(YUBARI in 1932 - Colorized by Irootoko, Jr)
© 1997-2018 Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp
5 June 1922:
Laid down at Sasebo Navy Yard.
1 March 1923:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Sugiura Masao (30)(former
ComDesDiv 26) is appointed the Chief Equipping Officer (CEO).
5 March 1923:
Launched and named
31 July 1923:
Completed at the Sasebo Navy Yard. Attached to Sasebo
Naval District. Captain Sugiura is the CO.
1 September 1923:
Following the Great Kanto Earthquake, YUBARI ferries
refugees from Yokohama to other areas.
10 September 1923:
Crown Prince Hirohito embarks YUBARI for an tour in
1 December 1923:
Reassigned to CruDiv 3, First Fleet. Captain (later
Rear Admiral) Yamaguchi Nobuichi (31)(former XO of HIRATO) is appointed the CO.
Rebuild at Sasebo. YUBARI's funnel is elevated by about 6
10 November 1924:
Cdr (promoted Captain 1 December; Rear Admiral,
posthumously) Tomioka Aijiro (32)(former CO of IRO) is appointed the CO.
1 December 1924:
Placed in reserve at Sasebo.
6 April 1925:
Departs Yokosuka for an extended cruise in the western
Pacific, refueling from Captain (later Rear Admiral) Nagai Minoru's (32) oiler
SATA en route.
Late April 1925:
US Navy Fleet Problem V (Grand Joint Exercise 3) in
Hawaiian waters. Off Oahu, YUBARI briefly shadows the "Blue Fleet" under Admiral
Samuel Robinson (USNA '03). Reportedly, three American destroyers give chase,
but fail to overtake the Japanese cruiser.
23 June 1925:
Returns to Sasebo.
4 August 1925:
Temporarily attached to Mako (Makung) Naval Station,
20 October 1925:
Reassigned as flagship of Rear Admiral Sakamoto
Teiji's (28)(former CO of KITAKAMI) DesRon 2. Captain (Vice Admiral,
posthumously) Anno Kiyoshi (33)(former CO of KAMOI) is appointed the CO.
1 December 1925:
Reattached to Sasebo Naval District.
1 November 1926:
Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Kida Shinpei
(32)(former CO of TENRYU) is appointed the CO.
1 December 1927:
Captain Morita Shigefusa (33)(former ComDesDiv 25)
is appointed the CO.
30 November 1929:
Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Kawana Torao
(34)(former CO of TATSUTA) is appointed the CO of YUBARI and IZUMO
(until 5 February 1930) as additional duty.
15 November 1930:
Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Hara Seitaro
(35)(former CO of HAYATOMO) is appointed the CO.
1 December 1931:
Reassigned as flagship of Captain (later Vice
Admiral) Arichi Jugoro's (33)(former CO of HARUNA) DesRon 1. Captain (later
Rear Admiral) Saito Jiro (36)(former ComDesDiv 5) is appointed the CO.
4 September 1931-23 January 1932:
Refit and modernization at Kure
8 February 1932:
Shanghai. At noon, two Japanese river steamers
proceed up the Whangpoo, escorted past the forts by three destroyers and
disembark a Japanese mixed brigade. At 1400, light cruiser YUBARI opens fire
on Woosung village from the Whangpoo, and the bombardment of Woosung by YUBARI
and eight destroyers at practically point blank range continues through the
afternoon, while at the same time the mixed brigade attacks Woosung village and
forts from the south. Eventually a defensive position on the south bank is
occupied. The Woosung forts make no reply, except with machine-gun fire. At
about 1900 the firing on Woosung ceases. YUBARI, light cruiser TATSUTA and
destroyers keep up the bombardment of Woosung, and there is more or less
continual bombardment and bombing in the Chapei-Hongkew area. Ex-Armored cruiser
IZUMO, flying the flag of Vice-Admiral Nomura, comes up river and takes gunboat
ATAKA's place alongside the Japanese consulate-general. ATAKA shifts alongside
ex-armored cruiser TOKIWA at the Japanese naval buoys.
