HIJMS Submarine I-10: Tabular Record of Movement

2001 Bob Hackett & Sander Kingsepp

Revision 1

31 October 1941:
Completed at Kawasaki's Kobe Yard, commissioned in the IJN and based in the Sasebo Naval District. Cdr (later Captain) Kayabara Yasuchika is the Commanding Officer.

10 November 1941: Operation "Z":
The I-10 is the flagship of SubRon 2. Vice Admiral Shimizu Mitsumi's (former CO of ISE), Commander, Sixth Fleet (Submarines) convenes a meeting of all his commanders aboard his flagship, the light cruiser KATORI. Captain (later Rear Admiral) Mito Hasashi, Chief of Staff, Sixth Fleet briefs the assembled commanders on the planned attack on Pearl Harbor.

The I-10 and the I-26 are assigned to the Sixth Fleet's Reconnaissance Unit under Cdr Kayabara. The I-10 is assigned to reconnoiter areas in the Fiji, Samoa and Tutuila in the South Pacific and the I-26 is assigned to the Aleutians area.

16 November 1941:
The I-10 departs Yokosuka for the South Pacific on her first war patrol.

30 November 1941:
Off Fiji. The I-10's Yokosuka E14Y1 "Glen" floatplane reconnoiters Suva Bay, Fiji but fails to return. After a fruitless search under radio silence, the I-10 departs the area.

4 December 1941:
At Pago Pago. The I-10 conducts a submerged reconnaissance. Cdr Kayabara sights a ship that he identifies as an American ASTORIA-class cruiser.

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). Mt. Niitaka, located in Formosa (now Taiwan), is then the highest point in the Japanese Empire.

7 December 1941: The Attack on Pearl Harbor:
The I-10 is stationed S of Oahu.

10 December 1941:
200 miles SE of Hawaii. The I-10 shells and sinks the 4, 473-ton Danish freighter NORDHVAL, now flying the Panamanian-flag as the DONERAIL, at 08-00N, 152-00W.

The I-6 reports sighting a LEXINGTON-class aircraft carrier and two cruisers heading NE. Vice Admiral Shimizu in his flagship, the light cruiser KATORI, at Kwajalein orders all of SubRon 1's boats, except the Special Attack Force, to pursue and sink the carrier.

14 December 1941:
After the unsuccessful pursuit of the carrier, the I-10 and other submarines are ordered to the West Coast of the United States to attack shipping. The I-10 is assigned to patrol off San Diego, California.

19 December 1941:
Arrives at Kwajalein.

21 January 1942:
Returns to Yokosuka.

16 March 1942:
Vice Admiral, the Marquis, Komatsu Teruhisa (former CO of CA NACHI) assumes command of the Sixth Fleet (Submarines).

27 March 1942:
The German naval staff requests the IJN to launch operations against Allied convoys in the Indian Ocean.

8 April 1942:
The Japanese formally agree to dispatch submarines to the East Coast of Africa. The 1st Division of SubRon 8 is withdrawn from its base at Kwajalein in the Marshall Islands.

16 April 1942:
The I-10 is the flagship of Commodore (later Rear Admiral) Ishizaki Noboru's (former CO of HYUGA) SubRon 8, in the "KO" detachment with the I-16, I-18, I-20, I-30 and their support ships, the auxiliary cruisers/supply ships AIKOKU MARU and the HOKOKU MARU.

At Hashirajima, Hiroshima Bay. Vice Admiral Komatsu, Commodore Ishizaki their staffs and midget submarine crews pay a courtesy call on the CINC, Combined Fleet, Admiral Yamamoto aboard his flagship, the new battleship YAMATO. At 1100, the KO detachment departs for Penang, Occupied British Malaya.

30 April 1942:
At Penang. The KO detachment (less the I-10 and the I-30) load midget submarines aboard. The I-10 is to reconnoiter selected points on the East African coast for possible attack. The I-30 is assigned a similar reconnaissance mission and departs in advance. The I-10, with Commodore Ishizaki embarked, and the KO detachment depart Penang and sortie westward in the Indian Ocean.

20 May 1942:
The I-10 catapults her Glen floatplane that reconnoiters Durban, South Africa. During the week, her aircraft overflies East London, Port Elizabeth and Simonstown.

29 May 1942:
At night, the I-10's floatplane reconnoiters the harbor at Diego Suarez, Madagascar. The plane sights the old ROYAL SOVEREIGN-class battleship (HMS RAMILLES) at anchor in the bay. Commodore Ishizaki orders a midget submarine attack be made the next night.

