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WWII Multimedia Timeline: December 7-8, 1941: Pearl Harbor



The New York Philharmonic Society
December 7, 1941, 3:03 pm EST
Based on Robert Trout's 1999 NPR story, it's possible that the December 7 1941 broadcast of The New York Philharmonic's concert was joined a few minutes late. As has already been discussed, many Americans incorrectly remember or believe that the initial attack announcement was made during this broadcast. If you've arrived at this page without having first read the CBS The World Today page, read that first.
This digital version of the Philharmonic broadcast is widely distributed. The most notable problem with it is that someone has attempted to alter history by clumsily inserting the 2:31 initial CBS announcement into this clip. Not only is this inaccurate, but the person who did it used the recreation splice fabricated for the production of the I Can Hear It Now history records in 1948. Actually, they used a clip from the 1964 CBS broadcast Farewell To Studio Nine, which ahistorically used the 1948 recreation in an erroneous description of how CBS broke the news (see The World Today page for more details). Nevertheless, some of the broadcast as presented here is accurate. There was at least one interruption of the Philharmonic to announce the sinking of an American lumber transport about 1300 miles from San Francisco, and at 3:35 p.m. EST, during the concert's intermission, Charles Daly updated listeners on Far Eastern news as known up to that time. He included a summary of the World News Today broadcast that had preceded the Philharmonic broadcast. A timeline of this entire clip, as widely distributed, is included below.
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Last modified July 15, 2012