(Type KD6 submarine - colorized photo by Irootoko Jr)

IJN Submarine I-175: Tabular Record of Movement

2001-2010 Bob Hackett & Sander Kingsepp

Revision 4

1 November 1934:
Laid down at Mitsubishi's Kobe Yard.

16 September 1937:

1 June 1938:
Cdr (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Okamoto Yoshisuke (47)(former XO of HAYATOMO) is appointed the Chief Equipping Officer (CEO).

18 November 1938:
Cdr Nagai Komei (48)(former CO of I-63) is appointed the CEO.

18 December 1938:
Kobe. I-75 is completed, commissioned in the IJN and attached to Kure Naval District. Cdr Nagai Komei is the CO.

1 November 1939:
LtCdr (Captain, posthumously) Inoue Norikane (51)(former CO of SAGI) is appointed the CO.

31 March-15 May 1941:
LtCdr Inoue is appointed the CEO of I-23 as an additional duty.

November 1941: Operation "Z":
I-75 is in Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Miwa Shigeyoshi's (former CO of KINU) SubRon 3 in Capt Minakuchi Hyoe's SubDiv 11 with I-74. LtCdr Inoue Norikane is the CO.

Admiral Shimizu convenes a meeting of all his commanders aboard his flagship, light cruiser KATORI. LtCdr Inoue and the other commanders are briefed on the planned attack on Pearl Harbor.

11 November 1941:
I-75 is assigned to Captain Imaizumi Yoshijiro's Submarine Advance Force. Departs Saeki with I-74.

20 November 1941:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

23 November 1941:
Departs Kwajalein for the Hawaiian Islands on her first war patrol.

2 December 1941:
The coded signal "Niitakayama nobore (Climb Mt. Niitaka) 1208" is received from the Combined Fleet. It signifies that hostilities will commence on 8 December (Japan time). [1]

7 December 1941: The Attack on Pearl Harbor:
SubRon 3 is deployed south of Oahu, Hawaii. Its mission is to reconnoiter and attack any ships that try to sortie from Pearl Harbor. I-75 is assigned to patrol 25-50 miles SW of Oahu.

15 December 1941:
Shortly before sundown I-75 bombards the Kahului harbor, northern Maui, firing 16 shells from her 120-mm deck gun. The Maui Pineapple Cannery, hit by two shells, receives limited damage estimated at $654.38.

17 December 1941:
180 miles south of Hawaii. I-75 torpedoes the 3,545-ton American merchant MANINI (ex-SUSHERICO), independently en route from Hawaii to San Francisco. After receiving one torpedo hit MANINI goes down by the stern at 17-46N, 157-03W; one sailor is lost. I-75 surfaces to establish the identify of her target and illuminates the sinking vessel with a searchlight. The survivors are rescued by USS PATTERSON (DD-392) on 28 December.

24 December 1941:
After 0455 (GCT), I-75 shells Palmyra Naval Air Station on Palmyra Atoll, firing a total of 12 shells at the local radio station. The US Engineer Department dredge SACRAMENTO, anchored in the atoll's lagoon, receives one hit. The island's 5-inch coastal battery returns fire, forcing the submarine to submerge.

31 December 1941:
Returns to Kwajalein.

12 January 1942:
Departs Kwajalein in company of I-74 for the Aleutians, passes near Midway.

19 February 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

10 March 1942:
LtCdr (Captain, posthumously) Uno Kameo (53)(former CO of RO-64) is appointed the CO.

15 April 1942:
Departs Kure on her second war patrol to form a patrol line with I-74.

10 May 1942:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

20 May 1942: Operation "K-2" - The Second Raid on Pearl Harbor:
I-75 is renumbered I-175. She departs Kwajalein on her third war patrol to patrol 80 miles SW of Oahu and to provide the weather reports prior to the air raid.

20 June 1942:
Returns to Kwajalein.

8 July 1942:
Departs Kwajalein on her fourth war to operate off the eastern coast of Australia between Sydney and 35 degrees S.

20 July 1942:
Arrives off Sydney.

23 July 1942:
20 miles off Newcastle. The surfaced I-175 torpedoes the 3,279-ton Australian armed merchant ALLARA, bound with a cargo of sugar from Cairns, Queensland to Sydney. The ship receives one hit and settles at the stern at 33-03S, 152-22E; she is abandoned, but does not sink. Later, ALLARA is reboarded and towed to Newcastle.

24 July 1942:
Off Crowdy Head, 82 miles NE of Newcastle. I-175 torpedoes and damages the 3,345-ton Australian merchant MURADA.

26 July 1942:
I-175 is depth-charged by HMAS CAIRNS and retires southwards.

28 July 1942:
160 miles NE of Newcastle. I-175 torpedoes and sinks the 2,795-ton French merchant CAGOU, carrying nickel ore.