30 May 1942:
The I-16 and I-20 launch their midget submarines about 10 miles from Diego Suarez to penetrate the harbor. At 2025, a midget torpedoes and heavily damages the RAMILLES. Then at 2120, while British corvettes drop depth charges, the I-20's midget under LT Akieda Saburo with PO2C Takemoto Masami torpedoes and sinks the 6,993-ton British tanker BRITISH LOYALTY.

The I-10's aircraft reconnoiters the harbor twice to assess the results of the attack.

6 June 1942: Commerce Raiding in the Mozambique Channel, Indian Ocean:
The I-10, still under Cdr Kayabara, torpedoes and then sinks by gunfire the 2,639-ton Panamanian-flagged ATLANTIC GULF at 21-03S, 37-36E.

1644: The I-10 sinks the 4,999-ton American freighter MELVIN H. BAKER about 45 miles off the coast of Mozambique at 21-44S, 36-38W.

8 June 1942:
1253: The I-10 torpedoes and sinks the 5,224-ton British merchant KING LUD at 20-00S, 40-00E. She was enroute alone from Capetown, South Africa to Bombay, India.

June 1942:
SubRon 8's AIKOKU MARU and the HOKOKU MARU replenish and refuel the I-10.

28 June 1942:
The I-10 torpedoes and sinks the 4,937-ton British merchant QUEEN VICTORIA at 21-15S, 40-30 E.

30 June 1942:
0700: The I-10 torpedoes and sinks the 6,736-ton American freighter EXPRESS at 23-30S, S, 37-30E.

6 July 1942:
1615: The I-10 torpedoes and sinks the 4,504-ton Greek merchant NYMPHE at 15-48S, 40-42E.

8 July 1942:
0748: The I-10 torpedoes and then sinks by gunfire the 5,498-ton British merchant HARTISMERE at 18-00S, 41-22E.

9 July 1942:
The I-10 torpedoes and then sinks by gunfire the 4,427-ton Dutch merchant ALCHIBA, damaged previously by the I-18, at 18-30S, 41-40 E. The ALCHIBA was enroute from Durban, South Africa to London.

15 July 1942:
Indian Ocean. The I-10's floatplane reconnoiters Reunion.

16 July 1942:
Indian Ocean. The I-10's floatplane reconnoiters Mauritius.

July 1942:
The I-10 arrives at Penang.

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.

12 August 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

15 September 1942:
Cdr Kayabara is relieved by Cdr (later Captain) Yamada Takashi (former CO of I-20).

21 October 1942:
Departs Yokosuka.

27 October 1942:
Arrives at Truk.

24 November 1942:
Departs Truk on her third war patrol to operate in the Solomons area.

18 December 1942:
Returns to Truk.

15 January 1943:
Departs Truk on her fourth war patrol to raid enemy communications south of the Solomons.

18 January 1943:
The I-10 reconnoiters Noumea, Auckland, New Zealand and the Torres Strait.

30 January 1943:
The I-10 torpedoes and sinks the 7,176-ton American "Liberty" ship SAMUEL GOMPERS 115 miles from New Caledonia at 24-28S, 166-20E.

22 February 1943:
The I-10 is ordered to patrol off New Zealand. She passes through the Cook Strait that night. She is detected by Allied radio direction finding, but air searches cannot locate her and she escapes.

1 March 1943:
New Hebrides. The I-10 torpedoes the 7,141-ton American tanker GULFWAVE at 20-30S, 174-45E, but the GULFWAVE reaches Suva, Fiji, under her own power and suffers no casualties

21 March 1943:
Arrives at Sasebo for repairs.

15 April 1943:
Cdr Yamada is relieved by Cdr Tonozuka Kinzo (former CO of I-34).

2 June 1943:
Departs Kure for Penang.

June 1943:
At Penang. The I-10 is the flagship of SubRon 8 with the I-16, I-18, I-20, I-21, I-24, I-27 and the I-29.

6 July 1943:
The I-10 departs Penang on her fifth war patrol to raid enemy communications in the Indian Ocean.

July 1943:
The I-10 refuels and replenishes the I-8 that detaches via the Cape of Good Hope for the German U-Boat base at Brest, France. The I-10 also refuels the U-511 (later RO-500) that is enroute from Lorient, France via Penang to Kure.

22 July 1943:
Gulf of Aden. The I-10 sinks the 7,634-ton Norwegian tanker ALCIDES enroute from the Persian Gulf to Fremantle, Australia. Hit by three torpedoes, she sinks at 03S, 68E. The I-10 comes alongside and takes the Captain, the Radio Officer and the Second Mate on board. All the others are shot or drown. The captured officers are imprisoned in Ofuna and Omori POW camps in Japan and freed by the Americans on 29 August 1945.

