YUSOSEN!

(A Type 1TM Wartime Standard Merchant Tanker underway)

IJN EIHO MARU:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2010-2016 Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.

Revision 3


1943:
Osaka. Laid down at Hitachi Zosen Sakurajima as a 5,068-ton Type 1TM Wartime Standard Merchant Tanker for Iino Kaiun, K.K.

June 1943:
Launched and named EIHO MARU.

31 July 1943:
Completed and requisitioned by the IJN as a supply (oil) ship attached to the Kure Naval District. Her homeport is Kure.

28 September 1943:
Departs Takamatsu and later that day arrives at Osaka. Undergoes engine repairs.

3 October 1943:
Departs Osaka.

4 October 1943:
Arrives at Tokuyama.

6 October 1943:
Departs Tokuyama.

7 November 1943:
Arrives at Singapore from Seletar.

11 November 1943:
At 1100, departs Singapore in Convoy No. 635 (Part 1) consisting of tanker EIHO MARU and cargo ships/transports RAKUYO, MANKO and TEIRITSU (ex-French LECONTE DE LISLE) MARUs without escort.

14 November 1943:
At 1030, arrives at St Jacques.

21 December 1943:
Departs Moji

26 December 1943:
Arrives at Takao.

29 December 1943:
Departs Takao.

E January 1944:
Released to her owners.

4 January 1944:
Arrives at St Jacques, Indochina.

12 January 1944:
Departs in convoy No.539 also consisting of TEIHOKU MARU (ex French PERSEE) and two unidentified merchant ships without escort.

15 January 1944:
Arrives at Singapore.

27 January 1944:
Departs Singapore in convoy HI-34 consisting of TARAKAN, EIHO and SARAWAK MARU's and three unidentified merchant ships escorted by kaibokan ETOROFU.

4 February 1944:
Arrives at Takao.

6 February 1944:
Departs Takao.

10 February 1944:
Arrives at Moji.

11 February 1944:
Arrives at Kobe.

13 February 1944:
Departs Kobe.

14 February 1944:
Arrives at Yokkaichi. Probably loads aviation gasoline.

17 February 1944:
Departs Yokkaichi.

23 February 1944:
At 0900 convoy HI-49 departs Moji for Singapore consisting of tankers KYOKUHO, ASASHIO and EIHO MARU and one unidentified merchant ship escorted by kaibokan SHIMUSHU and SADO.

28 February 1944:
At Takao. That same day, EIHO MARU is requisitioned again by the IJN.

5 March 1944:
Arrives at St Jacques.

7 March 1944:
Departs St Jacques.

11 March 1944:
At 1810, arrives at Singapore.

15 March 1944:
At 1000, EIHO MARU departs Singapore in convoy HI-50 consisting of tankers NANEI, MANEI and OKIKAWA MARUs and nine unidentified merchant ships escorted by destroyer SHIOKAZE and kaibokan SADO.

18 March 1944:
At 1600, arrives Cape St Jacques.

20 March 1944:
Registered in the Kure Naval District as an auxiliary transport (oil) and attached to the Kure Naval District under internal order No. 465. Her home port is Kure. That same day, at 1500, departs Cape St Jacques.

24 March 1944:
At 1900, arrives Manila.

27 March 1944:
At 1400, departs Manila.

30 March 1944:
At 1000, arrives Takao.

1 April 1944:
At 1600, departs Takao.

2 April 1944:
At 1700, arrives Mako.

4 April 1944:
At 1600, departs Mako.

8 April 1944:
At 1010, arrives at Moji.

9 April 1944:
Arrives at Shimonoseki.

20 April 1944:
At 0600, EIHO MARU departs Moji-Mutsure with kaibokan KURAHASHI, CD-10, CD-11 and CD-20 escorting convoy HI-59 consisting of tankers NIPPPO, OKIKAWA, MANEI (BANEI), OTORISAN and NIYO MARUs, cargo ship MANKO MARU and probably KINUGASA, NOSHIRO and TEIRITSU (ex-French LECONTE DE LISLE) MARUs and tanker NICHINAN MARU No. 2.