9 February 1932:
The bombardment of Woosung by YUBARI and destroyers,
the fighting in the Chapei-Hongkew area, and aerial bombing continues
throughout the day.
22 March 1932 to 31 January 1933:
Repair and refit at Sasebo Navy
Yard. The 8-cm HA gun mount is landed and torpedo mounts are fitted with spray
13 November 1933:
Placed in reserve at Sasebo.
15 November 1933:
Placed in reserve at Sasebo. Captain (later Rear
Admiral) Kiyomiya Ko (39)(former CO of ERIMO) is appointed the CO.
11 December 1933:
Attached to Sasebo Guard Squadron.
17 May to 20 July 1934:
Rebuild at Sasebo Navy Yard. The mine shed is
removed and additional ballast fitted.
15 November 1934:
Reattached to Yokosuka Naval District. Captain
(later Vice Admiral), the Marquis, Daigo Tadashige (40)(former ComSubDiv 19)
is appointed the CO.
25 May 1935:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Harada Seiichi (39)(former
CO of ERIMO) is appointed the CO.
9 July to 15 November 1935:
Refit at Yokosuka Navy Yard. Two 13.2-mm
Type 93 twin AA machine guns are installed and both 5-cm Yamanouchi type
saluting guns resited. Powerplant is repaired.
31 October 1935:
Captain Yamamoto Masao (38)(former ComDesDiv 22)
is appointed the CO.
15 November 1935:
Reassigned as flagship of DesRon 5, replacing
18 November 1935:
Departs Mako to patrol off Shanghai with DesDiv 13
1 December 1936:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Hirose Sueto
(39)(former ComDesDiv 6) is appointed the CO.
Patrols off Shanghai.
August 1937: The Evacuation of Japanese residents in South China:
Japanese residents in South China are under the protection of Rear Admiral
(later Vice Admiral) Okuma Masakichi's (37) DesRon 5, composed of flagship
YUBARI, DesDiv 16 (FUYO, KARUKAYA, WAKATAKE) at Mawei, DesDiv 13's KURETAKE at
Swatow and SANAE at Canton. DesRon 5 is assigned to protect about 12,000
Japanese residents in Fuchow, Amoy, Swatow and Canton. With the outbreak of
the North China Incident, DesDiv 16 is dispatched to the north. DesDiv 5 from
Mako and DesDiv 29 from Japan are put under the command of Rear Admiral Okuma.
12 August 1937:
The situation in South China shows a drastic change
for the worse. Residents in Swatow start evacuation that day. After the clash in
Shanghai, residents in Canton begin evacuating on 15 August and those in Fuchow
on 17 August. All of them reach Formosa safely. The evacuation of residents from
Amoy, delayed for various reasons, is completed in late August.
20 October 1937:
Supports the landing at Hanzhou with DesRon 5.
15 November 1937:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Hori Yugoro (41)(former
CO of NARUTO) is appointed the CO.
1 December 1937:
Reassigned as the flagship of DesRon 5, replacing
7 December 1937:
Placed in reserve at Yokosuka.
14 January to 31 March 1938:
Refit at Yokosuka.
20 July 1938:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Miyazato Shutoku
(40)(former Naval Navigation School instructor) is appointed the CO.
15 December 1938:
Captain (later Rear Admiral) Kouda Takero (41)(former
CO of JINGEI) is appointed the CO of YUBARI and NARUTO (until 20 December) as
4 March 1939:
Reattached to Ominato Naval District.
20 July 1939:
Departs Ominato for Sakhalin waters.
4 October 1939:
Returns to Ominato.
10 October 1939:
Reassigned to Yokosuka Naval District as a
1 November 1939:
Captain (later Vice Admiral) Kamata Michiaki
(39)(current CO of ASHIGARA) is appointed the CO of YUBARI as additional duty.
15 November 1939:
Captain (Vice Admiral, posthumously) Edo Heitaro
(40)(former CO of KAKO) is appointed the CO.
1 November 1940:
Captain (Vice Admiral, posthumously) Ban Masami
(42)(former ComdesDiv 6) is appointed the CO.
