BYOINSEN


(Hikawa Maru as a Hospital Ship by Ueda Kihachiro)

IJN Hospital Ship HIKAWA MARU:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 1998-2013 Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp and Peter Cundall.

Revision 8


9 November 1928:
Laid down as a passenger liner by the Yokohama Dock Co. for Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) (Japan Mail Steamship Company), Tokyo.

30 September 1929:
Launched and named HIKAWA MARU. Sister ship of HEIAN MARU and HIE MARU. [1]

25 April 1930:
Completed as an 11,622 Gross Register Ton (GRT) passenger liner. HIKAWA MARU has accomodations to carry 331 passengers in three classes: 75 first-class, 70 tourist and 186 third-class. Merchant Captain Shichiro Akiyoshi is given command of the ship.

13 May 1930:
Commences her maiden voyage from Kobe to Seattle via Yokohama, Hawaii and Vancouver. Thereafter, her route includes calls at Yokohama, Kobe, Moji, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Victoria and Seattle returning to Hong Kong.

16 July 1930:
Departs Hong Kong on her second round trip. Makes a total of 11 round trips from Hong Kong to Seattle.

14 July 1932:
A new, but unknown merchant Captain is appointed.

1932:
During his world tour, international film star Charlie Chaplin is a first-class passenger aboard HIKAWA MARU.

3 October 1932:
Departs Kobe on her 13th round trip voyage to Seattle.

20 November 1932:
Calls at Hong Kong on the return leg. This marks her last visit to Hong Kong as part of this service.

28 November 1932:
Departs Kobe on her 14th round voyage. From now on the ship sails to Seattle via Yokohama, Hawaii and Vancouver and returning with stops at Osaka and Kobe. The ship makes a further 59 round trips.

26 January 1937:
Merchant Captain Nai Haremaro assumes command.

21 September 1938:
Seattle. HIKAWA MARU, bound for Seattle in dense fog, is caught by a rip tide and grounds on a shoal near West Point, Washington.

6 February 1939:
A new, but unknown merchant Captain is appointed.

July 1940:
Merchant Captain Ishida Chuyoshi assumes command.

20 July 1940:
Arrives at Osaka at the end of her 73rd round trip. Instead of proceeding to Kobe, she sails directly to Yokohama.

22 July 1940:
Yokohama. HIKAWA MARU departs for Seattle.

3 August 1940:
Pier 89, Seattle. HIKAWA MARU docks and 82 Jewish refugees from Hitler’s Germany disembark. HIKAWA MARU is the first ship to bring refugees from Yokohama to Seattle. The voyage takes place six weeks after the fall of France. Travel from Germany to the United States via the Atlantic was halted and only the Pacific route remains open.

5 June 1941:
Departs Yokohama for Vancouver, Canada carrying more Jewish refugee passengers.

20 October 1941:
Departs Yokohama for Seattle.

18 November 1941:
Arrives at Yokohama and concludes her 74th and last peacetime voyage.

21 November 1941:
Yokosuka. Requisitioned by the IJN as a hospital ship and assigned to the Yokosuka Naval District.

1 December 1941:
Yokohama. Begins conversion at Mitsubishi Zosen yard. That same day, Captain, Surgeon (later Rear Admiral, Surgeon) Kanai Izumi (Surgeon/1918) is appointed medical director of HIKAWA MARU.

8 December 1941:
The rebuild of HIKAWA MARU's interior begins.

21 December 1941:
The conversion is completed.

23 December 1941:
At 1330, departs Yokosuka on her 1st hospital round-trip voyage for the IJN.

31 December 1941:
Arrives at Roi, Marshall Islands.

2 January 1942:
Departs Roi.

5 January 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

16 January 1942:
Departs Truk to an unknown location.

29 January 1942:
Returns to Truk.

1 February 1942:
Departs Truk.

1 February 1942:
Marshall Islands. Vice Admiral (later Fleet Admiral) William F. Halsey Jr’s (USNA ’04) Task Force 8's ENTERPRISE (CV-6) raids Kwajalein and Wotje. ENTERPRISE’s Douglas “Dauntless” SBDs of VB-6 and VS-6 and TBD “Devastators” of VT-6 sink a transport and damage light cruiser KATORI, flagship of the Sixth Fleet’s (Submarines) Commander, Vice Admiral Shimizu Mitsumi (36)(former CO of ISE) who is wounded. I-23, submarine depot ship YASUKUNI MARU and other ships are also damaged in the raid.

