I spent a year on Midway Island, from mid-1961 to mid-1962. To be honest, there was a lot about Midway that I didn't appreciate at age 23... memories that have since become precious because they cannot be re-experienced, by me or thousands of others who have similar memories. |
Midway is now essentially gone to humans, thanks to radical environmental policies of our Fish and Wildlife Agency. For some time, a cooperative effort existed between that agency and the Midway Phoenix Corporation from Georgia, to turn Midway into a controlled, profitable tourist attraction. Midway Phoenix poured millions of dollars into the effort, and it became clear that their effort was successful, only to have that success be thwarted by ridiculous FWS policies. In frustration, Midway Phoenix eventually swallowed their losses and pulled out.
FWS is destroying Midway, trying to "restore" it to it's pre-human condition. Sites such as this one, and many others, will allow you to see what has been lost.
|During the Battle of Midway, in 1942, Eastern Island was the developed island of the two... |
the one with airstrips the Japanese wanted. Later, Sand Island became the primary Naval Base.
Sand Island, 1960's
Eastern Island, Nov.'41
Eastern Island, 1944
Midway Islands in WWII|
Nineteen years before I went to Midway, the Battle of Midway Island took place. Considered the turning point of the war against Japan, that battle involved serious destruction of Japan's carrier fleet, at sea, near Midway Island. The forces of Midway Island had significant involvement leading to that battle, and Japan's intent was to capture Midway Island as a forward naval base. Filmmaker John Ford was on Midway during the attack, was knocked unconscious and injured, but pulled together this film of the actual action and aftermath. More details about the film are available at Big Hollywood
If you want to know what really happened during the Battle of Midway, I highly recommend the book "Shattered Sword", The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway, by Parshall and Tully. The book is based on records never examined before, and corrects many false stories about the battle.
|Here is an audio recording of a war news broadcast just after the Battle of Midway, with statements by several of the Marine airmen from Midway, and a brief report that Admiral Nimitz has claimed a major sea victory.|
A variety of other Midway sites (updated 12/10/2009)
Past Residents of Midway Island
Good Wikipedia site on Midway Island
Dave Perkins' photo site 1965-66
Eric Bollin's photograph collection 1967
Gary Edstrom's Midway Island Home Page
Mike Daak's site - with recent photos of Midway
Willy Victor website
Naval Security Group Midway Island Veterans E-mail List
Midway Islands' Undaunted Defenders
Naval Historical Center - Battle of Midway
Navy Art Collection
Japanese attack on Midway Island
Naval Historial Center Index to Battle of Midway
Birds of Midway Island