Although it remains the worst disaster in American naval history, a crushing defeat that has surely lived up to President Roosevelt's designation of "a day which will lie\ve in infamy," the Japanese attack on the American base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, also feature a myriad of examples of the courage, tenacity, and sacrifice which mark the highest ideals of the United States Navy.  This talk is being presented in recognition of Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day and will highlight some of the greatest examples of courage under fire during the infamous attack on December 7, 1941.   It also looks at the 15 men who were awarded the Medal of Honor for their service on that day.   Their examples, along with many thousands of their shipmates, highlight the spirit that later enabled the Navy to overcome its losses and defeat the Japanese war machine. 

Dr. Thomas Sheppard holds a doctorate in military history from the University of North Carolina.  He currently works in the Public History and Education section of the Naval History and Heritage Command, Washington, D.C., where his work includes co-editing a documentary history of the U.S. Navy in World War I and an essay on the Navy's response to the influenza pandemic of 1918. 

Brown Bag Briefs is a series of one-hour talks on the third Wednesday of every month.  Topics are related to U.S. naval history, museum collection objects, art, technological achievement, and people.  Occasionally, the program may be held on a different day to coincide with special observances.  Check our website for the most updated listing. 

This is a live webinar.   To register for the program, send an email to

You will be sent a link to YouTube, which will allow you to join the program live.  

Thomas Sheppard, Ph.D