4 February 1942:
Arrives at Kwajalein. Tends to wounded resulting from the 1 Feb '42 carrier raid. Departs later that same day.

5 February 1942:
Arrives at Roi.

6 February 1942:
Departs Roi.

7 February 1942:
Arrives at Wotje. Tends to wounded resulting from the bombardment of the atoll by Rear Admiral (later Admiral) Raymond A. Spruance’s (USNA ’07) NORTHAMPTON (CA-26), SALT LAKE CITY (CA-25) and DUNLAP (DD-384) as part of Halsey's 1 Feb' 42 raids on the Marshall Islands.

8 February 1942:
Departs Wotje.

9 February 1942:
Arrives at Kwajalein. Departs later that day.

16 February 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

22 February 1942:
Departs Yokosuka on her 2nd hospital round-trip voyage.

27 February 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

28 February 1942:
Departs Truk.

3 March 1942:
Arrives at Palau.

6 March 1942:
Departs Palau.

10 March 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul.

18 March 1942:
Departs Rabaul.

21 March 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

26 March 1942:
Departs Truk.

28 March 1942:
Arrives at Guam, Marianas.

29 March 1942:
Departs Guam.

1 April 1942:
Arrives at Saipan, Marianas. Departs later that day.

5 April 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

April 1942:
Yokosuka. Drydocked. Undergoes running repairs.

25 April 1942:
Departs Yokosuka on her 3rd hospital round-trip voyage.

30 April 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

5 May 1942:
Departs Truk.

8 May 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul.

11 May 1942:
Departs Rabaul.

12 May 1942:
Arrives at Queen Carola Harbor near Buka, Bougainville and departs later that day.

15 May 1942:
S of Truk. LtCdr (later Cdr) Joseph H. Willingham's (USNA ’26) USS TAUTOG (SS-199) is on station to intercept IJN ships returning from the Battle of the Coral Sea. In the early morning darkness, Willingham tracks a darkened ship, but the first light of dawn reveals that she bears the markings of a hospital ship. Willingham breaks off his attack.

Later that day, HIKAWA MARU arrives at Truk.

17 May 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

22 May 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Later proceeds to Kure.

15 June 1942:
Hashirajima. Light cruiser NAGARA arrives from Kure. NAGARA transfers about 500 wounded survivors of the Battle of Midway to HIKAWA MARU. The survivors are ordered not speak of the disaster, or be arrested.

21 June 1942:
Departs Hashirajima.

22 June 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

23 June 1942:
Departs Yokosuka.

26 June 1942:
Departs Kure on her 4th hospital round-trip voyage.

1 July 1942:
Arrives at Davao, Philippines.

3 July 1942:
Departs Davao.

4 July 1942:
Arrives at Menado, Celebes (Sulawasei).

5 July 1942:
Departs Menado.

6 July 1942:
Arrives at Kendari, Celebes.

7 July 1942:
Departs Kendari.

8 July 1942:
Arrives at Ambon, Moluccas.

9 July 1942:
Departs Ambon.

11 July 1942:
Arrives at Kupang, Timor and departs later that same day.

13 July 1942:
Arrives at Makassar, Celebes.

15 July 1942:
Departs Makassar.

16 July 1942:
Arrives at Balikpapan, Dutch Borneo.

18 July 1942:
Departs Balikpapan.

19 July 1942:
Arrives at Surabaya, Java.

22 July 1942:
Departs Surabaya.

25 July 1942:
Arrives at Singapore, Malaya.

26 July 1942:
Departs Singapore.

27 July 1942:
S China Sea. At 2110, LtCdr (later Cdr) Donald McGregor's (USNA '26) USS GAR (SS-206) spots an unescorted vessel showing a bright red light, heading for Singapore at 06-45N, 107-52E. GAR continues to track the ship until daylight to establish its identity.