15 November 1940:
Reassigned as flagship of DesRon 6.
2 February 1941:
Departs Yokosuka for a cruise in Saipan, Palau, Truk
and Kwajalein areas.
14 April 1941:
Returns to Yokosuka.
20 April-1 May 1941:
Drydocked at Yokosuka. External degaussing
coil is fitted.
25 May 1941:
Departs Yokosuka for a cruise in Mandates Islands area.
25 October 1941:
Arrives at Truk.
29 November 1941:
Truk. YUBARI is the flagship of Rear Admiral (Vice
Admiral, posthumously) Kajioka Sadamichi's (39)(former CO of KISO) DesRon 6.
Departs Truk for Kwajalein with DesDiv 29's ASANAGI, OITE, YUNAGI and
HAYATE and DesDiv 30's KISARAGI, MUTSUKI, YAYOI and MOCHIZUKI.
2 December 1941: Operation "Z":
DesRon 6 receives the signal
"Niitakayama nobore (Climb Mt. Niitaka) 1208" from the Combined Fleet. This
signifies that X-Day hostilities will commence on 8 December (Japan time).
3 December 1941:
DesRon 6 arrives at Roi-Namur, Kwajalein.
8 December 1941: The Invasion of Wake Island:
DesRon 6 departs
Roi-Namur with Rear Admiral Kajioka's Wake Island Attack Force's CruDiv 18 light
cruisers TATSUTA and TENRYU, DesDiv 29's OITE and HAYATE, DesDiv 30, two
converted destroyer transports, submarine depot ship JINGEI, armed merchant
cruiser KONGO MARU and transport KINRYU MARU.
11 December 1941:
Captain Ban's YUBARI and three destroyers close to
within 4,500 yards of Wake Island to bombard American positions. At 0615, Marine
1st Lt Clarence A. Barninger's Battery "A" 5-inch guns open fire. YUBARI is
straddled, but not hit. She opens the range to 5,700 yards and is straddled
twice more, but not hit.
Two miles SW of Wake Island. HAYATE, OITE and ASANAGI close to bombard
Wilkes Island, but HAYATE takes three direct hits from salvos of Marine 2nd Lt
John A. McAlister's Battery "L" 5-inch guns. At 0652, HAYATE blows up and sinks
with her entire 168-man crew at 19-16 N, 166-37 E. Battery "L" also scores a
near-miss that damages OITE.
DesDiv 30's YAYOI, MUTSUKI and KISARAGI close to bombard both Wilkes and
Peale Islands. 1st Lt Woodrow W. Kessler's Battery "B" 5-inch guns on Peale open
fire and score a hit on YAYOI.
30 miles SW of Wake. At 0724, a Marine Grumman F4F-3 "Wildcat" strafes
TENRYU and damages three torpedoes in her forward torpedo mount. Another
"Wildcat" strafes TATSUTA, raking her radio shack with machine-gun fire.
Captain Henry T. Elrod, USMC, hits KISARAGI with a 100-lb. bomb that
probably detonates her depth charges. At 0731, she blows up and sinks with her
entire crew of 150 at 18-55 N, 166-17 E.
That morning, a dejected Rear Admiral Kajioka orders his Attack Force to
return to Kwajalein.
13 December 1941:
Arrives at Roi.
21 December 1941: The Second Invasion of Wake Island:
Departs Roi with
the rest of Attack Force. The Attack Force is joined by CarDiv 2's HIRYU and
SORYU, Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Abe Hiroaki's (39) (former CO of FUSO)
CruDiv 8's TONE and CHIKUMA, DesDiv 17's URAKAZE and TANIKAZE detach from Vice
Admiral (Admiral, posthumously) Nagumo Chuichi's (36) (former CO of KIRISHIMA)
Pearl Harbor Striking Force enroute to Japan.
The Attack Force is also joined by Rear Admiral (Vice Admiral,
posthumously) Goto Aritomo's (38) ((former CO of MUTSU) CruDiv 6's AOBA,
KINUGASA, KAKO and FURUTAKA, CruDiv 18's KIYOKAWA MARU and DesDiv 29's ASANAGI
The greatly reinforced Attack Force now consisting of two fleet carriers,
a seaplane tender, six heavy cruisers, two light cruisers and 11 destroyers
sorties from Roi in support of the second invasion's troop transports.