3 August 1942:
Off Moruya, New South Wales. I-175 shells and damages the 233-ton Australian steam trawler DUREENBEE. The crew abandons the sinking vessel.

5 August 1942:
Arrives at her new patrol station S of Jervis Bay.

7 August 1942: American Operation "Watchtower" - The Invasion of Guadalcanal, British Solomon Islands:
Rear Admiral (later Admiral) Richmond K. Turner's Amphibious Task Force 62, covered by Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Frank J. Fletcher's Task Force 61 and Rear Admiral (later Admiral) John S. McCain's Task Force 63's land-based aircraft, lands Maj Gen (later Gen/Commandant) Alexander A. Vandegrift's 1st Marine Division on Guadalcanal opening a seven-month campaign to take the island.

I-175 receives the order to proceed to San Cristobal area.

12 August 1942:
170 miles SW of Espiritu Santo. After dawn, I-175 is caught on the surface and damaged by two Douglas SBD-3 "Dauntless" dive-bombers from USS SARATOGA (CV-3). USS GRAYSON (DD-435) and STERETT (DD-407), escorting TF 11, are detached to keep her down until dark. I-175 has to make for Rabaul for emergency repairs.

17 August 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul.

22 August 1942:
Departs Rabaul to operate in the area SE of Guadalcanal on her fifth war patrol.

11 September 1942:
Reconnoiters Lunga Point anchorage on the north coast of Guadalcanal.

21 September 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

16 October 1942:
Departs Truk for the Solomons on her sixth war patrol with I-174 to form a patrol line. Later, they are diverted to an area NE of San Cristobal to intercept an American convoy with I-172 and RO-34.

15 November 1942:
LtCdr (Cdr, posthumously) Tabata Sunao (58)(former CO of RO-64) is appointed the CO.

19 November 1942:
Returns to Truk. She is assigned to "B" Patrol Unit with I-9, I-15, I-21, I-24 and I-174.

20 November 1942:
Truk, S of Takeshima (Eten Island). I-175 is damaged in a collision with the 16,764-ton oiler NISSHIN MARU.

27 November 1942:
Departs Truk for Kure.

27 November 1942:
Arrives at Kure.

5 December 1942:
Transferred to Yokosuka for repairs. LtCdr Tabata Sunao is appointed the CO of I-7 (until 16 March 1943) as an additional duty.

1 January 1943:
I-175 is in SubRon 3's SubDiv 11 with I-174 and I-176.

15 March 1943:
SubDiv 11 is disbanded. I-175 is reassigned to SubDiv 12.

11 May 1943: American Operation "Landcrab" - The Invasion of Attu, Aleutians:
Rear Admiral (later Admiral) Thomas C. Kinkaid's Task Force 16, covered by Rear Admiral Francis W. Rockwell's Task Force 51, lands elements of the Army's 4th and 7th Infantry Divisions under the command of Maj Gen Eugene M. Landrum at Holtz Bay and Massacre Bay that later capture the island.

17 May 1943:
Departs Kure.

21 May 1943: Operation "KE" - The Evacuation of Kiska:
The Imperial General Headquarters decides to evacuate the garrison at Kiska Island, Aleutians.

24 May 1943:
I-175, I-169 and I-171 are directed to the area 200 miles S of Kiska to support a planned counter-landing at Kiska.

6 June 1943:
Participates in a supply mission to Kiska, delivering ammunition and 15 tons of food. Embarks 60 passengers.

10 June 1943:
Arrives at Paramushiro, Kuriles.

11 June 1943:
Oiler TEIYO MARU refuels I-175.

13 June 1943:
Departs Paramushiro for Kiska.

17 June 1943:
Arrives at Kiska.

20 June 1943:
Returns to Paramushiro.

24 June 1943:
I-175 departs Paramushiro on her eighth war patrol to raid enemy communications S of Amchitka in company of I-171. No contacts are made.

10 August 1943:
Arrives at Kure.

19 September 1943:
Departs Kure for Truk.

25 September 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

16 October 1943:
I-175 departs Truk for Wake Island on her ninth war patrol.

20 October 1943:
A report is received from I-36 that a large convoy sighted S of the Hawaiian Islands is headed west. I-175, I-19, I-35 and I-169 are ordered to intercept it.

20 November 1943: American Operation "Galvanic" - The Invasion of the Gilberts:
Forces under Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Raymond A. Spruance, Commander, Central Pacific, invade Tarawa and Makin Islands. The invasion fleet of 200 ships includes 13 battleships and 11 carriers.

At 0500, the invasion bombardment begins. Rear Admiral H. M. Mullinnix's CarDiv 24's three escort carriers, USS LISCOME BAY (CVE-56), CORAL SEA (CVE-57) and CORREGIDOR (CVE-58) are attached to Task Force 52, Northern Attack Force.

