ZATSUYOSEN!

(NITTEI MARU, prewar)

IJN NITTEI MARU:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2012-2017 Gilbert Casse, Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall

Revision 2


E 1939:
Innoshima. Laid down by Osaka Iron Works K.K. shipyard as a 2,728-ton cargo ship for Nissan Kisen K.K., Tokyo. [1]

6 June 1940:
Launched and named NITTEI MARU.

21 January 1941:
Completed and registered in Tokyo.

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

5 August 1941:
Departs Sasebo.

E August 1941:
Operates in southern China waters.

12 August 1941:
Arrives at Mako, Pescadores. Transfers later to Takao, Formosa (now Kaohsiung, Taiwan).

16 August 1941:
Departs Takao.

E August-September 1941:
Operates in southern China waters.

12 September 1941:
Arrives at Yawata, Fukuoka Prefecture.

E September 1941:
Transfers to Sasebo.

22 September 1941:
Departs Sasebo.

E September-October 1941:
Operates in Chosen (Korea) waters.

13 October 1941:
Arrives at Sasebo.

15 October 1941:
Registered in the IJN as an auxiliary transport (Otsu) category under internal order No. 1256 and attached to the Yokosuka Naval District with Yokosuka as home port. [2]

5 November 1941:
Departs Mako.

E November 1941:
Operates in southern China waters.

4 December 1941:
Arrives at Moji.

11 December 1941:
Departs Sasebo.

14 December 1941:
Arrives at Mako.

19 December 1941:
Departs Mako.

22 December 1941:
Arrives at Sasebo.

25 December 1941:
Departs Sasebo.

26 December 1941:
Arrives at Kure.

29 December 1941:
Departs Kure with auxiliary transports KANAYAMASAN and TOEI MARUs. Escorted through Bungo Suido (Strait) by unknown units of the Kure Defense Force.

30 December 1941:
Steams off Miyakojima’s coast.

6 January 1942:
Arrives at Davao, Mindanao.

14 January 1942:
Departs Davao for Tarakan, Borneo.

17 January 1942:
Arrives at Tarakan carrying elements of the 2nd Construction Unit assigned to the capture of Balikpapan.

21 January 1942:
At 1700, Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Hirose Sueto's (39) Balikpapan Invasion Convoy departs Tarakan, Borneo with IJN transports NITTEI, ASAHISAN, TATSUGAMI, NANA, KANAYAMASAN, SUMANOURA, KUMAGAWA and TOEI MARUs and IJA transports KURETAKE, HAVANA, EHIME, LIVERPOOL, TEIRYU (ex-German AUGSBURG), HITERU, TSURUGA, HANKOW and NISSHO MARUs carrying the Balikpapan Invasion Force consisting of MajGen Sakaguchi Shizuo’s 56th Mixed Infantry Group (Sakaguchi Detachment) and the Kure No. 2 Special Naval Landing Force (SNLF) escorted by patrol boats PB-36, PB-37, PB-38, minesweepers W-15, W-16, W-17, W-18 and SubChasDiv 31's CH-10, CH-11 and CH-12.

Cover is provided by light cruiser NAKA with DesDiv 2's YUDACHI, SAMIDARE, MURASAME, HARUSAME, DesDiv 9's ASAGUMO, MINEGUMO, NATSUGUMO and DesDiv 24's KAWAKAZE and UMIKAZE. Seaplane tenders SANUKI and SANYO MARUs provide air cover.

Poor weather hampers air reconnaissance by ABDA (American-British-Dutch-Australian) forces, but ABDA Air finally locates the invasion force. Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) William A. Glassford's Task Force 5's light cruisers USS MARBLEHEAD (CL-12), USS BOISE (CL-47) and Cdr Paul H. Talbot's DesDiv 59's old destroyers USS PARROTT (DD-218), USS POPE (DD-225), USS JOHN D. FORD (DD-228) and USS PAUL JONES (DD-230) are ordered to stop the invasion force, but USS BOISE runs aground and USS MARBLEHEAD develops engine trouble. DesDiv 59 is detached and increases speed to arrive at Balikpapan at midnight on January 23rd.

23 January 1942: The Invasion of Balikpapan, Borneo:
Storms protect the invasion force until it is almost to Balikpapan. At 1050, the convoy is attacked by three enemy aircraft, which are repulsed. At 1625, nine Dutch Martin Model 166 (B-10) bombers and four light bombers from Samarinda attack and hit transports TATSUGAMI and NANA MARUs. The latter is hit in No. 6 hold by a bomb, splinters from others that land to port alongside the same hold add to the fires raised. Navigation became impossible and over the following hours the flames take a firm grip. At 1730, ‘Abandon Ship’ is ordered. Finally, at 2100, after a huge explosion, NANA MARU sinks at 01-18S, 117-43E. TATSUGAMI MARU, only slightly damaged, continues on to Balikpapan. At 2045, Hirose's invasion convoy arrives and anchors off Balikpapan. At 2130, the transports begin disembarking troops.

