Saipan is almost a forgotten place today. Only people with the curiosity for travel or history come by the name. The islands have remained quiet and remote for the average person. But history shows that they were a logistic and tactical focal point in the Pacific Theater of WWII.
Battles raged between USA and Japan in the waters and islands of the area. Ultimately, Saipan was home to one of the bloodiest battles of the war (more than 43,000 deaths!). Neighboring island (Tinian) became the world's busiest airport (at the time) since it was the base for all Asian raids and USAF missions. That was the airport that the infamous Enola Gay departed from. The historical accounts of Saipan can be witnessed at many of the tourist sites, such as:
North end of the island: Last Command Post, Banzai Cliff, Suicide Cliff
Central island: Japanese Hospital, Sugar King Park, Japanese Jail
Top of the island: placards and displays on top of Mt. Tapochao
South end of island: several bunkers, shelters, and memorials
But best source of information is the American WWII Museum and Memorial Park:
Just north of the Hyatt Hotel, in Garapan.
Entry is free of charge until 5pm. Closed Mondays, Tuesdays and holidays.