ZATSUYOSEN!

(NAGISAN MARU prewar)

IJN NAGISAN MARU:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2013-2016 Gilbert Casse, Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall

Revision 3


14 August 1930:
Tama. Laid down by Mitsui Bussan K.K. Zosenbu shipyard for Mitsui Bussan K.K., as a 4,410-tons cargo ship.

5 March 1931:
Launched and named NAGISAN MARU.

25 April 1931:
Completed and registered in Kobe. Her Gross Registered Tonnage (GRT) and Net Registered Tonnage (NRT) respectively are 4,410-tons and 2,615-tons. [1]

E 1931:
Departs Muroran, Hokkaido. Calls at Kawasaki carrying coal and timber.

1932:
Her Gross Registered Tonnage (GRT) and Net Registered Tonnage (NRT) are respectively changed to 4,391-tons and 2,602-tons. [1]

1933:
Departs Karafuto (now Sakhalin) carrying timber.

1936:
Departs Formosa (now Taiwan) with unidentified cargo.

1941:
Her Gross Registered Tonnage (GRT) is changed to 4,392-tons. [1].

31 July 1941:
Requisitioned by the IJN as a general requisitioned transport (Ippan Choyosen).

6 December 1941:
Comes alongside and coals auxiliary gunboat IKUTA MARU.

20 December 1941:
Enters Kawasaki Heavy Industries K.K. shipyard for the conversion to military duty.

3 January 1942:
The conversion is completed.

9 January 1942:
Tactically assigned to the Combined Fleet under telegram No. 433 (from 10 Jan’). That same day, assigned to Southern Area under telegram No. 39.

10 January 1942:
Registered in the IJN as an auxiliary transport, (Ko) category and attached to the Maizuru Naval District with Maizuru as homeport under internal order No. 35. [2]

4 February 1942:
Departs Moji.

20 February 1942:
Captain Geka Ryosaburo (36) is posted Supervisor.

1 March 1942:
Currently assigned to supply Southern Air Fleet.

16 March 1942:
At 1800 departs Bali with transport RAKUTO MARU escorted by patrol boat PB-1.

19 March 1942:
Arrives at Kupang, Timor Island.

3 April 1942:
Departs Kupang.

6 April 1942:
Arrives at Kendari, Celebes (now Sulawesi).

10 April 1942:
Assigned to transport Air Force Base personnel.

13 April 1942:
Departs Kendari.

16 April 1942:
Arrives at Davao, Mindanao.

20 April 1942:
Departs Davao.

28 April 1942:
Arrives at Takao, Formosa (now Kaohsiung, Taiwan).

10 May 1942:
Departs Takao.

20 May 1942:
Arrives at Kendari. Departs later in early June.

13 June 1942:
Arrives at Takao.

15 June 1942:
Departs Takao.

21 June 1942:
Arrives at Tokuyama, Yamaguchi Prefecture.

25 June 1942:
Departs Tokuyama.

26 June 1942:
Arrives at Osaka. Enters that same day Osaka Machinery Works K.K. shipyard for a refit.

25 July 1942:
Departs Osaka.

26 July 1942:
Arrives at Kure.

30 July 1942:
Departs Kure and arrives at Tokuyama later that same day.

3 August 1942:
Departs Tokuyama.

4 August 1942:
Arrives at Sasebo.

6 August 1942:
Departs Sasebo.

10 August 1942:
Arrives at Takao.

13 August 1942:
Departs Takao.

20 August 1942:
Arrives at Saipan, Marianas.

21 August 1942:
Departs Saipan.

27 August 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul, New Britain.

10 September 1942:
Departs Rabaul escorted part way by submarine chaser CH-28.

16 September 1942:
Arrives at Saipan.

17 September 1942:
Departs Saipan.

23 September 1942:
Enters Bungo Straits in a convoy also consisting of fleet oiler NARUTO and auxiliary oiler KOKUYO MARU.

24 September 1942:
Arrives at Kobe.

28 September 1942:
Departs Kobe.

29 September 1942:
Arrives at Yokkaichi, Mie Prefecture.

1 October 1942:
Currently assigned to Combined Fleet, 11th Air Fleet to perform troops and supply convoy missions to the Southeast Area.

6 October 1942:
Departs Yokkaichi.

7 October 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

14 October 1942:
Departs Yokosuka.

25 October 1942:
Arrives at Roi-Namur, Marshalls.

27 October 1942:
Transfers some cargo to auxiliary destroyer-tender KAMIKAZE MARU.

30 October 1942:
Departs Roi-Namur.

31 October 1942:
Arrives at Taroa Island, Marshalls.

9 November 1942:
Departs Taroa.

E 14 November 1942:
Arrives at Saipan.

