(Sister YAMAYURI MARU, prewar), prewar)

Tabular Record of Movement

© 2014-2017 Bob Hackett

Dumbarton, Scotland. Laid down by Archibald McMillan & Son, as Yard No 448, a 4,999-ton cargo ship for Stoomvaart Maatschappij Rotterdam (Wm. Ruys & Zonen), Netherlands.

7 March 1913:
Launched and named CEYLON.

August 1913

Sold to Matsuoka Kisen K. K., Fuchu. Renamed TONEGAWA MARU.

5 March 1931:
TONEGAWA MARU departs Geraldton, Australia for Fremantle after loading 77,597 bags of wheat.

17 December 1931:
Departs Fremantle, Australia for the United Kingdom.

16 March 1936:
Arrives at Auckland, New Zealand from Japan.

20 August 1941:
Requisitioned by the Imperial Army as a troop transport/cargo ship. Assigned Army No. 218.

12 May 1942:
Released backed to her owners.

16 June 1942:
TONEGAWA MARU departs Tokyo Bay in a westbound convoy also consisting of KURETAKE and NANMAN MARUs, NISSHIN MARU No. 2 and TOYO MARU No. 1 escorted by minesweeper W-18 that is detached off Daio Zaki.

31 March 1943:
At 1915, TONEGAWA MARU departs Tomie, Goto Retto in convoy “A” (outbound) also consisting of FUKUEI, KITSURIN, KIYO, TAKETOYO and UNZEN MARUs escorted by minelayer TAKASHIMA.

2 April 1943:
AKETOYO MARU is detached off the China coast for Singapore. At 1900, convoy “A” arrives at Woosung.

14 April 1943:
At 1400, TONEGAWA MARU departs Woosung in convoy SHI-3 also consisting of HAKOZAKI, KENAN, MALAY, MISAKI, TONEGAWA, TOYOURA, UGA and WAZAN MARUs and MIKAGE MARU No. 8 escorted by minelayer KAMOME.

17 April 1943:
At 1200, arrives at Mutsure.

E 24 April 1943:
TONEGAWA MARU departs Hokkaido for Tokyo in convoy No. 2425 also consisting of HANASAKI, KOWA, MASAJIMA and YUZAN MARUs escorted by minesweeper W-26.

E 25 April 1943:
Arrives at Tokyo.

12 June 1943:
Re-requisitioned by the IJA.

10 September 1943:
TONEGAWA MARU departs Saeki for Palau in convoy O-008 also consisting of CLYDE, KAMOI, KIBI, NISSHU, TONEI, TSUYAMA and UCHIDE MARUs escorted by destroyer HARUKAZE, torpedo boat SAGI, minelayer YURIJIMA, auxiliary gunboat CHOUN MARU, auxiliary patrol boat NITTO MARU No. 12.

11 September 1943:
110 degrees and 80 miles off the Toi promontory. At 0150 hours, LtCdr Joseph W. Wilkins' (USNA '33) USS SPEARFISH (SS-190) torpedoes TSUYAMA MARU, carrying 1,000 military personnel and military supplie, at 30-56N, 132-47E, She settles by the stern and navigation becomes impossible. Five men are KIA. YURIJIMA and SAGI tow TSUYAMA MARU back to Saeki. Later, she is towed to Osaka, undergoes permanent repairs and is returned to duty as a transport.

September 1943:
Arrives at Palau, Carolines.

3 October 1943:
TONEGAWA MARU departs Palau in convoy “Hollandia No. 1” also consisting of KAMOI and UCHIDE MARUs and SHINSEI MARU No. 5 escorted by subchaser CH-34.

6 October 1943:
Arrives at Hollandia, New Guinea.

7 October 1943:
Departs Hollandia with the addition of NAGANO MARU.

10 October 1943:
Subchaser CH-35 joins the convoy.

11 October 1943:
Arrives at Palau.

21 December 1943:
At 0200, TONEGAWA MARU departs s Kau, Halmahera for Manokwari, New Guinea in convoy No. 2 also consisting of KENWA and HIYORI MARUs escorted by destroyer WAKATAKA. The convoy is carrying the second echelon of the IJA's 36th Division.

23 December 1943:
Arrives at Manokwari. Unloads troops and cargo.

24 December 1943:
The convoy departs Manokwari carrying troops, including men from the 222nd Infantry, 36th Division, a tank unit in the 36th Division, the 51st Field Construction Unit, the 41 Specially Established Land Duty Company and others.

26 December 1943:
At 1530, arrives at Sarmi, New Guinea. The ships are unloaded by elements of the 11th Debarcation Unit.

