the national museum of the pacific war in fredericksburg, texas, the only museum in the continental united states dedicated to telling the human story of the war in the pacific. in here, we tell the story of world war ii in the pacific through the eyes of the men and women who fought that war. when america was attacked at pearl harbor, america was not prepared for war. behind me, you will see a photo of pearl harbor right before the attack. this was one of five midget submarines used by the japanese in the attack on pearl harbor. this is one of the five midget subs the japanese used in the attack on pearl harbor. it was piloted by a two man crew and has two torpedoes at the
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front. the great thing about these was they could come into the shallow depth of the harbor, they could come in before the wind got back up, get in, launch a torpedo, and hope to get back out before they were noticed. this one, however, did not quite accomplish that mission. inside here it was battery-powered. about 120 degrees on average. they were hitting reefs, hitting sandbars, and that jarred the batteries loose, which cause the release of the pilot inusing the copilot to go in and out of consciousness. the pilot and copilot exited through the top hatch inside. the copilot drowned in his attempt to get to shore, and the pilot made it to shore and passed out. was he woke up, he surrounded by troops and became the first american prisoner of war in world war ii.
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submarine was a new technology to the united states. we didn't have anything with this capability in our arsenal. of howanother example unprepared the u.s. was for world war ii. next, we will look at a comparison of what a u.s. summary would've had compared to the japanese in technology. from this picture, you can see inside a u.s. marine. moreu can tell, it's a lot than two people, but the layout is the same. six torpedo ports at the front, the center how to control room, a galley kitchen and living quarters for the crew, which then led back into the engine rooms, much larger than the 1819 japanese midget sub. this is the number two torpedo door for the uss seahorse. this would've been on the inside. the crew would open the hatch and raise the fire. what you see here is what you
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see a lot on the sides of airplanes. every time a torpedo from the number two hatch sunk a japanese ship, the crew painted a japanese flag to keep track. museum, we have over 900 artifacts on display. one of our prized possessions is the door of the uss arizona. here you can see where the ship set in the water and the oil stains the metal. here is the whole that welders hole that welders cut to look for survivors. admiral nimitz originally did not want to command the pacific fleet. there were a handful of admirals he felt were more qualified to take command. fdr eventually called him and said get your ass to pearl harbor and get the job done. we think admiral nimitz was chosen by fdr for his leadership style and the kind of person he
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was, humble, down to earth. i think fdr saw that as a huge perk after such a massive blow to the u.s. navy and u.s. fleet, that that was the kind of leader who would take the pacific to victory. taking admiral nimitz command of the pacific fleet. this is one of the very last ship's available for something like this. keep in mind, this was not even a month after the attack on pearl harbor. submariner,tz was a and he always saw himself as one. taking command of the pacific fleet aboard a submarine i think said something about the man, his leadership, and his ties to the summaries of the navy. it's important to point out that during the attack on pearl japanese had a summering base and submarines ended up being a huge weapon
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during the pacific war. tank that wasart commanded by the australians on the island of new guinea. on christmas eve of 1942, this tank took a direct round from a japanese antiaircraft gun right here through what would have been the a driver gunner .osition this gunner was instantly killed in the tank commander was telling his story with this exhibit. this knocks the tank completely out of position. it hit with such an impact, his ped.h stop he and his gunner were able to crawl out through the hole and survive. his legs were very badly mangled but he lived out the rest of his life after world war ii. have 5000e museum, we
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oral histories on collection from people who lived through world war ii. that brings this exhibit a little more to life, seeing the tank, hearing the story from the man who commanded the tank and survived the attack. [indiscernible] >> another unique piece of the exhibit is a japanese gun that took the tank out. it's right down this hallway and we are going to see that next. now we are at the japanese three inch gun, which is the same gun that took out the tank. this was an antiaircraft gun.
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go the fact the barrel can five degrees below or above also made it great for taking out tanks like the m3 stuart. from here, we are going to look at one of the more unique artifacts. 89 of these went into service in 1943 before production was canceled. this is the only one on display in the world out of three left in existence that we know of. a fighter used for forward offensive maneuvers were airstrips available. as you can imagine, putting three buoys at the bottom of the plane hindered its capabilities. you can see up in the wings, to 20 millimeter guns, one on each wing. there are also 27 millimeter machine gums. this is a single pilot aircraft. from here, we are going to go down to the pacific combat zone
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and check in with the torpedo bomber. this is similar to the plane george bush flew in world war ii. this is a much larger aircraft compared to the one we just saw. this was the largest aircraft the u.s. had in its fleet. you had the pilot, the tailgunner, and a radioman on the crew. as you can see below, it can carry one torpedo or multiple 200 or 500 pound bombs. this is a torpedo bomber, so it could drop torpedoes or bomb from heights up to 30,000 feet. wings could fold up, allowing for more to be carried on top. inside the wing, you can see where the wheels would tuck up into this wing for hydraulic lift. victory exhibit of
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the george h w bush gallery. behind me is probably my favorite artifact that we have on display, the p.o.w. flag. were ordered to destroy the flag. they took the stars off the american flag and hid them on their person. they spent the next 42 months as factories, andin in p.o.w. camps. if the stars had been found, that would have been an automatic death sentence for any three or all three individuals. one morning they woke up and the japanese had left the pow camp, locked the gate behind them, and the americans and allies were stuck fending for themselves. using a sewing machine, rusty nail and some thread, and the parachute from the supply drop, they so this american flag back thisher, -- they sewed
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american flag back together and when the camp was freed, this flag was flying over it. this is what admiral nimitz said -- meant when he said he didn't want this to be about him but the men and women who served. this.etter example than it really speaks to the characteristics of the greatest generation. watch thisyou can and other american artifacts programs by visiting our website, announcer: this weekend on "the presidency," the author talks about abraham lincoln's sense of humor. a preview. >> as president, he used stories to drive home political arguments. when major general john pope telegraphed that he had captured 5000 confederates, the cabinet
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.sked the president that reminds me of an old woman who was ill. the next morning, the doctor found her fresh and well, getting breakfast. she confirmed the medicine had worked. he inquired.ments 142, she replied. i am serious, how many? 142. >> madam, i must know. i tell you, 142. 140 of them wind. [laughter] lincoln closed the discussion, i pope's captures are 140 of them wind. finding himself with the support of only one member of the
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cabinet during a critical phase when britain threatened war over ae union navy with seizure of ship, he recalled a drunk -- there were lots of drunks in lincoln's stories. he recalled the drunk who strayed and fell asleep in a front row. he slumbered on as a revivalist asked who was on the lord's side. the congregation's bonded by rising and mass. , whothe preacher inquired was on the side of the devil, the sleeper stirred. seeing the minister on his feet, he stood up. i don't exactly understand the question, he said, but i will stand by you parse until the last. but it seems to me why are -- parson until the last. but it seems to me we are in a hopeless minority. are watchingu
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american history tv, only on c-span3. announcer next, elizabeth todd : breland talks about her book "a political education: black politics and education reform in chicago since the 1960s," she describes the overcrowding in african american neighborhood schools and share stories of parents and teachers who pushed for better conditions. american history tv recorded this 15 minute interview at the annual american historical association meeting in chicago. >> professor elizabeth todd breland, your book, "a political education: black politics and education reform in chicago since 1960," what is the premise behind the book and what did you learn? elizabeth: the premise behind the book is that, in the early 2000, so much of the conversation around education reform was dominated by nonprofit groups, philanthropists, big-city mayors, advocacy organizations,


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