28 July 1942:
At 0710, the ship in question is identified as a 5,000-ton hospital ship, unarmed and properly marked. A photo of HIKAWA MARU is taken through the periscope. Later that day, HIKAWA MARU arrives at Saigon, Indochina.

30 July 1942:
Departs Saigon.

2 August 1942:
Arrives at Manila.

5 August 1942:
Departs Manila.

7 August 1942:
Arrives at Mako, Pescadores.

8 August 1942:
Departs Mako.

10 August 1942:
Arrives at Sasebo.

11 August 1942:
Departs Sasebo.

12 August 1942:
Arrives at Kure. Anchors off Kuroshima Strait.

28 August 1942:
Departs Kuroshima on her 5th hospital round-trip voyage.

4 September 1942:
Arrives at Truk, Carolines.

6 September 1942:
Departs Truk.

9 September 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul, New Britain.

11 September 1942:
Departs Rabaul. Arrives later that day at Kavieng, New Ireland.

12 September 1942:
Departs Kavieng.

14 September 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

15 September 1942:
Departs Truk.

20 September 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

26 September 1942:
Departs Yokosuka on her 6th hospital round-trip voyage.

2 October 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

7 October 1942:
Departs Truk.

9 October 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul.

10 October 1942:
Departs Rabaul.

18 October 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

21 October 1942:
Captain, Surgeon (later Rear Admiral, Surgeon) Honma Masato (Surgeon/1919) is appointed medical director of HIKAWA MARU.

22 October 1942:
Departs Yokosuka on her 7th hospital round-trip voyage.

28 October 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

7 November 1942:
Departs Truk.

10 November 1942:
Arrives at Buin.

11 November 1942:
Departs Buin.

12 November 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul.

13 November 1942:
Departs Rabaul.

21 November 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

29 November 1942:
Departs Yokohama on her 8th hospital round-trip voyage.

6 December 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

11 December 1942:
Departs Truk.

14 December 1942:
Bougainville Strait. In the early morning, LtCdr (later Rear Admiral-Ret) Marvin G. Kennedy (USNA '29) USS WAHOO (SS-238)* makes SJ radar and visual contact on the upper works of a large unescorted ship that is not zigzagging. On his next observation, Kennedy sees that her side is painted white with a horizontal green band and large red cross amidships. He consults his Japanese Merchant Ship Identification Manual, ONI-208J, and concludes the contact is a hospital ship similar to Army hospital ship MANILA MARU. Kennedy lets her pass. HIKAWA MARU arrives at Buin and departs later that day.

15 December 1942:
St. George's Channel, off New Britain, Bismarcks. At 1404, LtCdr (later Rear Admiral) William E. Ferrall's (USNA ’27) USS SEADRAGON (SS-194) makes a periscopic observation of a large ship at 04-39S, 152-25.5 E. Ferrall correctly identifies the contact as hospital ship HIKAWA MARU and lets her pass. HIKAWA MARU arrives at Rabaul later that day.

