Mammoth Cave National Park was created in 1941. Located in central Kentucky, the park encompasses almost 53,000 acres. Mammoth Cave is the longest cave system in the world. More than 400 miles of cave trails have been mapped. Children could visit the park’s website at: http://www.nps.gov/maca.
Mount Rushmore was completed in 1941. The project, depicting likenesses of George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, and Theodore Roosevelt, began on October 3, 1927. Nearly three million people visit it each year. Children could visit the park’s website at: http://www.nps.gov/moru/.
Thanksgiving Day was celebrated nationally for the first time in 1789. President Washington issued a proclamation declaring that the day should be one of prayer and thanksgiving. Children could research what the first Thanksgiving meal was. How does it compare to what they eat on the holiday today? In 1863 President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed that Thanksgiving would be celebrated on the last Thursday in November. In 1941 Congress passed a resolution changing Thanksgiving to the fourth Thursday in November. Children can read about “The Year We Had Two Thanksgivings” at: Two Thanksgivings.
Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, was attacked by the Japanese in 1941. President Roosevelt called the day “a date that will live in infamy.” The Japanese airplanes attacked early in the morning. They destroyed almost the entire Pacific Fleet and approximately 200 airplanes. Almost 3,000 people were killed in the hour-long attack. This event brought about America’s entrance into World War II. Children can learn more about the bombing of Pearl Harbor at: Pearl Harbor.
United States declared war against Japan and thus entered World War II in 1941. The declaration of war was a reaction to the December 7th bombing of Pearl Harbor. Approximately 16 million people fought in the war or served as support for the military. Over 400,000 people died in action. Almost everyone who remained in America supported the war effort through rationing, buying war bonds, sending packages overseas, and collecting metals that could be used for military purposes. World War II ended in 1945. Children could understand more about the war by reading World War II Days: Discover the Past with Exciting Projects, Games, Activities, and Recipes by David C. King and Cheryl Kirk Noll.
National Gallery of Art opened in 1941 in Washington, DC. President Franklin Roosevelt officiated at the opening. The museum was created in 1937 when a number of wealthy art collects donated many of their acquisitions to become the core of the exhibits. It has a fine collection of artwork, ranging from the medieval period to the present. Children could visit the Internet site, especially the online tours, at: http://www.nga.gov. They could also pretend to be curators for the National Gallery of Art and decide which works of art to add to the collection. They could also view the amazing children’s portion of the website at: NGA Kids.
Fort Raleigh National Historic Site was established in 1941. Located in Dare County, North Carolina, the site protects Roanoke Colony, the first English settlement in North America. The settlers, funded by Sir Walter Raleigh, arrived in 1587. However, by 1590 no settlers could be found. The area became the “Lost Colony.” Children could learn more at: https://www.nps.gov/fora/index.htm.