All posts tagged Honolulu

[Tuttle took care to paint the background scene for readers back home. The details he included are missing in other histories, the ones about presidents and generals.]

Today I wanted to see some of the island myself before I saw more of the military side. I looked for a ride over to the famous Waikiki beach a bit to the east of downtown Honolulu and Pearl Harbor. A poster of bus routes reminds riders that priority should be given to military personnel and civilian war workers going about their needful business. Some people tell me that my work is important to the war effort, but I still looked around for busier looking riders before getting on a bus.

One errand they ran me through yesterday was to change out some of my currency for “Hawaiian” money. Wary of Japanese invasion, which seemed inevitable just three years ago, the government called in all the paper money from people in Hawaii so that it couldn’t fall into enemy hands. But with a half million inhabitants and likely millions of servicemen and support people about to be moving in, there was a need for replacement cash, pronto.

The expedient-if-inelegant solution was to stamp “HAWAII” on the front and back of millions of existing bank notes. I suppose a lot of the marked notes will become souvenirs someday. Right now mine is marked for lunch money and bus fare.

Honolulu bus map, 1945