24 January 1942:
Cdr Talbot's DesDiv 59 arrives from the south. At 0316, they begin their first attack firing their 4-inch guns and launching ten torpedoes at the anchored transports, but all their torpedoes miss. Talbot orders another attack. At 0330, USS POPE (DD-225) hits and sinks transport SUMANOURA MARU. Only nine of her crew of navy sailors survive.

At 0332, USS JOHN D. FORD scores gunfire hits on ASAHI MARU whose hospital ship status is obscured by the darkness. At 0335, USS PARROTT (DD-218) and USS PAUL JONES (DD-230) hit transport TATSUGAMI MARU with torpedoes in a deep fuel tank, the resultant flooding cause her to sink by the stern in Balikpapan Bay at 01-18 S, 117-04E, and four of her crew lose their lives.

USS POPE and USS PARROTT also sink the 2nd Base Force's patrol boat PB-37 with torpedoes and gunfire. At 0345, FORD sinks transport KURETAKE MARU with gunfire and torpedoes. Six crewmen and 272 troops are KIA. ASAHISAN MARU suffers damage from gunfire and torpedoes, but remains afloat. KUMAGAWA MARU suffers slight damage in the engagement. NITTEI MARU is not hit. At 0350, their torpedoes gone, DesDiv 59 departs southward. The Japanese Force seizes Balikpapan.

25 January 1942:
Departs Balikpapan.

10 February 1942:
Arrives at Davao.

15 February 1942:
Departs Davao.

18 February 1942:
Arrives at Palau, Western Carolines.

20 February 1942:
Transfers to Garasumao, Babeldaob, Palaus.

23 February 1942:
Departs Garasumao.

2 March 1942:
Arrives at Chichi-Jima, Ogasawara Gunto (Bonins). Departs later that same day.

4 March 1942:
Calls at Hachijo-Jima, Ogasawara Gunto (Bonins) and departs later that day for Japan.

5 March 1942:
Arrives at Yokohama.

6 March 1942:
Departs Yokohama.

7 March 1942:
Arrives off Oshima, Yamaguchi Prefecture.

8 March 1942:
Departs Oshima waters.

9 March 1942:
Arrives at Tanoura, Miyagi Prefecture.

10 March 1942:
Transfers to Hikoshima, Shimonoseki Prefecture.

25 March 1942:
Transfers to Mogi. Departs later that day for Chinnampo, Chosen.

28 March 1942:
Arrives at Chinnampo.

30 March 1942:
Departs Chinnampo.

1 April 1942:
Arrives at Sakito.

2 April 1942:
Transfers to Sasebo.

6 April 1942:
Transfers to Saitozaki.

10 April 1942:
Departs Saitozaki.

11 April 1942:
Arrives at Oshima anchorage.

12 April 1942:
Transfers to Yokkaichi, Mie Prefecture.

15 April 1942:
Transfers to Oshima anchorage.

16 April 1942:
Departs Oshima.

17 April 1942:
Arrives at Tsuzaki-Hana, Fukui Prefecture. Transfers later that day to Moji.

18 April 1942:
Departs Moji.

19 April 1942:
Arrives at Osaka.

24 April 1942:
Departs Osaka.

25 April 1942:
Arrives at Hesaki, Kyushu. Transfers later in the day to Moji.

26 April 1942:
Departs Moji.

28 April 1942:
Arrives at Chinnampo.

30 April 1942:
Departs Chinnampo.

5 May 1942:
Arrives at Takao.

11 May 1942:
Departs Takao.

12 May 1942:
Arrives at Kirun, Formosa (now Keelung, Taiwan).

13 May 1942:
Departs Kirun.

16 May 1942:
Arrives off Japan West coast.

17 May 1942:
Departs Japan West coast.

19 May 1942:
Arrives at Wada-misaki, near Kobe. Departs later that day.

20 May 1942:
Arrives at Oshima anchorage. Transfers later in the day to Yokkaichi.

23 May 1942:
Departs Yokkaichi.

24 May 1942:
Arrives at Tokyo.

28 May 1942:
Departs Tokyo in an unnumbered convoy also consisting of IJA transports KANSEISHI, ECHIZEN, TAKAO, KOWA and MOMOKAWA MARUs and DAIBOSHI MARU No. 6, IJN requisitioned tanker KOSHIN MARU and IJN requisitioned cargo JINMU MARU escorted by converted escort (ex-survey ship) KOMAHASHI.