21 April 1944:
EIHO MARU and escorts KURAHASHI and CD-20 are detached.

22 April 1944:
Arrives at Ssu Chiao Shan anchorage.

26 April 1944:
Departs Ssu Chiao Shan anchorage.

28 April 1944:
KURAHASHI and CD-20 rejoin the convoy. EIHO MARU arrives at Takao.

29 April 1944:
Departs Takao.

2 May 1944:
Arrives at Manila.

5 May 1944:
Departs Manila, probably in an unidentified convoy with tanker NIPPO MARU. [1]

10 May 1944:
Arrives at Balikpapan.

15 May 1944:
Departs Balikpapan.

18 May 1944:
Arrives at Tawi Tawi.

20 May 1944:
EIHO MARU departs Tawi Tawi in a convoy consisting of fleet oiler TSURUMI and tankers MANEI and YUHO MARUs escorted by destroyers AKIZUKI and URANAMI and kaibokan MANJU.

21 May 1944:
AKIZUKI is detached and returns to Tawi Tawi. The convoy arrives at Tarakan, Borneo. EIHO MARU loads empty drums and No. 1 heavy oil cargo. and fresh water Embarks passengers.

2 June 1944:
Departs Tarakan.

5 June 1944:
Arrives at Balikpapan. Unloads empty drums and heavy oil cargo. Disembarks, passengers. Loads special grade gasoline, three grades of heavy oil and assorted goods.

17 June 1944:
Departs Balikpapan in convoy also consting of transport KAGU MARU and tankers YUHO and MANEI MARUs escorted by kaibokan KANJU and MIYAKE.

18 June 1944:
Arrives at the Berouw (Berau) River mouth, NE Borneo.

19 June 1944:
Departs the Berouw River mouth.

20 June 1944:
Arrives and departs Tarakan. Anchors that evening in Ligitan Channel, Celebes Sea.

21 June 1944:
Departs Ligitan Channel and enters the Sulu Sea via the Alice Channel.

23 June 1944:
Arrives at Guimaras Bay, Philippines. Transfers gasoline and fuel oil to auxiliary fleet tanker AZUSA MARU.

24 June 1944:
Departs Guimaras.

25 June 1944:
Arrives at Iloilo Island. Takes on boiler water.

26 June 1944:
Departs for Zamboanga, Philippines.

27 June 1944:
Arrives at Zamboanga. Loads a cargo of gasoline and takes on boiler water.

29 June 1944:
Departs Zamboanga.

30 June 1944:
Arrives at Tawi Tawi, Philippines. Unloads her cargo of gasoline. Joins the YUHO MARU convoy also consisting of tanker s YUHO and MANEI MARUs and TSURUMI escorted by destroyer TSUGA, kaibokan KANJU and MIYAKE and submarine chasers CH-38, CH-49 and CH-58.

1 July 1944:
Arrives at Trusan Ligitan, and departs.

2 July 1944:
Arrives at Tarakan, Borneo. TSUGA is detached. TETSUYO MARU joins.

5 July 1944:
Arrives at Balikpapan, Borneo. Loads fuel oil and a cargo of palm oil and assorted goods. Embarks 77 passengers.

10 July 1944:
Departs Balikpapan in convoy with tankers YUHO MARU, TSURUMI and EIHO MARU escorted by kaibokan KANJU and MIYAKE and submarine chasers CH-38, CH-49 and CH-58.

11 July 1944:
Arrives at the Berouw River mouth. ANKO and TATSUMATSU MARUs and tanker HISHI MARU No. 2 join the convoy.

12 July 1944:
Departs the Berouw River mouth. Later that day, anchors off Tarakan.

13 July 1944:
Departs Tarakan. Arrives at the Ligitan Channel. [2]

14 July 1944:
Departs the Ligitan Channel. Later that day, arrives at Tawi Tawi.

15 July 1944:
Departs Tawi Tawi. Later that day, arrives at Jolo, Philippines. TSURUMI, TATSUMATSU and ANKO MARUs and HISHI MARU No. 2 are detached.