17 December 1942:
Departs Rabaul.

25 December 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

5 January 1943:
Departs Yokohama on her 9th hospital round-trip voyage.

11 January 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

18 January 1943:
Departs Truk.

21 January 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul and departs later the same day.

29 January 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

5 February 1943:
Departs Yokosuka on her 10th hospital round-trip voyage.

11 February 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

14 February 1943:
Departs Truk.

16 February 1943:
Arrives at Kavieng. Departs later that day.

17 February 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul. Departs later that day.

20 February 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

24 February 1943:
Departs Truk.

26 February 1943:
Arrives at Saipan, Marianas. Departs later that day.

2 March 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Later proceeds to Yokohama.

12 March 1943:
Departs Yokohama on her 11th hospital round-trip voyage.

16 March 1943:
Arrives at Saipan and departs later that day.

18 March 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

23 March 1943:
Departs Truk.

26 March 1943:
Arrives at Buin, Bougainville and departs later that day.

27 March 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul and departs later that day.

28 March 1943:
Arrives at Kavieng and departs later that day.

30 March 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

1 April 1943:
Departs Truk.

8 April 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

18 April 1943:
Departs Yokosuka on her 12th hospital round-trip voyage.

24 April 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

28 April 1943:
Departs Truk.

1 May 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul.

2 May 1943:
Departs Rabaul.

3 May 1943:
Arrives at Kavieng and departs later that day.

5 May 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

7 May 1943:
Departs Truk.

9 May 1943:
Arrives at Saipan and departs later that day.

13 May 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

11 June 1943:
Departs Yokosuka on her 13th hospital round-trip voyage.

19 June 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul and departs later that day.

22 June 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

4 July 1943:
Departs Truk.

6 July 1943:
Arrives at Kavieng and departs later that day.

7 July 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul. Departs later that day for Kavieng, arriving and stopping again the same day.

10 July 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

13 July 1943:
Departs Truk.

18 July 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

28 July 1943:
Departs Yokosuka on her 14th hospital round-trip voyage to an unknown destination, probably Truk/Rabaul.

1 September 1943:
Arrives at back at Yokosuka.

9 September 1943:
DepartsYokosuka on her 15th hospital round-trip voyage.

15 September 1943:
Arrives at Manila.

18 September 1943:
Departs Manila

21 September 1943:
Arrives at Davao, Philippines.

22 September 1943:
Departs Davao.

24 September 1943:
Arrives at Ambon, Moluccas and departs later that day.

26 September 1943:
Arrives at Kupang, Timor and departs later that day.

28 September 1943:
Arrives at Makassar, Celebes and departs later that day.

29 September 1943:
Arrives at Balikpapan, Borneo.

2 October 1943:
Departs Balikpapan.

3 October 1943:
Surabaya, Java. When arriving, HIKAWA MARU is damaged by a mine. Repairs are carried out at Surabaya.

10 October 1943:
Departs Surabaya.

11 October 1943:
Arrives at Jakarta, Java.

13 October 1943:
Departs Jakarta.

15 October 1943:
Arrives at Singapore, Malaya.

18 October 1943:
Departs Singapore.

21 October 1943:
Arrives at Saigon.

22 October 1943:
Departs Saigon.

24 October 1943:
Arrives at Samah (Sana or Sanya), Hainan Island.

25 October 1943:
Departs Samah. Later that day, arrives then departs Takao, Formosa.

31 October 1943:
Arrives at Sasebo.

2 November 1943:
Departs Sasebo.

4 November 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

November 1943:
Captain, Surgeon Nomura Mamoru is appointed Medical Director of HIKAWA MARU.

16 November 1943:
Departs Yokosuka on her 16th hospital round-trip voyage.

22 November 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

12 December 1943:
Departs Truk.

15 December 1943:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

16 December 1943:
Departs Kwajalein, then arrives and departs Roi.

17 December 1943:
Arrives at Wotje.

18 December 1943:
Departs Wotje then arrives and departs Taroa.

19 December 1943:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

21 December 1943:
Departs Kwajalein. Later that day arrives at Roi.

22 December 1943:
Departs Roi.

25 December 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

28 December 1943:
Departs Truk.

31 December 1943:
Arrives at Palau.

2 January 1944:
Departs Palau.

7 January 1944:
Arrives at Sasebo.

9 January 1944:
Departs Sasebo for Yokosuka.

11 January 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

19 January 1944:
Departs Yokosuka on her 17th hospital round-trip voyage.

25 January 1944:
Arrives at Truk.

26 January 1944:
Departs Truk for Rabaul. Soon after departure she is recalled by Combined Fleet Secret Order No. 262046.

27 January 1944:
Returns to Truk.

28 January 1944:
Departs Truk.

31 January - February 1944: American Operation “Flintlock” - The Invasion of the Marshall Islands:
Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Marc A. Mitscher’s (USNA ’10) Task Force 58 lands the 4th Marine Division and the Army's 7 th Infantry Division that capture the Kwajalein, Roi-Namur and Majuro atolls.

