(IJN SETTSU prewar - colorized photo by Irootoko Jr)

IJN SETTSU: Tabular Record of Movement

© 2009 Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp

Revision 1

18 January 1909:
Kure Navy Yard. Laid down as the second of the two-ship KAWACHI-class dreadnought battleships.

1 February 1909:
Tentatively attached to the Kure Naval District.

30 March 1911:
Launched and named SETTSU

1 December 1911:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Tanaka Morihide (13)(former CO of ASAMA) is appointed Equipping Officer.

1 July 1912:
Completed and placed in the 1st reserve. Captain Tanaka is appointed CO.

28 August 1912:
Reclassified as a battleship.

1 December 1912:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Yamanaka Shibakichi (15) is appointed CO. Assigned to BatDiv 1.

10 February 1913:
Departs on her first training cruise, arrives at Mako, Pescadores, on 17th.

21 February 1913:
Departs Makung to patrol south China coast.

28 February 1913:
Returns to Sasebo.

11 April 1913:
Departs Inchon, Korea, to patrol south China coast.

22 April 1913:
Arrivs at Chinhae, Korea.

1 December 1913:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Kimura Takeshi (15) is appointed CO.

12 February 1914:
Departs Koniya harbor on Amami-Oshima Island, in company of KONGO and TSUKUBA.

18 February 1914:
Arrives at Chinhae.

28 August 1914: World War 1 Begins:
Departs Sasebo to patrol the sea lanes south of Japan, in the South China Sea and the Yellow Sea, as part of Japanís contribution to the war effort under the terms of the Anglo-Japanese Alliance.

18 August 1914:
Reassigned to First Fleet.

4 September 1914:
Returns to Sasebo in company of KAWACHI.

31 October -7 November 1914: -the Battle of Qingdao:
SETTSU and sister KAWACHI, with two dozen 12-inch guns between them, lead the Allied bombardment fleet during tthe Battle of Qingdao, the siege of Germany's well-fortified colony on the Shandong Peninsula. The attached British pre-dreadnought HMS TRIUMPH joins with four 10-inch and fourteen 7.5-inch guns. Also present are five Japanese pre-dreadnoughts,three armored cruisers, and a support armada of more than 100 vessels. After a week-long bombardment reduces most of fortifications, the allied land army takes Qingdao.

1 December 1914:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Nagata Yasujiro (15) is appointed CO. Reassigned to BatDiv 1 at First Fleet.

13 December 1915:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Kawahara Kesataro (17) is appointed CO. Reassigned to BatDiv 1, First Fleet.

1 December 1916:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Honda Chikatami (17) is appointed CO. Placed in the 2nd reserve.

1 December 1917:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Inutsuka Sukejiro (21) is appointed CO. Reassigned to BatDiv 2, First Fleet.

27 February 1918:
Departs Makung to patrol the Chinese coast, returning to Sasebo on 3 March.

23 July 1918:
Reassigned to BatDiv 1, First Fleet. During that period, four 3-in deck guns are replaced by two AA guns of the same caliber.

20 August 1918:
Reassigned to BatDiv 2, First Fleet. Reassigned to BatDiv 2, First Fleet.

9 October 1919:
Conversion to Imperial Inspection vessel. The works are completed by 4 November.

28 October 1918: 10th Naval Review:
Yokohama. Emperor Taisho takes the triumphal naval review aboard SETTSU.

10 November 1918:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Uchida Kosaburo (22) is appointed CO.

10 June 1919:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Furukawa Hiroshi (22) is appointed CO.

9 July 1919: 11th Naval Review:
Yokosuka. Emperor Taisho reviews the 26 warships that participate in the review.

3 June 1920:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Yokoo Hisashi (23) is appointed CO.

6 November 1919:
Placed in the 3rd reserve.

20 November 1919:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Imaizumi Tetsutaro (25) is appointed CO.

1 April 1920-31 August 1921:
At Kure Navy Yard. SETTSU is reboilered and her hull repaired.

20 November 1920:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Takemitsu Kazu (26) is appointed CO.

10 September 1921:
Placed in 1st reserve.

10 October 1921:
Reclassified as guard ship and training vessel.

20 November 1921:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Oyamada Shigezo (27) is appointed CO.

6 February 1922: The Washington Treaty:
Washington, DC. Japan, United States, Britain, France and Italy agree to limit the displacement and main armament of their capital ships, aircraft carriers and cruisers and to limit the total tonnage of their capital ships and carriers. Battleships and aircraft carriers are set at a ratio of 5:5:3 for the navies of Great Britain, the United States and Japan.

Kure. Originally slated for retention under the terms of the Washington Naval Treaty, SETTSU is "traded" for battleship MUTSU. SETTSU is disarmed and her weaponry and side armor are removed.

10 November 1922:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Matsudaira Morio (28) assumes joint command of SETTSU and IBUKI.

20 January 1923:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Taketomi Kanichi (27)(former XO of SETTSU) is appointed CO.

1 April 1923:
Placed in the 3rd reserve.

23 August 1923:
Still in reserve, SETTSU is used as an accommodation ship by Kure Sailor Corps.

1 October 1923:
Removed from the Navy List; reclassified as a Special Service vessel. Reattached to Kure Naval District. Placed in the 3rd reserve.

14 October 1923:
Placed in 4th reserve.

20 November 1923:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Matsumoto Takumi (29) is appointed CO.

1 April 1924:
SETTSU is converted into a target ship. One boiler room and center funnel are removed. Her armor is increased to be able to absorb hits from 203mm/8-inch shells and 30 kg/66 lb practice bombs. She now displaces 16,130 tons and is capable of only 16 knots.

19 April 1924:
Placed in the 1st reserve.

1 December 1924:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Migita Kumagoro (29) is appointed CO. Reassigned to the 3rd reserve.