29 December 1943:
At 1400, the convoy departs Sarmi.

2 January 1944:
Arrives at Kau, Halmahera, Moluccas.

6 January 1944:
TONEGAWA MARU departs Wasile, Halmahera for Cebu in a convoy also consisting of KENWA, ODATSUKI and MITSUKI MARUs escorted by patrol boat P-103 and subchasers CH-36 and CH-45. BENGAL, RYUSEI and TOUN MARUs and one unidentified merchant also steam with the convoy for Manila.

9 January 1944:
Arrives at Davao.

20 January 1944:
At 0900, TONEGAWA MARU departs Manila in convoy H-14 to Kau, Halmahera also consisting of ADEN, KENWA, KUROGANE, MOJI, MITSUKI, RYOCHI and UGO MARUs escorted by patrol boat P-103 and subchaser CH-46.

22 January 1944:
At 1150, arrives at Cebu, Philippines.

23 January 1944:
At 0900, departs Cebu.

27 January 1944:
At 1456, arrives at Kau.

30 January 1944:
At 0650, TONEGAWA MARU departs Kau in a convoy also consisting of KENWA and MOJI MARUs escorted by minelayer WAKATAKA.

1 February 1944: At 1235, arrives at Ambon, Moluccas.

14 February 1944:
At 1400, TONEGAWA MARU departs Halmahera for Manila in convoy M-12 also consisting of FUSO, KENWA, KUROGANE, MITSUKI, MIZUHO and WALES MARUs escorted by patrol boat PB-105 and minesweeper W-4.

16 February 1944:
At 0145, KENWA MARU is attacked unsucessfully by a submarine, probably LtCdr (later Captain) Henry G. Munson's (USNA ’32) USS CREVALLE (SS-291). At 2000, W-4 is detached.

19 February 1944:
Arrives at Cebu.

21 February 1944:
Departs Cebu.

22 February 1944:
Arrives at Manila.

5 March 1944:
Arrives at Manila.

7 March 1944:
TONEGAWA MARU departs Takao for Moji in convoy TAMO-08 also consisting of ADEN, MITSUKI, MEXICO, MIZUHO and WAZAN MARUs and three unidentified merchant ships escorted by destroyers HASA and TSUGA.

8 March 1944:
Arrives at Kirun (Keelung).

13 March 1944:
Departs Kirun. The convoy splits into two parts after departing port.

17 March 1944:
The first part arrives at Moji.

18 March 1944:
The second part arrives at Moji.

15 April 1944:
At 0600, TONEGAWA MARU departs Yokosuka in convoy "Higashi-Matsu No. 6". The convoy consists of AWA, AWAJI, BATAVIA, HAKUBA, HOKUSHIN, KATSUKAWA and TAKAOKA MARUs bound for Saipan, CHOAN MARU No. 2 and MIKAGE MARU No. 1 bound for Truk, , BISAN, JINSAN and JOKUJA MARUs bound for Palau, KAMISHIMA and SHOZAN MARUs bound for Woleai, INARI and TONEGAWA MARUs bound for Guam and TATSUAKI and TAMAHOKO MARUs bound for Chichi-Jima. The convoy is escorted by destroyers HOKAZE, YUNAGI, UZUKI, kaibokan MIYAKE and CD-6, minelayers KYOSAI, SARUSHIMA and YURIJIMA, minesweepers W-20, W-28 and subchasers CH-10 and CH-12

23 April 1944:
At 0600, arrives at Saipan. TONEGAWA and INARI MARUs, destroyer UZUKI, minelayer SARUSHIMA and minesweeper W-20 are detached for Guam.

27 April 1944:
At 1140, TONEGAWA MARU departs Saipan in Rear Admiral Matsuyama Mitsuharu's (40)(former CO of KITAKAMI) 7th Convoy Escort Group's convoy “Higashi Matsu” No. 6 (return) also consisting of AZUCHISAN, AWAJI, HOKUSHIN, KATSUKAWA, SHOUN, SHOZUI, TAKAOKA, TATEBE and TOAN MARUs and four unidentified ships escorted by destroyer HOKAZE (F), kaibokan AMAKUSA, MIYAKE, CD-6, CD-10, minelayer SARUSHIMA and an unidentified warship.

4 May 1944:
Arrives at Tokyo Bay.

10 July 1944:
At 0500, TONEGAWA MARU departs Yokosuka in convoy No. 3710 also consisting of DAIJI, EIKO, NISSHU, TAISEI and TONEGAWA MARUs and TOKAI MARU No. 4 escorted by destroyers HATSUHARU and WAKABA, kaibokan AMAKUSA and CD-12, minesweeper W-27and auxiliary subchaser FUMI MARU.

12 July 1944:
At 1500, TONEGAWA, NISSHU and TAISEI MARUs, destroyer HATSUHARU and kaibokan AMAKUSA and CD-12 are detached for Iwo Jima.