31 May 1942:
Arrives at Ominato, Aomori Prefecture.

2 June 1942:
Transfers to Hakodate, Hokkaido.

4 June 1942:
Departs Hakodate.

5 June 1942:
Arrives at Otaru, Hokkaido. Departs that same day for Odomari, Mie Prefecture.

13 June 1942:
Departs Odomari.

15 June 1942:
Arrives at Muroran, Hokkaido.

17 June 1942:
Departs Muroran.

19 June 1942:
Arrives at Yokohama. Transfers later that day to Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture.

21 June 1942:
Transfers to Tokyo.

25 June 1942:
Departs Tokyo in an unnumbered convoy also consisting of civilian cargo ships SEIKAI and HEIWA MARUs, IJA transports KATSURAGISAN and NORWAY MARUs and FUKUEI MARU escorted by destroyer OKIKAZE. [3]

E 26 June 1942:
OKIKAZE detaches from convoy to join another convoy.

27 June 1942:
Arrives at Ominato.

28 June 1942:
Transfers to Hakodate.

30 June 1942:
Departs Hakodate for the Kuriles.

11 July 1942:
Arrives at Tennei, Etorofu Island (now Burevestnik, Iturup), Kuriles.

12 July 1942:
Departs Tennei for Japan.

13 July 1942:
Arrives at Kushiro, Hokkaido.

14 July 1942:
Departs Kushiro.

17 July 1942:
Arrives at Chinnai, Karafuto (now Krasnogorsk, Sakhalin).

19 July 1942:
Departs Chinnai.

23 July 1942:
Arrives at Tokyo.

26 July 1942:
Departs Tokyo.

29 July 1942:
Arrives at Otaru.

30 July 1942:
Departs Otaru.

31 July 1942:
Arrives at Chinnai.

3 August 1942:
Departs Chinnai.

8 August 1942:
Arrives at Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture.

10 August 1942:
Rerated as an auxiliary collier under internal order No. 1485. Remains attached to the Yokosuka Naval District with Yokosuka as home port. Tactically assigned to Combined Fleet, 5th Fleet. Departs Nagoya that same day.

23 August 1942:
At 1500 arrives at Nagoya.

25 August 1942:
At 1200 departs Nagoya.

26 August 1942:
At 1200 arrives at Yokosuka.

9 September 1942:
Departs Yokosuka.

12 September 1942:
At 0200 arrives at Muroran.

15 September 1942:
Arrives at Ominato.

E 16-22 September 1942:
Loads 2,000 drums of aviation gasoline.

23 September 1942:
Departs Ominato for the Kuriles.

E September 1942:
Arrives at Kataoka Wan (Bay), Shimushu Island (now Zaliv Kozyrevskogo, Ostrov Shumushu). Probably unloads part of avgas cargo for the IJN airbase (Imaizaki Airfield). Departs later for the Aleutians.

3 October 1942:
Arrives at Kiska. Probably unloads part of avgas cargo.

11 October 1942:
Departs Kiska for the Kuriles.

E October 1942:
Arrives at Kashiwabara, Paramushiro Island (now Severo-Kurilsk, Paramushir). Probably unloads remaining avgas cargo for the IJA airfield. Departs later for Japan.

20 October 1942:
Arrives at Ominato.

24 October 1942:
Departs Ominato.

25 October 1942:
Arrives at Muroran.

26 October 1942:
Transfers to Hakodate.

29 October 1942:
Departs Hakodate.

30 October 1942:
Arrives at Ominato. Spends all of November in port.

29 November 1942:
Scheduled to be fitted with AA machine-guns (MGs).

E December 1942:
Probably fitted with AA MGs (type and number unknown).

15 December 1942:
At 0510 departs Ominato and at 1330 arrives at Hakodate. Likely docked (see above entry).

17 December 1942:
At 0750 departs Hakodate and at 1600 arrives at Ominato.

20 December 1942:
At 0800 departs Ominato for the Kuriles.

25 December 1942:
At 1100 arrives at Paramushiro.

6 January 1943:
At 0730 arrives at Kiska.

E January 1943:
Departs Paramushiro.

22 January 1943:
At 1800, arrives at Ominato.

E February 1943:
Assigned to convoy No. 9 - transportation of materials for the Navy – Paramushiro ~ Kiska.

