After the bombing of Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, Among the approximately 20,000 civil defense workers, there were 600 African Americans men and women who were sent by the Department of Defense to rebuild the Naval Yard. Ernest Golden, age 19 at the time was among this group. Blacks lived in segregated housing CHA 3, three streets beginning at the present site: Trinity Missionary Baptist Church in Ohana Nui Circle (sandwiched between Pearl Harbor housing and Hickam Airforce Base off Nimitz Highway back of Honolulu International Airport). Black military men lived in Quonset huts an area at Manana housing. Before CHA 3 was built, some civilian defense workers were housed in the old Kamehameha High School dormitories in the Kalihi area near Ft. Shafter.
The Quonset Hut above is the only remaining footprint that has significant historical value for preservation restoration to share with future generations. Keeping tract of the footprints about people of African descent in Hawaii and WWII Pacific Theater are an integral part of the work that the African American Diversity Cultural Center Hawaii (AADCCH), the ‘keepers of history’ must include undertake and document to educate the public and visitor about historical occurrences that have been swept under the rug so to speak. Its our obligation to do this work and anchor this history once and for all.
Funds are a necessary part of the work to be done by AADCCH. We need the help of the military all branches, congressional leaders from Hawaii, and community. Partnership and collaboration are the key ingredients to enable that the work at hand can be accomplished.
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Mahalo Nui Loa for Your Kokua! Board of Directors