17 November 1942:
Departs Saipan and arrives at Tinian, Marianas later that same day.

18 November 1942:
Departs Tinian.

25 November 1942:
Arrives at Yokkaichi.

5 December 1942:
Departs Yokkaichi.

6 December 1942:
Arrives at Tokyo. Departs later.

13 December 1942:
Departs Yokosuka.

20 December 1942:
Arrives at Tinian.

22 December 1942:
Departs Tinian.

28 December 1942:
Her owners are restyled to Mitsui Senpaku K.K. and her registry port to Tokyo.

30 December 1942:
Arrives at Roi.

4 January 1943:
Departs Kwajalein.

5 January 1943:
Arrives at Wotje.

7 January 1943:
Departs Wotje and later that day arrives at Taroa.

10 January 1943:
Departs Taroa.

11 January 1943:
Arrives at Mille.

13 January 1943:
Departs Mille.

14 January 1943:
Arrives at Emidj.

21 January 1943:
Departs Emidj.

27 January 1943:
Arrives at Truk.

4 February 1943:
At 0850 arrives at Saipan from Truk after sailing from Kwajalein and Emidj.

6 February 1943:
At 0600 departs Saipan. Later, off Tinian while unloading, NAGISAN MARU is hit by a torpedo launched by LtCdr (later Vice Admiral) Glynn R. Donaho's (USNA '27) USS FLYING FISH (SS-229). The transport is set afire, floods and is beached to prevent sinking. Two crewmen are KIA.

E 6-14 February 1943:
Auxiliary gunboat SHOEI MARU assists damaged NAGISAN MARU.

15 February 1943:
NAGISAN MARU is patched, refloated and arrives at Saipan with an ETA of 1800.

10 May 1943:
At 0600 departs Saipan.

19 May 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

May- November 1943:
Tsurumi, Yokohama. Undergoes extensive repairs at Asano Shipyard K.K.

25 May 1943:
Scheduled to be fitted with a machine-gun (unspecified type) lent by Yokosuka Naval District under Navy’s secret order No. 2679.

12 August 1943:
Fitted with a Type 3 hydrophone under Navy’s Secretary telegram No. 120-949.

1 October 1943:
Rerated as an auxiliary transport (Otsu) category. Merchant Captain Ishii Kameo is posted Supervisor. [2]

November 1943:
Repairs are completed.

7 November 1943:
At 1700 departs Yokohama in convoy No. 7107 also consisting of TOSEI, CHIYO, MITSU and CHIKUZEN MARUs escorted by minesweeper W-27.

9 November 1943:
Arrives at Tokuyama.

16 November 1943:
Departs Tokuyama.

20 November 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.

28 November 1943:
Departs Yokosuka for Truk in convoy No. 3128 also consisting of auxiliary transports KENRYU and SHOHO MARUs, auxiliary storeship HARUNA MARU and IJA transport REIYO MARU escorted by kaibokan FUKUE.

29 November 1943:
About 15 nms NW of Hachijo-Jima, Izu Shoto (Izu Islands), the convoy is intercepted by LtCdr (later Rear Admiral) Merrill K. Clementson’s (USNA ‘33) USS SNAPPER (SS-185). At 0905, Clementson torpedoes and hits KENRYU MARU at 33-19N, 139-34E. She is set afire and settles down by the bows. Burning furiously, she is abandoned and sinks the next day at 33-16N, 139-35E. Four crewmen are KIA. KENRYU MARU is the only vessel sunk in convoy No. 3128.

1 December 1943:
Arrives at Chichi-Jima, Ogasawara Gunto (Bonins).

3 December 1943:
Departs Chichi-Jima.

12 December 1943:
Arrives at Truk, Central Carolines.

18 December 1943:
At 1600, departs Truk in convoy No. 1182 also consisting of requisitioned cargo ship (B-AK) TSUNESHIMA MARU escorted by torpedo boat OTORI and subchaser CH-28.

20 December 1943:
NE of Manus Island, Admiralties. At 1537, LtCdr Robert J. Foley's (USNA ’27) USS GATO (SS-212) attacks and sinks TSUNESHIMA MARU at 01-26N, 148-36E. All of her crewmembers are rescued. CH-28 and OTORI conduct a counterattack, dropping a total of 19 depth-charges.

22 December 1943:
At 1020, the convoy is attacked by USAAF bombers. One bomb near misses NAGISAN MARU at 03-27S, 149-40E. At 2144, another airstrike targets the convoy. Four bombs fall nearby NAGISAN MARU causing some minor flooding at 03-50S, 151-23E.

23 December 1943:
At 1100, arrives at Rabaul, New Britain.

8 January 1944:
Departs Rabaul for Palau in convoy O-805 also consisting of IJA transports KOYO, PACIFIC, MEXICO and CEYLON MARUs escorted by subchasers CH-17 and CH-18. CEYLON MARU joined that day from Kavieng.