31 January 1944:
Arrives at Rabaul. Departs the same day.

3 February 1944:
Arrives at Truk. Departs later the same day.

9 February 1944:
Arrives at Beppu.

10 February 1944:
Departs Beppu.

11 February 1944:
Arrives at Kure.

14 February 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

15 February 1944:
Captain Kakumu Juji assumes command.

17-18 February 1944: American Operation "Hailstone" - The Attack on Truk:
Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Marc A. Mitscher’s (USNA ’10) Task Force 58’s five fleet carriers and four light carriers, supported by six battleships, ten cruisers and 28 destroyers, launch air attacks on Japanese ships in the lagoon, airfields and shore installations. They sink 31 transports and 10 naval vessels (two cruisers, four destroyers and four auxiliary vessels), destroy nearly 200 aircraft and damage severely about 100 more. Truk is eliminated as a major fleet anchorage for the IJN.

HIKAWA MARUs sister ship HEIAN MARU is sunk at Truk during the raids. Her other sister, HIE MARU is sunk at Truk in Nov '43.

20 February 1944:
Departs Yokosuka on her 18th hospital round-trip voyage.

*E 26 February 1944:
Arrives at Truk. Later departs for Palau, then to Balikpapan. Returns to Yokosuka via Palau and then Saipan, an unusual routing.

20 April 1944:
Departs Yokosuka on her 19th hospital round-trip voyage.

24 April 1944:
Arrives at Saipan.

25 April 1944:
Departs Saipan.

27 April 1944:
Arrives at Truk and departs later that day.

1 May 1944:
Arrives at Palau and departs later that day.

5 May 1944:
Arrives at Balikpapan.

6 May 1944:
Departs Balikpapan.

9 May 1944:
Arrives at Ambon and departs later that day.

13 May 1944:
Arrives at Surabaya.

17 May 1944:
Departs Surabaya.

19 May 1944:
Arrives at Singapore.

23 May 1944:
Departs Singapore.

28 May 1944:
Arrives at Manila.

30 May 1944:
Departs Manila.

4 June 1944:
Arrives at Sasebo.

13 June 1944:
Departs Sasebo.

14 June 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

1 July 1944:
Departs Yokosuka on her 20th hospital round-trip voyage.

9 July 1944:
Arrives at Palau and departs later that day.

13 July 1944:
Arrives at Truk.

15 July 1944:
Departs Truk and later that day arrives and departs Mereyon. HIKAWA MARU's bow strikes a magnetic mine near the Caroline Islands.

19 July 1944:
Arrives at Davao. Undergoes inspection of damages.

26 July 1944:
Departs Davao.

1 August 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Undergoes repairs.

2 September 1944:
Departs Yokosuka on her 21st hospital round-trip voyage.

3 September 1944:
Arrives at Kure.

5 September 1944:
Departs Kure.

12 September 1944:
Arrives at Manila.

15 September 1944:
Departs Manila.

20 September 1944:
Arrives at Surabaya.

25 September 1944:
Departs Surabaya and same day arrives at Jamuan, Indonesia.

26 September 1944:
Departs Jamuan.

29 September 1944:
Arrives at Balikpapan.

30 September 1944:
Departs Balikpapan.

2 October 1944:
Arrives at Davao. Departs later that day.

10 October 1944:
Arrives at Sasebo.

17 October 1944:
Departs Sasebo.

21 October 1944:
Arrives at Manila.

22 October 1944:
Departs Manila.

28 October 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

October 1944:
Captain, Surgeon Kagiyama Shunroku is appointed Medical Director of HIKAWA MARU.

5 November 1944:
Departs Yokosuka on her 22nd hospital round-trip voyage.

18 November 1944:
Arrives at Singapore.

25 December 1944:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

26 January 1945:
Departs Yokosuka on her 23rd hospital round-trip voyage. Steams to Kure then St. Jacques, Indochina, Batavia (Jakarta) and Singapore.

2 February 1945:
Arrives at Singapore.

14 February 1945:
Departs Singapore. Her stern hits a mine in the Singapore Straits, but she is able to proceed back to Singapore for repairs.