16 July 1944:
Departs Jolo. Later that day, arrives at Zamboanga, Philippines.

17 July 1944:
Departs Zamboanga.

19 July 1944:
Arrives at Calabasa at the northern entrance to Guimaras Strait.[2]

20 July 1944:
Departs Calabasa. Later that day, arrives at Sapian Bay, N coast of Panay Island. [2]

21 July 1944:
Departs Sapian Bay. Later that day, arrives at Pilar, N-coast of Panay.[2]

22 July 1944:
Departs Pilar. Later that day, arrives at Manila. EIHO MARU is detached. Loads fresh water and boiler water.

25 July 1944:
Departs Manila.

29 July 1944:
Arrives at Takao. Loads fresh water and boiler water.

30 July 1944:
At 1800, EIHO MARU departs Takao in convoy MI-08 consisting of CHIHAYA, SAN DIEGO, SAN LUIS, BOKO, MANILA, SANKO, TSUYAMA, ARABIA, RYUSHO, MIRI, TATSUBATO, NITTETSU, YAGI, TOUN and ZUIHO MARUs escorted by kaibokan CD-1, CD-18, torpedo-boat SAGI, minesweeper W-17 and auxiliary netlayer KISHIN MARU. The convoy's speed is 7 knots.

1 August 1944:
At 1400, the convoy arrives at Keelung after it is suspected that enemy submarines had gained contact.

4 August 1944:
At 1600, the convoy departs Keelung and heads up the Ryukyu Islands bound for Kyushu.

9 August 1944:
N of Okinoshima. LtCdr (later Cdr) Robert A. Keating's (USNA '33) BARBEL (SS-316) torpedoes and sinks YAGI and BOKO MARU (ex-British SAGRES) at 27-56N, 128-47E. CD-1 and W-17 carry out an antisubmarine sweep and drop 21 depth-charges that cause some damage to BARBEL. YAGI MARU takes down 31 crewmen and three gunners. Casualties aboard BOKO MARU, carrying a cargo of sugar, are unknown. Afterwards, the convoy heads out of the area at full speed making evasive movements. At 1200, the convoy arrives at Koniya, Amami-O-Shima.

11 August 1944:
At 0400, the convoy departs Amami-O-Shima.

13 August 1944:
Arrives at Moji. Disembarks 77 passengers. Unloads fuel oil drums and a cargo of palm oil. Departs that same day for Nagasaki.

August 1944:
Nagasaki. Drydocked. Undergoes hull repairs and modification as an oil supply transport. Additional weapons are fitted.[2]

8 September 1944:
Embarks two passengers and departs Nagasaki.

9 September 1944:
Arrives at Moji. Embarks 2 passengers and departs later that day.

17 September 1944:
Arrives at Keeelung. Loads fuel oil, assorted goods and fresh water.

30 September 1944:
Departs Keeelung.

1 October 1944:
Arrives at Takao.

12 October 1944:
Off Takao. Vice Admiral Marc A. Mitscherís TF 38 launches air strikes against Formosa. TF 38ís planes damage army cargo ship SHINTO MARU at 22-37N, 119-34E. At 0700, EIHO MARU suffers a direct hits. She takes on a 27 degree list to starboard. Five crewmen are KIA. At 1620, when half sunk, she is abandoned. All hands leave the ship.

10 June 1945:
Removed from the Navy List under internal order No. 526.


Author's Notes:
[1] The inclusion of tanker NIPPO MARU is speculative, but highly probable since it is unlikely these two valuable and similar speed ships sailed separately. They likely left in convoy on either 4th of 5th from Manila (or possibly midnight 4/5 May).

[2] From 4 Sep 1944 she was fitted with one 12-cm/12 (4.7Ē) Short Gun, four Type 96 twin 25mm AA guns, two Type 93 single 13mm MGs, 18 Depth Charges and one Type 93 hydrophone.

Thanks to Mr. Gilbert Casse of France.

- Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.


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