11 Most Endangered Historic Places

Ford Island at Pearl Harbor

Year Listed: 2001
Location: Hawaii
Threat: Development

One of 19 bungalows that are being renovated for military housing on Ford Island's Nob Hill in Hawaii

Credit: Forest City Military Communities


Ford Island at Pearl Harbor, Honolulu, Hawaii (Listed in 2001): Ford Island is the centerpiece of the Pearl Harbor National Historic Landmark District. Remnants of bomb craters and signs of the Japanese aircraft's strafing runs are still visible on the island. The original airfield, air tower, World War II hangars, a collection of bungalows, officers' housing, and landscaping with mature Banyan trees remain on the site. In 1999 the National Trust and the Historic Hawaii Foundation learned that the Navy planned to construct a major housing complex, a festival market place, and recreational marina on Ford Island. Despite the concerns raised by preservation organizations, the Navy is moving forward on several major development initiatives for Ford Island, which will dramatically change the historic character of the island. While the Navy has modified its plans somewhat-for example, by eliminating the festival marketplace and marina-the historic character of large portions of Ford Island is still threatened by insensitive development, including the construction of hundreds of tract houses, radical re-grading, removal of large expanses of concrete from historic aviation areas, and partial or total destruction of features such as compass roses. The historic bungalows featured in the 2001 listing are on the verge of collapse due to neglect, and the mast of the USS Oklahoma, pulled from the harbor in 2005, lies rusting on the shore, completely exposed and unprotected by the Navy. The National Trust is continuing to work with the Navy in an effort to reduce and mitigate the damage from the new development.