On her way back to Truk, I-175 is ordered to proceed to Makin at flank speed.

23 November 1943:
Tarawa and Makin are captured.

24 November 1943:
20 miles SW of Butaritari Island. I-175 arrives off Makin. At dawn, she is spotted by USS NEW MEXICO (BB-40) with her SG radar, but dives in time.

With the islands secured, the American forces begin their retirement. CarDiv 24 and USS NEW MEXICO (BB-40) are steaming at 15 knots. At 0505, LISCOME BAY's flight crews begin to prepare their planes for dawn launchings.

At 0510, LtCdr Tabata fires four torpedoes at the carrier. A lookout spots a torpedo and shouts a warning, but it is too late. One torpedo hits the carrier on the starboard side abaft the after engine room. It detonates the bomb storage magazine and the stern of the carrier disintegrates. NEW MEXICO a mile away, is showered with metal fragments and body parts. Two other torpedoes miss CORAL SEA (CVE-57)(future USS ANZIO).

At 0533, LISCOME BAY lists to starboard and sinks, carrying down Admiral Mullinix, her Commanding Officer Captain I. D. Wiltsie, 53 officers and 591 men. 272 of her crew are rescued by USS FRANKS (DD-554) and other destroyers.

Twenty-three of LISCOME BAY's planes are also lost but five Grumman F4F "Wildcats" manage to land on the new USS LEXINGTON (CV-16) and the new YORKTOWN (CV-10).

At 0524, USS KIMBERLY (DD-521) makes a sound contact and attacks it with depth charges at 0534.

26 November 1943:
At 1601, USN codebreakers intercept a message from the CO of I-175 that reads: "Action Summary. At 0135 on 25th in position 3-00 N., 172-20 E. sighted 1 carrier, 1 cruiser (may have been DD) and 1 destroyer headed north. At 0210 attacked carrier and hit her with 3 type 95 torpedoes. Pretty certain she was sunk. For next 6 hours underwent depth charge attack by 2 destroyers. 34 depth charges were dropped of which 6 were close ones."

At 1701, USN codebreakers intercept another message from the CO of I-175 that reads: "Addition to action summary. Today's depth charging resulted in increased ---- and considerable ----- while submerged. Cannot go deep."

27 November 1943:
I-175 arrives at Kwajalein to refuel.

28 November 1943:
Departs Kwajalein.

1 December 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

23 December 1943:
Truk. HEIAN MARU transfers torpedoes to I-175.

30 December 1943:
Truk. HEIAN MARU transfers torpedoes to I-175.

31 December 1943:
Truk. HEIAN MARU transfers distilled water to I-175 and stores to RO-37.

8 January 1944:
LtCdr Tabata receives a personal citation from Vice Admiral Takagi.

10 January 1944:
Truk. HEIAN MARU transfers stores to I-175.

27 January 1944:
I-175 departs Truk for an area NE of the Marshall Islands with ComSubDiv 12, Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Kobayashi Hitoshi (48) aboard.

31 January 1944: American Operation "Flintlock" - The Invasion of the Marshall Islands:
Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Marc A. Mitscher's 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.

That day, I-175 and RO-39 are ordered to proceed to Wotje in the Marshall Islands at flank speed. [2]

3 February 1944:
E of Wotje. I-175 reconnoiters Wotje Atoll. At 2203, she is picked up on USS NEW JERSEY's (BB-61) radar at a range of 21 miles. Cdr E. S. Karpe's CHARRETTE (DD-581) is ordered to detach from the screen and investigate the contact. At 10,300 yards the contact disappears from radar.

4 February 1944:
CHARRETTE acquires a target on her sonar. At 0003, Cdr Karpe drops a salvo of eight depth charges, but then loses contact. LtCdr D. S. Crocker's FAIR (DE-35) is ordered to assist CHARRETTE. At 0040, FAIR attacks with 7.2-inch ahead-thrown Mark 10 "Hedgehog" projector charges. Four explosions are heard and felt that sink the submarine - probably I-175 - at 06-48N, 168-08E. [3]

26 March 1944:
Presumed lost with all 100 hands in the Kwajalein area.

10 July 1944:
Removed from the Navy List.

Authors' Notes:
[1] Mt. Niitaka, located in Formosa (now Taiwan), was then the highest point in the Japanese Empire.

[2] On 31 January 1944, LtCdr Teramoto Iwao was appointed to became the new CO of I-175 following her return.

[3] Most Japanese sources identify the submarine destroyed by CHARETTE as RO-39 and suggest that I-175 was sunk by USS NICHOLAS (DD-449) on 17 February NW of the Marshalls, at 10-34N, 173-31E.

Special thanks for help in preparing this TROM go to Dr. Higuchi Tatsuhiro of Japan and Steve Eckhardt of Australia. Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp.

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