20 April 1925:
An unknown officer is appointed CO.

1 June 1925:
Reassigned to the 1st reserve.

1 December 1925:
Reassigned to the 3rd reserve.

1 July 1926:
Reassigned to the 2nd reserve.

1 September 1926:
Reassigned to 1st reserve.

1 December 1926:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Sezaki Nihei (32) is appointed CO. Reassigned to the 4th reserve.

27 September 1928:
An unknown officer is appointed CO.

30 November 1929:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Chiya Sadae (34) is appointed CO.

1 December 1930:
An unknown officer is appointed CO.

18 April 1935:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Mizusaki Shojiro (38) is appointed CO.

October 1935 and 1937:
Radio-control is added allowing SETTSU to be maneuvered by operators on board destroyer YUKAZE. Deck, funnel and bridge armor are further increased to improve SETTSUís ability to survive hits.

1 December 1936:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Sakonjo Naomasa (40) is appointed CO.

1 August 1937:
Attached to Combined Fleet HQ.

Late August 1937:
Embarks a battalion of Sasebo 4th SNLF (approximately 1,000 men) destined for Shanghai.

29 August 1937:
Off Saddle Islands (Maan). The SNLF battalion is transferred to light cruiser NATORI and destroyer YAKAZE and ferried upriver.

20 July 1938:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Suzuki Chozo (40) is appointed CO.

15 November 1939:
Captain (Vice Admiral, posthumously) Harada Kaku (41) is appointed CO.

10 March 1940:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Kogure Gunji (41) is appointed CO.

After modifications, SETTSU is used to train carrier pilots. SETTSU is the stand-in for USS ARIZONA for torpedo-bomber pilots preparing for the raid on Pearl Harbor. Most bombers are based at Iwakuni and practice level bombing using SETTSU as a target ship. Since SETTSU is limited to the Western Inland Sea, due to the distance trainees can not participate in more than one dive bombing drill a day without interfering with their basic training.

11 October 1940: Imperial Naval Review:
Yokohama Bay. 98 warships are spread across Tokyo Bay for the Emperor's annual review of the fleet. Vice Admiral (later Admiral of the Fleet, posthumously) Yamamoto Isoroku (former CO of AKAGI), Commander-in-Chief, Combined Fleet, accompanies Emperor Hirohito (Showa) aboard battleship HIEI. SETTSU is in the No. 2 row with four battleships and destroyers of the 1st Squadron.

1 November 1940:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Izaki Shunji (42) is appointed CO.

28 November 1940:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Mori Tokuji (40) is appointed CO.

1 September 1941:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Matsuda Chiaki (44) is appointed CO.

Early December 1941:
Departs Formosa for the Philippines area, simulating radio traffic originating from Carrier Striking Force in an attempt to cover the departure of Nagumoís carriers from the Kuriles. SETTSU consecutively assumes the identity of all six fleet carriers plus RYUJO and ZUIHO.

During the Pacific War, the target ship was stationed in the Inland Sea, and used for bombing and torpedo training.

10 February 1942:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Ishii Keishi (43) is appointed CO.

20 May 1942:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Shimamoto Hisagoro (44) is appointed CO.

1 October 1942:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Nagai Mitsuru (45) is appointed CO.

2 February 1943:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Hase Shinzaburo (44) is appointed CO.

13 April 1943:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Sato Katsuya (44) is appointed CO.

2 June 1943:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Miura Kanzo (47) is appointed CO.

4 August 1943:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Soma Shinshiro (42) is appointed CO.

1 March 1944:
Attached temporarily to Vice Admiral Kakuta Kakujiís First Air Fleet.

March-June 1944:
Serves as target for 522nd and 762nd NAGs in the Inland Sea, cruising between Tokuyama and Oita. During that period some Type 93 13-mm AA machine guns are replaced by Type 96 25-mm twin AA guns. A hydrophone is installed and depth charges fitted.

5 May 1944:
Reassigned directly to the Combined Fleet.

1 June 1944:
Reattached to Combined Fleet HQ.

10 August 1944:
Reserve Captain Ofuji Masanao (39)(former CO of MAMIYA) is appointed CO.

3 January 1945:
Kure. SETTSU is assigned to target and aircraft training duties with carriers HOSHO and KAIYO and destroyer YUKAZE.

11 March 1945:
Departs Oita with carrier HOSHO and destroyer YUKAZE for target ship duty for Air Group 252.

19 July 1945:
Steams from Kure to a new location off Osu on the N coast of Etajima Island under her own power.

24 July 1945:
After 1500, SETTSU is attacked by some 30 Grumman F6F-3 Hellcat fighters. She receives a direct hit to the starboard side of the aft conning tower, killing two sailors and wounding two. A nearby boat is demolished as a result of this explosion. There are also five near misses, the closest of which opens a leak to the engine room on the starboard side.

Captain Ofuji decides that the damage cannot be repaired and runs his ship aground at Etajima. The hull develops a list to port.

After that date, all 25-mm AA guns and most provisions are landed. SETTSU is used as an ad hoc accommodation ship thereafter.

26 July 1945:
The gradual flooding causes SETTSU to ground on an even keel.

28 July 1945:
The already grounded SETTSU is attacked by three aircraft dropping bombs and making strafing runs. She receives two direct hits. The first bomb penetrates the deck starboard and aft of the bridge, exploding in No. 3 crew space. The second bomb hits on the port side approximately in the same area, but does not penetrate the upper decks.

29 July 1945:

15 August 1945:
Hostilities cease.

20 November 1945:
Removed from the Navy List.

June 1946-August 1947:
Hulk is raised and towed to Harimaís shipyard at Kure where it is scrapped.

Author's Notes:
Thanks go to Matthew Jones for help in identifying COs.

- Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp.

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