HIJMS Submarine I-40: Tabular Record of Movement

2001 Bob Hackett & Sander Kingsepp

31 July 1943:
The I-40 is completed at the Kure Naval Yard, commissioned in the IJN and based in the Yokosuka Naval District. LtCdr Watanabe Katsuji (former CO of I-169) is assigned as the Commanding Officer.

August 1943:
The I-40 is assigned to SubDiv 11 for workup and training. While in SubRon 11, the I-40 is involved in Type 3 sonar tests carried out by the minelayer NUWAJIMA. The I-40 plays the role of a target off Kure.

31 Oct 1943:
Reassigned to SubRon 1's SubDiv 2, Sixth Fleet.

13 November 1943:
Departs Yokosuka.

19 November 1943:
Arrives at Truk. The I-40 is reassigned in Sixth Fleet to SubRon 1's SubDiv 2 with the 1-16, -19, -21 and the 1-39.

20 November 1943: American Operation "Galvanic" - The Invasion of the Gilberts:
The Americans invade Tarawa and Makin Islands. The invasion fleet of 200 ships includes 13 battleships and 11 carriers.

Vice Admiral (Admiral, posthumously) Takagi Takeo (former CO of MUTSU), Commander, Sixth Fleet (Submarines) orders the I-40, -19, -21, -35, -39, -169, -174, I-175 and the RO-38 to proceed to Tarawa to attack the invasion ships.

22 November 1943:
Departs Truk for the Makin area on her first war patrol, but is MIA thereafter.*

26 November 1943:
Takagi orders the I-19, -40, I-169 and the RO-38 to form a picket line N of Makin.

2 December 1943:
Headquarters, Sixth Fleet sends a signal to the I-40, -19 and the I-20 inquiring as to their respective locations.

21 February 1944:
Presumed lost in the Gilberts with all 97 crewmen.

30 April 1944:
Removed from the Navy List.

Authors' Notes:
*Some accounts state that the I-40 was sunk on 25 November 1943 off Makin Island, Gilberts by the USS RADFORD (DD-446), but other sources indicate that the submarine sunk there and then was the I-19.

Special thanks for help in preparing this TROM go to Dr. Higuchi Tatsuhiro of Japan.

Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp.

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