Earlier this week, the State of Missouri, renewed its ties with the iconic USS Missouri or 'Mighty Mo' and its lasting legacy on Battleship Row in Pearl Harbor with a historic donation to the Battleship Missouri Memorial.
At a private ceremony in the ship’s Captain’s Cabin, dignitaries from the State of Missouri presented an original silver place setting used by officers aboard the USS Missouri after World War II.
Representatives from Missouri included Sam Bushman, the Presiding Commissioner of Cole County, Anthony Bamvakais, the Military Executive for the Missouri National Guard Office of the Adjutant General and Hal Dulle, the Chair of the USS Jefferson City Submarine Committee.
"We brought this silver home to Missouri after the ship's decommissioning in 1992, and now, 25 years later, we are delighted to come full circle and bring this important piece of history back to be displayed at Pearl Harbor,” said Bushman.
In 1947, Missouri appropriated $10,000 for the creation of the 281-piece silver set. It was delivered to the ship while it was docked in Norfolk, Virginia in 1948. Previously housed in the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum, the silver place setting includes sixteen individual pieces, including forks, knives, spoons, plates, a goblet and a salt and pepper shaker. It will be displayed in a custom display case in the Wardroom of the USS Missouri.
Accepting the State of Missouri’s donation on behalf of the Battleship Missouri Memorial were Tim Guard, Chairman of the Board, and Michael Carr, President and CEO of the USS Missouri Memorial Association, the organization charged with caring for the Mighty Mo in Pearl Harbor and sharing the story of its history-making achievements with visitors from around the world.
"Everyone here at the Battleship Missouri Memorial expresses their profound appreciation to the State of Missouri for bringing this fabulous artifact with a rich and marvelous history back aboard the USS Missouri,” said Guard.
"Our mission is to preserve the Battleship Missouri and share her story and place in history. The story behind this silver is one we are excited to be able to share with visitors worldwide,” added Carr.
Having the retired USS Missouri, site for the end of World War II on September 2, 1945, being berthed in Pearl Harbor is especially appropriate as the gigantic battleship rests bow-to-bow to the sunken USS Arizona, the eternal symbol of America’s entry into the war.