23 February 1943:
Departs Ominato.

24 February 1943:
Arrives at Hakodate.

27 February 1943:
Departs Hakodate for Ominato.

2 March 1943:
At 1930 departs Ominato.

3 March 1943:
Arrives at Muroran.

7 March 1943:
Departs Muroran.

10 March 1943:
At 1000 arrives at Shibaura, Tokyo.

13 March 1943:
Departs Shibaura, Tokyo.

16 March 1943:
Arrives at Otaru.

20 March 1943:
Departs Otaru.

21 March 1943:
At 1430 arrives at Hakodate.

22 March 1943:
At 0700 departs Hakodate.

25 March 1943:
At 1700 arrives at Shibaura, Tokyo.

27 March 1943:
Departs Shibaura, Tokyo.

30 March 1943:
Arrives at Muroran.

2 April 1943:
At 0630 departs Muroran.

3 April 1943:
At 0540 arrives at Hachinohe and departs at 1300.

5 April 1943:
At 1840 arrives at Tokyo.

11 April 1943:
At 0730 departs Tokyo and at 1310 arrives at Yokosuka.

15 April 1943:
At 0830 departs Yokosuka and at 1000 arrives at Yokohama.

14 May 1943:
Departs Yokosuka.

16 May 1943:
Arrives at Kushiro, Hokkaido.

1 June 1943:
Scheduled to be fitted with one Siemens 75 cm searchlight and its related Vickers PVC Type 5 socket, under instruction No. 2780-1.

16-20 June 1943:
Fitting of the above equipment is made at Kushiro.

16 June 1943:
At 1800 arrives at Kushiro.

21 June 1943:
At 0800 departs Kushiro.

24 June 1943:
At 0900 arrives at Paramushiro.

4 July 1943:
At 0900 departs Paramushiro.

9 July 1943:
At 1200 arrives at Otaru.

10 July 1943:
At 1200 departs Otaru.

12 July 1943:
At 1400 arrives at Ominato. Transfers later to Aomori.

15 July 1943:
At 0800 departs Ominato.

19 July 1943:
At 2200 scheduled to depart Tennei.

21 July 1943:
At 2100 scheduled to arrive at Otaru.

31 July 1943:
At 1345 arrives at Otaru and departs at 1500.

1 August 1943:
At 1200 arrives at Aomori. Remains tactically assigned to Vice Admiral Kawase Shiro’s (38) 5th Fleet.

6 August 1943:
Departs Aomori.

17 August 1943:
At 1000 departs Paramushiro.

21 August 1943:
Arrives at Otaru.

24 August 1943:
Departs Otaru.

26 August 1943:
Arrives at Ominato.

31 August 1943:
Departs Ominato for the Kuriles. May have sailed part way with MAMIYA MARU that was heading for Sakhalin. [4]

6 September 1943:
At 1000, arrives at Kataoka, Paramushiro-To.

12 September 1943:
Strafed by American aircraft that damage the rigging.

16 September 1943:
At 0330 departs Kataoka, Paramushiro and at 1000 arrives at Musashi Wan.

26 September 1943:
At 1200, arrives at Otaru.

29 September 1943:
Departs Otaru.

30 September 1943:
Arrives at Aomori.

E October 1943:
Transfers to Ominato.