5 March 1945:
At 1100 (JST) arrives at Samah, Hainan Island and departs at 1830.

11 March 1945:
Arrives at Sasebo.

12 March 1945:
Departs Sasebo.

13 March 1945:
Arrives at Hiroshima Bay.

14 March 1945:
Arrives at Kure.

17 March 1945:
Departs Kure.

18-22 March 1945:
Anchors in Sumoto Bight (Awaji Island), Inland Sea.

24 March 1945:
Arrives at Yokosuka. All patients aboard are transferred to naval hospitals in the area.

March-April 1945:
Yokohama. Undergoes repairs at Mitsubishi's shipyard.

29 March 1945:
Proceeds to Yokohama for repairs according to Combined Fleet Order No. 675.

1945:
Captain, Surgeon, Murakami Tetsu is appointed Medical Director of HIKAWA MARU.

30 April 1945:
Departs Yokosuka on her 24th hospital round-trip voyage.

2 May 1945:
Arrives at Kure.

12 May 1945:
Departs Kure.

14 May 1945:
Arrives at Maizuru.

16 May 1945:
Departs Maizuru.

17 May 1945:
Arrives at Sasebo.

19 May 1945:
Departs Sasebo.

29 May 1945:
Arrives at Jakarta, Java.

2 June 1945:
Departs Jakarta.

4 June 1945:
Arrives at Seletar, Singapore.

5 June 1945:
Departs Seletar.

9 June 1945:
Arrives at Yulin, Hainan Island, China. Departs the same day.

14 June 1945:
Arrives at Sasebo.

21 June 1945:
Arrives at Maizuru. Drydocked, probably for general maintenance.

4 July 1945:
Undocked. Departs Maizuru.

5 July 1945:
Arrives at Sasebo.

July 1945:
Returns to Maizuru.

25 July 1945:
Maizuru. Aircraft from AG-88 of USS YORKTOWN (CV-10) attack shipping in the harbor, but HIKAWA MARU is not damaged.

15 August 1945: Cessation of Hostilities:
Maizuru. Hospital ships HIKAWA MARU and slightly smaller TAKASAGO MARU are the only large Japanese passenger ships to survive the war.

September 1945:
HIKAWA MARU is requisitioned by the Occupation Forces for use by the Repatriation Service to transport former Japanese soldiers and civilians from the south seas, China and the Netherlands East Indies to Japan. The ship is allocated Scapjap number H-022. [2]

