Eighty years ago in December 1941, US President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Congress declared war on the Empire of Japan, Italy, and Nazi Germany. This action followed the December 7 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor Naval Base in Hawaii, which was a day, the president said, that will live in infamy.
Years before entering the war, the United States prepared to defend democracy, and Florida was at the forefront. Floridians stepped onto the national stage to serve their country in military and diplomatic positions. New facilities for land and naval military operations were developed in the state, and men and women throughout the nation came to Florida to train. These mobilization efforts forever changed the state—economically, socially, and politically.
Visit the Florida Historic Capitol Museum to learn more about Florida’s historic Rendezvous with Destiny. Developed in partnership with Camp Blanding Museum and The Institute on World War II and the Human Experience at Florida State University, this exhibit and programming share the stories of the pre-war period and entrance into World War II from the perspective of those who experienced it—the Floridians defending America on the front lines and back home.
Join us at the Florida Historic Capitol Museum as we officially open the new temporary exhibit Rendezvous with Destiny: Florida and WWII. Hear from Dr. Sidney Pash, professor of history at Fayetteville State University, who will discuss American-Japanese relations from 1937 to 1941. Marking the eightieth anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, Dr. Pash will shed light on the ultimately failed American attempt to peacefully contain Japanese expansion following the start of the Sino-Japanese War in July 1937.
Funding for the following programs was provided through a grant from Florida Humanities with funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in these programs do not necessarily represent those of Florida Humanities or the National Endowment for the Humanities.