6 October 1943:
At 1100 departs Ominato for the Kuriles.

7 October 1943:
At 0900 arrives at Otaru.

9 October 1943:
At 1700 departs Otaru.

13 October 1943:
At 1030 arrives at Paramushiro-To.

25 October 1943:
At 1530 departs Paramushiro.

30 October 1943:
At 0700 arrives at Otaru.

2 November 1943:
Departs Otaru sailing at 10 knots.

3 November 1943:
At 0835 arrives at Ominato.

16 November 1943:
At 1000 departs Ominato.

19 November 1943:
At 2300, departs Otaru at 9.5 knots for Musashi Wan (Bay) escorted by kaibokan HACHIJO.

23 November 1943:
At 0900, arrives at Musashi Wan.

27 December 1943:
Departs Kataoka Wan.

1 January 1944:
At 0800 arrives at Otaru.

5 January 1944:
At 1000 departs Otaru.

6 January 1944:
At 1200 arrives at Ominato.

29 January 1944:
At 0700 departs Ominato.

5 February 1944:
At 1305 departs Tokuyama.

6 February 1944:
At 1230 arrives at Osaka.

7 February 1944:
At 0900 departs Osaka.

9 February 1944:
At 0700 arrives at Tokuyama.

12 February 1944:
At 0700 departs Tokuyama.

13 February 1944:
At 1900 arrives at Sasebo.

15 February 1944:
At 1500 departs Sasebo.

19 February 1944:
At 1600 arrives at Ominato.

21 February 1944:
Departs Ominato and later that day arrives at Muroran.

26 February 1944:
Departs Muroran and later that day arrives at Ominato.

6 March 1944:
Departs Ominato escorted by kaibokan ISHIGAKI.

11 March 1944:
Arrives at Matsuwa Jima.

30 March 1944:
Departs Matsuwa Jima.

4 April 1944:
Arrives at Kushiro.

7 April 1944:
Departs Kushiro.

8 April 1944:
Arrives at Ominato.

13 April 1944:
Departs Ominato.

15 April 1944:
At 0721 arrives at Kushiro with destroyer USUGUMO.

16 April 1944:
At 0900 departs Kushiro escorted by destroyer USUGUMO.

21 April 1944:
At 1105 arrives at Kataoka Wan.

25 April 1944:
At 0230 departs Kataoka Wan escorted by destroyer USUGUMO. Arrives and departs Suribachi Wan and arrived later that day at Musashi Wan escorted by USUGUMO and auxiliary submarine chasers CHa-77, CHa-73 and CHa-68.

28 April 1944:
At 1400 departs Musashi Wan with destroyer USUGUMO.

3 May 1944:
At 1200 arrives at Kushiro and departs at 1900.

4 May 1944:
Ominato. Enters drydock for maintenance.

14 May 1944:
Undocked.

28 May 1944:
At 1200 departs Ominato.

29 May 1944:
At 1120 arrives at Otaru.

6 June 1944:
At 1400 departs Otaru for northern Kuriles in convoy Ki-603 also consisting of auxiliary transport CHOWA MARU escorted by auxiliary gunboat SHINKO MARU No. 2 and destroyers WAKABA and HATSUHARU.

11 June 1944:
At 0654 arrives at Kataoka Wan, Paramushiro Island.

18 June 1944:
Assigned to the Kuriles Defense Forces under Instruction No. 105.

1 July 1944:
Assigned to Vice Admiral Totsuka Michitaro’s (38) Northeastern Area Fleet under Instruction No. 34.

6 August 1944:
Departs Ominato for the northern Kuriles.

E August 1944:
Arrives in northern Kuriles waters carrying the 144th Air Defense Unit.

E August-September 1944:
Departs northern Kuriles waters for Japan.

5 September 1944:
Departs Musashi Wan in a convoy also consisting of UMEKAWA and HAKUYO MARUs escorted by kaibokan HACHIJO.

13 September 1944:
Arrives at Otaru.

E October 1944:
Arrives at Odomari, Mie Prefecture.

15 October 1944:
Departs Odomari for the Kuriles in convoy Ki-403 also consisting of unidentified ships and escorts.

18 October 1944:
Arrives at Kataoka Wan (Bay).

25 October 1944:
Musashi Wan (Bay), Paramushiro-To. Damaged by a bomb hit from USAAF’s North American B-25 “Mitchell” aircraft that floods hold No. 2. The ship is later protected by auxiliary subchaser CHa-209.

5 November 1944:
Tactically assigned to Ominato Guard District.

6 November 1944:
Undergoes temporary repairs at Musashi Wan.

7 November 1944:
Departs Musashi Wan.

8 November 1944:
Arrives at Kataoka.

30 November 1944:
Departs Kataoka for Japan.

4 December 1944:
Arrives at Otaru.

9 December 1944:
Departs Otaru.

10 December 1944:
Arrives at Ominato.

E December 1944:
Undergoes hull extensive repairs.

30 December 1944:
Departs Ominato.

31 December 1944:
Arrives at Muroran.

4 January 1945:
Departs Muroran.

6 January 1945:
Noto Peninsula NE tip, Ishikawa Prefecture. Probably under fog, runs aground Himeshima reef at 37-30N, 137-22E; NITTEI MARU breaks from the bridge in two parts. All crew takes shelter aft.

8 January 1945:
All crew is rescued by small ship NOSHU MARU and auxiliary subchaser BANSHU MARU No. 53.

10 January 1945:
NITTEI MARU’s aft part sinks.

10 March 1945:
Removed from the Navy’s list under internal order No. 232.


Authors Notes:
[1] Not to be confused with another (identity is uncertain) NITTEI MARU (1,000 GRT (e) sunk 25 May 1945 off Borneo.

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

[3] Many ships were named FUKUEI MARU. The identity of the one in this convoy is unknown.

[4] This ship has not been formally identified.

Thanks go to Gengoro S. Toda of Japan.

-Gilbert Casse, Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall


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