10 September 1945:
Departs Maizuru.

27 September 1945:
Arrives at Mille. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later the same day.

7 October 1945:
Arrives at Uraga. Disembarks troops and passengers.

26 October 1945:
Departs Uraga.

31 October 1945:
Arrives at Wake Island.

1 November 1945:
Departs Wake Island with about 1,000 former Japanese troops aboard.

4 November 1945:
Arrives at Kusaie. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated.

6 November 1945:
Departs Kusaie.

12 November 1945:
Arrives at Uraga. Disembarks troops and passengers.

15 November 1945:
Undergoes repairs and maintenance at Uraga Zosen.

30 December 1945:
Repairs are completed.

2 January 1946:
Departs Uraga.

6 January 1946:
Arrives at Kirun, Taiwan. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated.

7 January 1946:
Departs Kirun.

14 January 1946:
Arrives at Wewak, New Guinea. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated.

16 January 1946:
Departs Wewak.

23 January 1946:
Arrives at Uraga. Disembarks troops and passengers.

2 February 1946:
Departs Uraga.

6 February 1946:
Arrives at Kirun. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated.

7 February 1946:
Departs Kirun.

15 February 1946:
Arrives at Fauro Island. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated.

16 February 1946:
Departs Fauro Island.

19 February 1946:
Arrives at Torokina. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later that day.

27 February 1946:
Arrives at Uraga. Disembarks troops and passengers.

3 March 1946:
Departs Yokohama.

11 March 1946:
Arrives at Rabaul. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated.

13 March 1946:
Departs Rabaul.

22 March 1946:
Arrives at Kirun. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later that day.

23 March 1946:
Arrives at Kagoshima. Disembarks troops and passengers. Departs later that day.

28 March 1946:
Arrives at Pusan, S Korea. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later that day.

31 March 1946:
Arrives at Uraga. Disembarks troops and passengers. Enters drydock.

4 May 1946:
Repairs are completed.

6 May 1946:
Departs Uraga. Disembarks troops and passengers. Enters drydock.

15 May 1946:
Arrives at Menado. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later that day.

16 May 1946:
Arrives at Morotai. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later that day.

22 May 1946:
Arrives at Balikpapan, Borneo. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later that day.

23 May 1946:
Arrives at Samarinda. Departs later that day.

24 May 1946:
Arrives at Makassar, Celebes. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later that day.

25 May 1946:
Arrives at Bali, Indonesia. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later that day.

28 May 1946:
Arrives at Morotai. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated and departs later that day.

16 June 1946:
Arrives at Otaka. Disembarks troops and passengers.

23 June 1946:
Departs Kure.

26 June 1946:
Arrives at Shanghai, China. Embarks troops and passengers to be repatriated.

1 July 1946:
Departs Shanghai.

5 July 1946:
Arrives at Uraga. Disembarks troops and passengers.

3 August 1946:
Arrives at Yokohama for repairs and maintenance.

15 August 1946:
Maintenance is completed. HIKAWA MARU makes no further repatriation voyages.

1947:
Returned to the Nippon Yusen Kaisha Line. During the war, NYK lost 172 ships totaling 1,028,000 gross tons - almost its entire fleet.

1947-1954:
NYK operates HIKAWA MARU as a freighter between Japan and the East Coast of the United States.

August 1949:
HIKAWA MARU operates as an ocean-going liner between Japan and Burma. Later, she transports iron ore from Thailand.

1953:
Refitted and restored to a passenger liner.

25 July 1953-1960:
Resumes service on the Yokohama-Seattle route.

21 December 1960:
Decommissioned by NYK and retired. She had carried 25,000 passengers in 238 voyages across the Pacific to Seattle, Washington and Vancouver, British Columbia between 1930 and 1960.

1961:
Yokohama. HIKAWA MARU is permanently moored at the eastern end of Yamashita Park. Later, her engine spaces and lower accommodation are largely gutted. She becomes a floating museum, hostel and restaurant.

Early 2005:
HIKAWA MARU's owners announce large financial losses and that they are seeking to sell the vessel. Sources within NYK confirm that if a buyer is not found the company will step in financially to ensure ongoing preservation.

August 2007:
NYK Line underwrites the restoration of the historic Japanese liner that begins this day.

25 April 2008:
Renamed NYK HIKAWA MARU, she is reopened to the public in Yamashita Park.


(Hikawa Maru at Yamashita Park)


Authors' Notes:
*E = Estimated date.

[1] HIKAWA MARU's sisters, HIE and HEIAN MARUs, were both converted to Submarine Depot Ships.

[2] Allied occupation forces were responsible for the return of six million Japanese military personnel and civilians from Japan's defunct far-flung Empire. In addition, there were over a million Korean and about 40,000 Chinese prisoners and conscript laborers and approximately 7,000 Formosans and 15,000 Ryukyu Islanders to be repatriated.

Some Allied and many former IJN warships, from aircraft carriers to kaibokan, were used to facilitate the enormous repatriation effort. Japanese vessels and crews were used to the fullest extent possible to conserve Allied manpower and accelerate demobilization. Each ex-IJN ship first had to be demilitarized; guns removed or, in the case of large warships, barrels severed, ammunition landed, and radar and catapults removed, if fitted. Repatriation of the Chinese on Japanese ships began early in October from Hakata, but U.S. guard detachments had to be placed on many ships to prevent disorder because the Japanese crews could not control the returnees.

Japanese-run repatriation centers were established at Kagoshima, Hario near Sasebo, and Hakata near Fukuoka. Other reception centers were established and operated at Maizuru, Shimonoseki, Sasebo, Senzaki, Kure, Uraga, Yokohama, Moji and Hakodate. Allied line and medical personnel supervised the centers. Incoming Japanese were sprayed with DDT, examined and inoculated for typhus and smallpox, provided with food, and transported to his final destination in Japan.

Thanks to Mr. John Whitman of Virginia, USA and Mr. Gilbert Casse of France.

-Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp and Peter Cundall.


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