23 December 1941:
After a magnificent, but hopeless stand, Wake's
grossly outnumbered garrison is overwhelmed and forced to surrender.
29 December 1941:
YUBARI arrives at Kwajalein.
31 December 1941:
Departs Kwajalein with the Attack Force.
3 January 1942:
Arrives at Truk. One 13.2-mm Type 93 twin AA machine
gun in a provisional mounting is fitted to each side of the bridge. Two 5-cm
Yamanouchi type saluting guns from amidships are landed.
14 February 1942:
Rear Admiral Kajioka's YUBARI departs Truk with
seaplane tender KIYOKAWA MARU and four destroyers.
15 January 1942:
Arrives at Lamotrek Atoll.
17 January 1942:
Departs Lamotrek. En route, the YUBARI group joins
MineDiv 19's minelayers OKINOSHIMA and TSUGARU and two destroyers escorting
transports that left Guam on 14 January.
That same day, Vice Admiral (Admiral, posthumously) Nagumo Chuichi's
Carrier Striking Force departs Truk consisting of CarDiv 1's AKAGI and KAGA,
CruDiv 5's SHOKAKU and ZUIKAKU, BatDiv 3/1 HIEI and KIRISHIMA, CruDiv 8's TONE
and CHIKUMA and DesRon 1's light cruiser ABUKUMA with DesDiv 17's ISOKAZE,
URAKAZE, TANIKAZE, HAMAKAZE, DesDiv 18's ARARE, KASUMI, KAGERO, SHIRANUHI and
20 January 1942: - Operation "R" - The Invasions of Rabaul and Kavieng:
N of New Ireland. CarDivs 1 and 5 launch 100 bombers and fighters to attack
Rabaul, New Britain and Kavieng, New Ireland. That evening, CarDiv 5 is detached
and moves to a position in the Bismarck Sea.
20 January 1942:
CarDiv 1's AKAGI and KAGA launch air strikes against
Rabaul and Kavieng.
21 January 1942:
CarDiv 1 launches another strike on Rabaul and
CarDiv 5 launches attacks on Madang, Lae and Salamaua, New Guinea. After CarDiv
5 recovers her aircraft, she departs the Bismarck Sea area that evening to
rendevous with CarDiv 1.
22 January 1942:
CarDiv 1 launches a 45-plane strike against Rabaul.
After the launch, CarDiv 5 rendevouses with CarDiv 1. When CarDiv 1 completes
recovery of her strike aircraft, Nagumo heads north to Truk.
22/23 January 1942:
New Britain. Soon after midnight, OKINOSHIMA lands
invasion troops at Blanche Bay, Rabaul. The invasion forces swiftly overcome
light Australian opposition and occupy both Rabaul and Kavieng.
27 January 1942:
After the seizure of the harbor, YUBARI arrives at
8 February 1942:
14 February 1942:
Arrives back at Rabaul.
20 February 1942:
Departs Rabaul in an attempt to intercept Vice
Admiral Wilson Brown's (USNA ‘02) Task Force 11.
23 February 1942:
Arrives at Truk.
27 February 1942:
Departs Truk for Rabaul.
1 March 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul with CruDiv 6.
5 March 1942:
YUBARI departs Rabaul at 1300 with DesDiv 29's OITE,
ASANAGI and YUNAGI and DesDiv 30's MUTSUKI, YAYOI and MOCHIZUKI. They join Rear
Admiral Goto's CruDiv 6's AOBA, KINUGASA, KAKO and FURUTAKA, and Rear Admiral
(later Vice Admiral) Marumo Kunimori's (40) (former CO of ASHIGARA) CruDiv 18's
TENRYU and TATSUTA and KIYOKAWA MARU.
8 March 1942: Operation "SR" - The Invasion of Lae-Salamaua:
cover for the invasion while cruising off Salamaua.