13 July 1944:
Bonin Islands. At 0726, LtCdr Albert L. Becker's (USNA ’34) USS COBIA (SS-245) fires three torpedoes and gets two hits that sink storeship DAIJI MARU, loaded with 960 tons cement, 420 tons coal, 200 tons baggage and 644 passengers including the main body of the 204th Naval Construction Unit, at 27-27N, 140-32E. 344 passengers, 15 Armed Escort and 29 crewmen are killed. W-27, destroyer WAKABA and auxiliary subchaser FUMI MARU counter-attack and drop 45 depth charges on USS COBIA, but Becker evades without damage to his boat. Later that day, the remaining ships of convoy No. 3710 arrive at Chichi Jima.

16 July 1944:
TONEGAWA MARU departs Chichi Jima in convoy No. 3716 also consisting of EIKO and TAISEI MARUs escorted by destroyers HATSUHARU and WAKABA and kaibokan AMAKUSA and CD-12 and minesweeper W-27.

19 July 1944:
At 1025, convoy No. 3716 arrives at Yokosuka.

29 July 1944:
TONEGAWA MARU departs Tateyama for Chichi-jima in convoy No. 3729 also consisting of ENJU, HOKKAI, KYUSHU, SHOGEN and TONEGAWA MARUs and UNKAI MARU No. 7 and fast transports T-2 and T-4 escorted by destroyer escort MATSU, flagship of the 2nd Convoy Escort Group's Commander Rear Admiral Takahashi Ichimatsu (40)(former CO of TSUGARU), destroyer HATAKAZE, kaibokan CD-4 and subchasers CH-52 and CH-51.

That same day, light carrier ZUIHO escorted by destroyer FUYUTSUKI sorties from Yokosuka to provide air and anti-submarine cover for the convoy.

1 August 1944:
Ogasawara (Bonin) Islands. Convoy No. 3729 arrives at Futami Harbor, Chichi-jima. Upon arrival some of the cargo ships depart for Iwo Jima. Bad weather causes delays in unloading. ZUIHO and FUYUTSUKI, after maintaining position near the lzu Shichi Islands, make for the West Inland Sea.

4 August 1944:
About 0930, an air raid warning is received from Tokyo. All ships proceed to sea in convoy No. 4804. From 1030 on, the convoy is attacked by three waves of aircraft of Rear Admiral (later Admiral) Joseph J. Clark's (USNA ’17) (former CO of USS YORKTOWN, CV-10) Task Group 58.1. The first wave attacks the convoy 20 miles NW of Chichi-Jima. Destroyer HATAKAZE suffers rudder damage. At about 1100, kaibokan CD-4 is near-missed by bombs fore and aft to starboard. She suffers slight damage with two men KIA. The Japanese claim shooting-down several aircraft.

In the second raid, ENJU MARU is sunk with the loss of 52 crewmen and 21 passengers. The third strike occurs between 1600 and 1630, during which the majority of the ships succumb to torpedo attacks from both sides of the convoy. CD-12 incurs some damage. After organizing the rescue of the convoy’s survivors, flagship MATSU leads the still intact escort group and TONEGAWA MARU, the lone surviving cargo ship, northwards.

At 1254, Rear Admiral (later Admiral) Laurance T. DuBose's Task Unit 58.1.6 consisting of CruDiv 13’s USS SANTA FE (F) (CL-60), MOBILE (CL-63), BILOXI (CL-80) and OAKLAND (CL-95), DesDiv 100’s COGSWELL (DD-651), INGERSOLL (DD-652) and KNAPP (DD-653) and DesDiv 91’s IZARD (DD-589), CHARRETTE (DD-581), BURNS (DD-588) and BROWN (DD-546) is detached to sink the cripples.

At 1800, CD-4 sights DuBose's warships closing from the south. Rear Admiral Takahashi Ichimatsu (40) orders CD-4 to protect TONEGAWA MARU and continue fleeing while his flagship MATSU attempts to draw off the Americans. At 1930, MATSU is taken under fire and sunk by shell fire of USS COGSWELL, USS INGERSOLL and USS KNAPP at 27-40N, 141-48E. Rear Admiral Takahashi is KIA as are all but six of MATSU's crew. He is promoted Vice Admiral, posthumously.

N end of the Ogasawara Islands. Carrier aircraft and gunfire from light cruiser USS MOBILE sink TONEGAWA MARU at 27-40N,141-48E. 83 crewmen and 61 troops are KIA. HATAKAZE, CD-4, CD-12, and subchaser CH-51 escape.

Author’s Note:
No data were found on TONEGAWA MARU's movements from '42 to March '43. Readers with access to such data are requested to post the information on the Discussion and Questions board or j-aircraft.org's IJN Ship Message Board

Author's Note:
Thanks go to the late John Whitman for info on troops carried by TONEGAWA MARU.

Bob Hackett

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