4 August 1943:
Arrives at Penang.

19 August 1943:
Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Ichioka Hisashi (former CO of CL YURA) assumes command of SubRon 8 from Rear Admiral Ishizaki.

2 September 1943:
The I-10 departs Penang for the Indian Ocean with a camera crew aboard. The footage taken on this patrol is used for the propaganda film "Gochin!"(Sunk!).

14 September 1943:
Indian Ocean, SW of the Chagos Islands. The I-10 torpedoes and sinks the 6,361-ton Norwegian tanker BRAMORA at 06-00N, 67-00E that was enroute from Bandar Abbas, Arabia with oil for Melbourne, Australia.

24 September 1943:
The I-10 torpedoes and sinks the 7,634-ton American merchant ELIAS HOWE 75 miles SE of Aden at 11-40N, 44-35E.

1 October 1943:
The I-10 torpedoes the 4,836-ton Norwegian merchant STORVIKEN that is enroute from Mombasa for Aden with a cargo of coal. She sinks at 11-43N, 48-07E. Two crewmen are taken aboard as POWs.

2 October 1943:
The I-10 attacks convoy AP-47 and torpedoes the 9,057-ton Norwegian tanker ANNA KNUDSEN at 14-20N, 50-47E, but she remains afloat and makes shore.

24 October 1943:
The I-10 shells and sinks the 4,533-ton British merchant CONGELLA.

31 October 1943:
Arrives at Penang.

16 December 1943:
Arrives at Sasebo for repairs and overhaul.

18 January 1944:
Cdr Tonozuka is relieved by Cdr Nakajima Seiji (former CO of I-155).

3 February 1944:
Departs Sasebo for Truk.

17-18 February 1944: American Operation "Hailstone" - The Attack on Truk:
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.

The I-10 sustains minor damage during the air raid.

25 February 1944:
Departs Truk on her sixth war patrol to operate off the West Coast of the United States.

4 March 1944:
East of Mili. The I-10 is damaged in a depth-charge attack.

March-May 1944:
Returns to Yokosuka via Truk for battle-damage repairs.

9 May 1944:
Departs Yokosuka on her seventh war patrol to operate east of the Marshall Islands.

12 June 1944:
Marshall Islands. The I-10's floatplane reconnoiters the American fleet anchorage at Majuro. The aircraft reports that the anchorage is empty.

13 June 1944: Operation "A-Go": The Defense of the Marianas:
In Tokyo, the CINC, Combined Fleet, Admiral Toyoda Soemu, (former CO of HYUGA), activates A-Go and orders Vice Admiral Takagi Takeo (former CO of MUTSU), CINC, Sixth Fleet (Submarines) to redeploy his boats to the Marianas from the area bounded by Palau, Mindanao and New Guinea.

From his Headquarters on Saipan, Takagi orders all 18 available submarines to deploy to the east of the Marianas.

15 June 1944: American Operation "Forager" - The Invasion of Saipan:
Vice Admiral (later Admiral) Richmond K. Turner's Task Force 52 lands Marine LtGen Holland M. Smith's V Amphibious Corps and the invasion begins. Communications between Takagi's Advance Expeditionary Force (Sixth Fleet) are disrupted by the invasion. Command of the Sixth Fleet's submarines passes to Rear Admiral Owada Noboru (former CO of YAMASHIRO), ComSubRon 7 at Truk.

Admiral Owada orders most of the Sixth Fleet's submarines to withdraw from the Marianas area except the I-10 and five others.

24 June 1944:
The Combined Fleet orders Owada to evacuate Vice Admiral Takagi and his staff from their headquarters on the eastern coast of Saipan. Owada orders the I-10 located E of Saipan to breakthrough the cordon of American ships around Saipan and get Takagi and his people out. The rescue mission fails.

28 June 1944:
The I-10 sends her regular situation report. It is her last signal.

2 July 1944:
Presumed lost off Saipan with all hands.

4 July 1944:
65 miles ENE of Saipan. The USS DAVID W. TAYLOR (DD-551) and the RIDDLE (DE-185) are screening Task Group 50.17's escort carriers that are refueling. The TAYLOR and the RIDDLE detect, attack and sink a submarine - probably the I-10 - at 15-26N, 147-48E.

10 October 1944:
Removed from the Navy List.

Author's Note: Special thanks for help in preparing this TROM go to Dr. Higuchi Tatsuhiro of Japan.
Bob Hackett

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