15 January 1944:
At 1230, arrives at Palau, Western Carolines.

26 January 1944:
Departs Palau in convoy NE-602 also consisting of fleet oiler TSURUMI escorted by patrol boat PB-2 and auxiliary subchaser CHa-26.

E 30 January 1944:
The escorts are detached at 130 degrees East longitude.

1 February 1944:
At 1600, arrives at Balikpapan, Borneo.

5 February 1944:
At 1030, departs Balikpapan in a convoy also consisting of fleet oiler TSURUMI, IJN shared tanker (B/C-AO) YAMAMIZU MARU and auxiliary oiler KYOEI MARU escorted by auxiliary subchasers CHa-36, CHa-37 and CHa-41.

6 February 1944:
At 0930, YAMAMIZU MARU is detached for Singapore and auxiliary subchasers CHa-36 and CHa-41 also are detached. At 1300, the convoy anchors off the Straits Lights.

7 February 1944:
At 0930, minesweeper W-11 is instructed to escort the convoy to Surabaya.

9 February 1944:
Arrives at Surabaya. Departs later.

15 March 1944:
At 0730, departs Balikpapan for Palau in an unnumbered convoy consisting of three echelons of seven ships escorted by destroyers HARUSAME and SHIRATSUYU, minesweeper W-36, subchaser CH-6 and auxiliary subchaser CHa-52.

NAGISAN MARU is in the first echelon also consisting of fleet oiler IRO and auxiliary oiler HISHI MARU No. 2. The second echelon consists of fleet oiler TSURUMI, auxiliary oiler KYOEI MARU and IJN requisitioned cargo ship (B-AK) RAIZAN MARU and the third echelon consists only of IJA transport HOKUTAI MARU.

16 March 1944:
At 1530, destroyer MICHISHIO joins the convoy and the other escorts depart.

20 March 1944:
At 0910, auxiliary subchasers CHa-51 and CHa-53 join the escort.

21 March 1944:
At 0930, auxiliary subchaser CHa-27 joins the escort.

22 March 1944:
LtCdr (later Cdr) John A. Scott's (USNA ’28) USS TUNNY (SS-282) SJ radar picks up a large convoy. At daybreak, Scott is maneuvering to gain an attack position when his radar picks up a destroyer at 14,000 yards. The destroyer sights the submarine and challenges USS TUNNY with a blinker. Scott ducks into a nearby rain squall and continues to close on the surface in conditions of poor visibility. Through the haze, he makes out a group of oilers and cargo ships.

Scott sets up and fires a full bow spread of six-torpedoes at two cargo ships at 07-22N, 132-08E. He and his crew see and hear hits on both, but suddenly, a small oiler, probably KYOEI MARU, appears out of the gloom and almost collides with USS TUNNY.

Scott sets up on destroyer MICHISHIO moving at high speed across USS TUNNY’s stern. He fires four Mark-18 electric torpedoes, then crash dives as depth charges from an auxiliary subchaser explode on his port quarter. During the next four hours, IRO is hit in the bow, forward of the bulkheads. The Japanese drop 87 depth charges on USS TUNNY, but without effect.

23 March 1944:
The convoy, including limping IRO, arrive at Palau.

30 March 1944: American Operation “Desecrate One”
Palau. The anchorage is attacked by F6F "Hellcats", SBD "Dauntless", TBF "Avenger" and SB2C "Helldivers" of Task Group 58. 1's USS ENTERPRISE (CV-6), USS BELLEAU WOOD (CVL-24) and USS COWPENS (CVL-25), TG 58. 2's USS BUNKER HILL (CV-17), USS HORNET (CV-12), USS MONTEREY (CV-26) and USS CABOT (CVL-28) and TG 58. 3's USS YORKTOWN (CV-10), USS LEXINGTON (CV-16), USS PRINCETON (CVL-23) and USS LANGLEY (CVL-27).

NAGISAN MARU is one of the many ships bombed and sunk that day. She slips beneath the surface at 07-17N, 134-25E taking down two crewmen.

10 May 1944:
Removed from the Navy’s list under internal order No. 654.


Authors notes :
[1] NRT is a ship's cargo volume capacity expressed in "register tons", one of which equals to a volume of 100 cubic feet (2.83 m3). It is calculated by subtracting non-revenue-earning spaces i.e. spaces not available for carrying cargo, for example engine rooms, fuel tanks and crew quarters, from the ship's gross register tonnage (GRT). Net register tonnage (NRT) is not a measure of the weight of the ship or its cargo, and should not be confused with terms such as deadweight tonnage or displacement.

[2] There were two categories of Zatsuyosen. (Ko) category with an IJN Captain as supervisor aboard and (Otsu) category without.

Thanks go to Gengoro S. Toda of Japan and Mr. Matthew Jones of Mississippi, USA.

Gilbert Casse, Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall


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