Catalina Island News

New Special Exhibition Explores Island's Role in WWII

Catalina Island Museum

The Catalina Island Museum's newest special exhibition From Resort Community to Military Station: Catalina During World War II opens Friday, July 1. Curated by Jeannine Pedersen, this temporary exhibit examines the ways in which the Island was transformed as a result of the War. This exhibit will be the first in the Museum's new special exhibition gallery, and will remain up through the end of the year. Admission to From Resort Community to Military Station is included in the Museum's general admission fee.

Between 1942 and 1945 four different branches of the Military were stationed on the Island.  From Avalon to the Isthmus, service men trained around the clock, preparing to serve their country.  Catalina was designated a Federal Military Zone and access to the Island was heavily restricted.  Steamship service was cancelled and tourism ceased; many locals left the Island for the duration.  Following the hostilities, Catalina would never be the same again.

This exhibit explores the Island's role in World War II history and the impact of the War on the community.  Featuring personal recollections from both service men and Islanders, the exhibit gives insight as to what wartime Catalina was like for solider and civilian alike.

In honor of those who lived and/or served on the Island during WWII, the Museum will offer special extended opening hours July Fourth weekend.  On Saturday, July 2 and Sunday, July 3, the Museum will remain open until 7:00 p.m.

To celebrate the opening of our new gallery space, and the launch of the temporary exhibition From Resort Community to Military Station: Catalina During World War II, the Museum will host a special members-only wine and hors d'houevres reception on Saturday, July 8, 2005 at 6:00 p.m. followed by a free public open house from 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.