Description - Port Chicago Naval Magazine was dedicated as a national memorial to honor the courage and commitment of the 320 Sailors, Marines, Coast Guardsmen, Merchant Mariners, and workers killed and injured there during World War II. It recognizes the critical role they and the survivors of the explosion played in winning the war in the Pacific. The explosion that occurred on July 17, 1944, resulted in the largest domestic loss of life during World War II. Port Chicago was dedicated in 1994 by the survivors of that tragic incident. The tragedy and its aftermath was a catalyst -- one of many that helped persuade the U.S. Navy and military establishment to begin the long journey on the road to racial justice and equality following WWII.
- Visitors must call to schedule a visit of Port Chicago. The National Memorial includes wayside exhibits, artifacts a memorial, a chapel and a museum.
Recreation - Free, escorted 2-hour visits are available by appointment only. The visit includes free transportation and a guided tour. Allow two weeks to process a request. For more information or to make tour reservations, call the park at the number listed below.
Additional activities at Port Chicago include bird watching and wildlife viewing.
Climate - The inland riverfront climate tends to be windy and warm. Months of July, August and September are especially warm, with the best weather in the Spring. Comfortable attire is suggested. Appropriate civilian or military attire is requested when visiting the memorial and chapel.
Port Chicago is located at the eastern edge of the San Francisco Bay Area. From Oakland/Berkeley, take Highway 24 east to Walnut Creek. Merge onto Interstate 680 north, towards Sacramento. Merge onto Highway 242 north to Concord. Exit Port Chicago Highway north to the Concord Naval Weapons Station.
From Sacramento, take Interstate 80 west. Exit onto Interstate 680 south to Martinez. Exit onto Highway 4 east to Concord. Exit onto Port Chicago Highway north to the Concord Naval Weapons Station.