The U.S.S. Arizona was a Pennsylvania-class ship built by the U.S. Navy and commissioned in the second decade of the 20th century. The Arizona remained stateside in World War I, and around 1919 was transferred to the Pacific fleet. Modernized between 1929 and 1931, the Arizona was transferred to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii in 1940 along with the rest of the Pacific fleet.
On December 7, 1941, as part of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the Arizona was bombed, killing 1,177 officers and crewmen. Only 335 of the officers and crew assigned to the Arizona survived the day, some of those because they were not present on the ship. Among the dead were 23 sets of brothers; the military discouraged brothers from serving on the same ship after the bombing of the Arizona.
Of the bombs dropped on the Arizona, there were four direct hits, and three near-misses. The last bomb, dropped at 8:06 AM detonated the ship’s ammunition magazines, although the exact order of the detonation remains unknown.
The ship sank in Pearl Harbor. Unlike many of the other ships bombed that day, the Arizona could not be significantly salvaged. The wreckage remains in Pearl Harbor. While the ship has been decommissioned, and is under the control of the National Park Service, it remains the property of the U.S. Navy and retains the rights to fly the U.S. flag in perpetuity. Portions of the ship have been removed and placed as memorials at other sites, and survivors of the Arizona have been allowed to be interred in the wreckage after cremation.
The attack on Pearl Harbor was a defining moment in U.S. history and the history of World War II. As intended, the attack brought the U.S. into World War II, leading to an eventual Allied victory over the Axis powers, including Germany and Japan.