How Much Do You Know About Pearl Harbor History?

By: Allie T.
Image: YouTube

About This Quiz

Bombs, thousands of deaths, and another World War; the attack on Pearl Harbor was one of the most terrorizing events in the history of the United States. How much do you know about the attack, though? 

When bombs were dropped on Pearl Harbor, the United States was forced into another war that many people around the country desperately wanted to stay out of. After all, American foreign policy to that point had been one of isolationism, deciding to focus on American interest in the Western Hemisphere instead of conflicts across the ocean. 

With such an attack, however, a response was not only needed but required, and only a day after the attack, the United States would be launched headfirst into another global conflict with serious ramifications for every country involved. 

Do the events of World War II interest you? What about the attack that forced the United States to join? Can you remember all of the vital details that only a true historian would know? If so, then you should test your knowledge with this quiz!

This quiz isn't for anyone, however, and you'd better be ready for the challenge before you begin. If you think you're ready, though, take this quiz and prove it! 

What country attacked Pearl Harbor in the 1940s?

Japan is an island in the Pacific Ocean. It's capital is Tokyo.

The Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on __________.

It was a surprise attack on a Sunday. The Japanese chose Sunday, figuring that the U.S. would be less prepared for a day of attack because it was a favorite day to attend church.

The attack on Pearl Harbor was the Japanese retaliating against the U.S. _______________.

The embargo kept the Japanese from receiving important items, such as steel and fuel for planes. Japan wanted more territory and the U.S. did not agree.

The Japanese did not attack the ___________, which allowed the U.S. Navy to quickly get back on their feet.

The Japanese also left standing the repair facilities and the the submarine base.

What was the largest ship sunk at Pearl Harbor?

The USS Arizona was a Pennsylvania-class battleship, and it was the most significant ship loss of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The ship sank to the bottom of the harbor.

On November 26, 1941, the Japanese sent _______ aircraft carriers to Pearl Harbor.

Akagi, Hiryū, Kaga, Shōkaku, Sōryū, and Zuikaku left Japan with the intention of launching 408 aircrafts.

Who was the Japanese Admiral that led the attack on Pearl Harbor?

Isoroku Yamamoto was a Marshal Admiral of the Japanese Navy. He was the commander-in-chief of the Combined Fleet during World War II.

What company produced the engines for the Japanese fighter planes that is now a significant automobile company?

The Imperial Japanese Navy pilots flew the Mitsubishi A6M Zero. Mitsubishi used forced labor to build its products.

How many U.S. ships were a total loss?

Out of the twenty-one ships that were hit, only three battleships: Arizona, Oklahoma, and Utah were complete losses.

How many waves of attack did the Japanese launch on the U.S?

The first wave had 183 planes and targeted Oahu. The second wave had 171 planes.

Pearl Harbor was located on what Hawaiian Island?

The nickname for Oahu is "The Gathering Place." It is the 3rd largest Hawaiian island.

The ships in Battleship Row are named after _________.

The ships in Battleship Row were named after the following states: Arizona, California, Maryland, Nevada, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and West Virginia.

What sunken ship was turned into a Pearl Harbor memorial?

The USS Arizona Memorial was built in 1962 and has over two million visitors a year. The memorial floats over the USS Arizona and is only accessible by boat.

What was Battleship Row?

Battleship Row was created in 1919 when the Navy wanted to build a base and took the land/water from the Army Air Force. Because of its location in the middle of the harbor, it had the deepest place for ships to maneuver.

How many Americans died in the attack on Pearl Harbor?

With the 2,403 dead, there were 1,178 wounded. The Americans who died or were injured during the attack were considered to be non-combatants as there was no declaration of war yet.

___________ still leaks from the USS Arizona.

The USS Arizona originally had 1.5 million gallons of fuel. Seventy years later 500,000 gallons still slowly leaks from the ship.

Who was the President of the United States when Pearl Harbor was attacked?

Franklin D. Roosevelt, also known as FDR ,was the 32nd President of the United States. He was president from 1933 until his death in 1945.

What code word was used by the Japanese?

In English it means “I have succeeded in the surprise attack.”

Because of the attack on Pearl Harbor, President Roosevelt signed an executive order putting Japanese-Americans into ______________.

The forced relocation of Japanese-Americans lasted from February 1942 - March 1946. 110,000 to 120,000 Americans were relocated to camps on the west coast.

The attack on Pearl Harbor forced the U.S. to declare war on Japan on what date?

President Roosevelt asked Congress to declare war on Japan in the most memorable speech he would ever give. In the speech, he called Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor a “deliberate deception."

Who uttered the now famous phrase, "a date which will live in infamy?"

"A date which will live in infamy," was said on December 7, 1941. President Roosevelt said that line in his speech to Congress on December 8th, asking for a declaration of war against Japan.

Japan’s allies,____________, declared war on the United States on December 11th.

Germany, Italy, and Japan were the three principle players in the Axis alliance.

Which of the U.S. Battleships was not at Pearl Harbor at the time of the attack?

The USS Colorado was in service from 1923 to 1947. She won seven battle stars for her service. In the end, she was sold for scrap.

What did the U.S. servicemen call the Japanese planes?

They were identified as "meatballs" because of the Rising Sun, a large, red circle, on the side of Japanese planes.

How many servicemen died aboard the USS Arizona?

Most of the deaths came when a 16-inch shell hit the Arizona's front magazine. At the time of the attack, the Arizona had a band on deck who perished instantly.

The Japanese called the attack on Pearl Harbor, Operation __________.

They called it Operation H with the "H" standing for Hawaii. It was later changed to Operation Z.

The Japanese attacked __________ right after Pearl Harbor.

The Japanese had control of The Philippines from 1942 to 1945. The second most destroyed city during WWII was Manila.

After being hit by torpedoes, the battleship ___________ was listed so badly that it turned upside down.

It took several torpedoes to capsize the USS Oklahoma, with the fatal torpedo hitting the ship's hull.

Injured Japanese planes that could not make it back to the carriers were to land on the island of __________.

Niihau was only a thirty-minute flight from Pearl Harbor. The inhabitants of the island had no phones or radios, so were clueless about what was happening over on Oahu.

When did Imperial Japan surrender?

Japan announced their surrender on August 15, 1945, but didn't sign the treaty until September 2, 1945. This brought the horror of World War II to a close.

During the Tokyo Trials, the attack on Pearl Harbor was considered a__________.

It was determined at the Tokyo Trials that the attack was a war crime because it happened without a deceleration of war and happened without an explicit warning.

What was the name of the captured Japanese serviceman?

Kazuo was caught when his disabled submarine did not explode and he swam out to see what went wrong. Upon inspection, he became unconscious and was captured by David Akui.

What time did the Japanese attack?

The attack on the base happened at 7:48 am Hawaiian Time.

What does a Minelayer do?

The Japanese destroyed one Minelayer in the attack on Pearl Harbor.

In the attack, the Japanese lost five _______ submarines.

A midget or mini submarine is any sub under 150 tons. The Type A Kō-hyōteki-class mini sub was used in the attack.

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