KYUHEIKAN!


(Cargo ship by Takeshi Yuki scanned from "Color Paintings of Japanese Warships")

IJN TATSUGAMI MARU:
Tabular Record of Movement

© 2009-2010 Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp and Peter Cundall.


7 March 1939:
Kobe. Laid down at Mitsubishi Shipbuilding as a 7,064-ton cargo ship for Tatsuuma Kisen K. K. of Nishinomiya, Japan.

3 August 1939:
Launched and named TATSUGAMI MARU.

31 October 1939:
Completed.

14 September 1941:
Requisitioned by the IJN.

15 September 1941:
Kobe. Begins conversion to an auxiliary ammunition ship at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. shipyard.

20 September 1941:
Registered as an auxiliary transport ship in the Maizuru Naval District.

23 October 1941:
Completes the conversion. Attached to the 11th Naval Air Fleet.

1 December 1941:
Departs Sasebo.

4 December 1941:
Arrives at Takao.

6 December 1941:
Departs Takao.

10 December 1941:
Arrives at Palau.

17 December 1941:
TATSUGAMI MARU and 11 transports depart Palau with Rear Admiral Tanaka's Southern Philippines Attack Force's RYUJO, CHITOSE, NAGARA and DesRon 2 covered by CruDiv 5ís MYOKO and HAGURO.

19-20 December 1941:
CruDiv 5 supports the invasion landings at Davao.

7 January 1942: The Invasion of Dutch Borneo:
Rear Admiral Hiroseís Tarakan Invasion Force departs Davao. The convoy includes Army transports TSURUGA, LIVERPOOL, HAVANA, KURETAKE, NICHIAI, HITERU, TEIRYU, HANKOW and EHIME MARUs carrying MajGen Sakaguchi Shizuoís 56th Mixed Infantry Group and Kure No. 2 Special Naval Landing Force (SNLF), and navy transports KUNIKAWA, KANO, KAGU, KOKUYO, NISSHO and RAKUTO MARUs. The escort is provided by Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Nishimura Shojiís DesRon 4ís light cruiser NAKA with DesDiv 2ís HARUSAME, SAMIDARE, YUDACHI and MURUSAME, DesDiv 9ís ASAGUMO and MINEGUMO, NATSUGUMO and DesDiv 24ís UMIKAZE, KAWAKAZE, YAMAKAZE and SUZUKAZE. 21st Air Flotilla tenders SANUKI and SANYO MARUs provide air cover.

Hirose's force also includes MineSweepDiv 11ís W-16, W-15, W-13, W-14, MineSweepDiv 30ís W-17 and W-18, SubChasDiv 31ís CH-10, CH-11 and CH-12, patrol boats P-36, P-37 and P-38 and other auxiliary ships.

11 January 1942:
Rear Admiral Hirose's Force invades Tarakan, Borneo.

21 January 1942:
Rear Admiral Hirose's Balikpapan Invasion Convoy departs Tarakan departs Tarakan, Borneo with Navy transports TATSUGAMI, NANA, KANAYAMASAN, SUMANOURA, KUMAGAWA, TOEI, ASAHISAN and NITTEI MARUs and army transports KURETAKE, HAVANA, EHIME, LIVERPOOL, TEIRYU, HITERU, TSURAGU, HANKOW, NISSHO MARUs carrying the Balikpapan Invasion Force consisting of the Sakaguchi Detachment (56th Regimental Group) and Kure No. 2 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), BOISE (CL-47) and Cdr Paul H. Talbot's DesDiv 59's old destroyers PARROTT (DD-218), POPE (DD-225), JOHN D. FORD (DD-228) and PAUL JONES (DD-230) are ordered to stop the invasion force, but BOISE runs aground and 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 1525, nine Dutch Martin Model 166 (B-10) bombers from Samarinda attack and hit transports TATSUGAMI and NANA MARUs. The latter is abandoned and later sinks. 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. At 0335, PARROTT (DD-218) and PAUL JONES (DD-230) torpedo and sink already damaged TATSUGAMI MARU in Balikpapan Bay at 01-18 S, 117-04E. At 0350, their torpedoes gone, DesDiv 59 departs southward. [1]

5 February 1942:
Removed from the Navy List.


Authorís Note:
[1] At 0345, USS JOHN D. FORD sinks transport KURETAKE MARU with gunfire and torpedoes. Two other transports suffer damage from gunfire and torpedoes but remain afloat. USS POPE and PARROTT sink the 2nd Base Force's patrol boat PB-37 with torpedoes and gunfire.

- Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp and Peter Cundall.


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