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Ford Island is located in the middle of Pearl Harbor, Hawaiimarker. It is connected to the main island by the Ford Island Bridgemarker. Before the bridge was built, Ford Island could only be reached by a ferry boat which ran at hourly intervals for cars and foot passengers. The island houses several naval facilities. It also has four main groups of military housing: Nob Hill, Luke Field, Kamehameha Loop, and Battleship Cove. The United States Census Bureau defines Ford Island as Block 9014, Block Group 9, Census Tract 81 of Honolulu County, Hawaiimarker. The island officially has 1.83 km² (0.707 sq mi) of land and a population of 368 persons as of the 2000 census.


Ancient Hawaiians called the island Mokuumeume—the isle of attraction. It is currently named after Dr. Seth Ford, a Boston physician who practiced medicine at the Hawaiian Insane Asylum and the U.S. Marine Hospital from 1861–1866.

Hangar and planes burning on NAS Ford Island during the Pearl Harbor attack
Ford died, the island was sold to the Honolulu Plantation. The U.S. Army purchased it during World War I for $236,000, and stationed the 6th Aero Squadron there on September 25, 1918. On April 29, 1919, the field was named Luke Fieldmarker, in memory of 2nd Lt. Frank Luke. It was transferred to the Navy in 1932. At the height of World War II more than 40,000 people lived and worked on the 450 acre (183 ha) island. The island was in the center of the Attack on Pearl Harbormarker, because of the battleship moorings surrounding the island.

From the 1940s through the 1990s, Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and George H. W. Bush have been guests at Ford Island.

The naval station was decommissioned as a separate command in 1962 and placed under Naval Base Pearl Harbor control, but the former naval air station and airfield on Ford Island remained an uncontrolled naval auxiliary landing field for both military helicopters and military flying club aircraft through the late 1990s. The island was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1964, and was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1976.

Several motion pictures were filmed on Ford Island, including In Harm's Way starring John Wayne, Tora Tora Tora, and the 2001 Michael Bay picture Pearl Harbor.

Before the Admiral Clarey Bridgemarker was opened in 1998, transportation to and from Ford Island was by ferryboat. Tourists were unable to visit the island without a military ID or being invited by a resident. Now, civilians are able to visit the USS Missourimarker and Pacific Aviation Museum there.


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Ford Island is the home of the USS Missouri, site of the Japanese surrender in WWII, and was recalled into active duty for the Gulf War.


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