Liberation Day in Guam

Liberation Day in Guam is observed on July 21st most years, but if that date happens to fall on a Sunday, then the holiday is moved to the following Monday. This holiday remembers the start of the Battle of Guam. This battle started in 1944 and led to the liberation of the island during WWII.

Guam has been a U.S territory since the Spanish-American War, but Japan invaded Guam just a few days after they attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941. The Japanese would hold the island before the United States would launch an assault to liberate the island on July 21st, 1944. This battle would last until August 10th and it was only after the battle was won that Guam was liberated.

The History Of Liberation Day In Guam

After the Spanish-American War, Guam would become a territory of the United States in December of 1898 after Spain ceded it to the U.S. The rest of the Mariana would be sold to Germany under the German-Spanish Treaty of 1899.

Guam would remain a territory of the U.S until World War II. After the Japanese launched a surprise attack against the U.S Naval Base at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, they then launch an invasion of Guam a few days later. In June of 1942, the U.S won a huge victory at the Battle of Midway, and this set the stage for them to launch a campaign to liberate Guam. They launched this campaign on July 21, 1944, and it would take until August 10, 1944, for the U.S to liberate the island. Liberation Day is on the same day as the beginning of the island’s liberation campaign.

Observing Liberation Day In Guam

Guam Liberation festivities include a summer carnival, a parade that occurs on Marine Corps Drive in Hagåtña (a parade that can stretch for over a mile), and even a “Queen Contest.” Some people spend the day making floats for the parade, and other people simply sit back and take it all in.

Where is it celebrated?
Guam (Public holiday)
When is it?
This year (2023)
July 21 Friday
Next year (2024)
July 21 Sunday
Last year (2022)
July 21 Thursday