10 March 1942:
The anchored invasion task group is attacked by 90
aircraft from Rear Admiral (MOH/later Admiral) Frank J. Fletcher's (USNA '06)
Task Force 17's USS YORKTOWN (CV-5) and LEXINGTON (CV-2). Fletcher's planes have
flown from the Coral Sea over New Guinea's Owen Stanley mountains to make the
attack. Armed merchant cruiser KONGO MARU, transport YOKOHAMA MARU and auxiliary
minelayer TENYO MARU are sunk. Transport KOKAI MARU, minelayers TSUGARU and
OKINOSHIMA, seaplane tender KIYOKAWA MARU, destroyers ASANAGI and YUNAGI and
auxiliary minesweeper TAMA MARU No. 2 are damaged in the raid.
At the start of attack YUBARI patrols between Lae and Salamaua, later
heading out for Huon Gulf. She is first attacked by two SBD-3 "Dauntless"
dive-bombers from LEXINGTON’s VS-2, claiming one hit, but actually score several
near misses to port while bomb fragments cut down several 13.2-mm AA machine-gun
crews. YUBARI is next strafed by four F4F-3 fighters from VF-3, approaching from
port bow. The XO, Cdr Tanaka Mitsuo and several bridge lookouts are killed.
After 0950 (local), YUBARI is attacked by SBD-3s from USS YORKTOWN’s
VB-5. No. 2 turret ready-use powder bags detonate as a result of strafing,
igniting the mattresses fitted to the bridge for anti-splinter protection. The
next strafing attack from the bow direction ignites the port lifeboat gasoline
drums stowage, resulting in a serious fire amidships. One 13.2-mm machine gun is
disabled by strafing. Firefighting teams dump most of the burning drums
overboard, but their hoses do not cover the entire danger area and the fire
reaches the forward torpedo mount. The CO orders the torpedoes jettisoned, but
the mount cannot be trained outboard as a result of a power failure. The rescue
crews manage to rotate the mount manually and extract the torpedoes using a
pulley. The reserve torpedoes are dumped in the same fashion.
In all, YUBARI evades 67 bombs and 12 torpedoes while receiving five near
misses that cause splinter damage in 3,000 locations. A total of thirteen
sailors are KIA and 49 wounded.
13 March 1942:
Departs Salamaua for Rabaul.
14 March 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul.
20 March 1942:
Rabaul. After 0745, YUBARI is bombed by four Boeing
B-17 "Flying Fortresses". Four near misses off her stern open three splinter
holes about 8 inches wide in her hull plating and damage two smoke generators,
one of which is later repaired.
22 March 1942:
Departs Rabaul for Truk with DesDiv 29's ASANAGI, OITE
25 March 1942:
Arrives at Truk for battle-damage repairs and refit.
Additional armor is fitted to compass bridge sides and overhead. One anchor
(amidships), one 20-foot dinghy and two depth-charge throwers are landed. A
fresh coat of paint is also applied.
10 April 1942:
Refit is completed.
30 April 1942:
Departs Truk for Rabaul.
2 May 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul.
4 May 1942: Operation "MO" - The Invasion of Tulagi and Port Moresby:
DesRon 6's YUBARI is flagship of Rear Admiral (Vice Admiral, posthumously)
Kajioka Sadamichi's (39)(former CO of KISO) Port Moresby Invasion Group with
DesDiv 29's OITE and ASANAGI, DesDiv 30's MUTSUKI and YAYOI and destroyers UZUKI
and MOCHIZUKI and unidentified patrol boats. Departs Rabaul with Rear Admiral
(later Vice Admiral) Abe Koso’s (40)(former CO of HIEI) Transport Unit,
consisting of minelayer TSUGARU, IJN transports MOGAMIGAWA, AKIHASAN, CHOWA,
GOYO AND SHOKAI MARUs and IJA transports CHINA, DAIFUKU, ASAKASAN, MARSUE
(MATSUE), MITO and NICHIBI MARUs repair ship OJIMA and oilers HOYO MARU and IRO
escorted by five minesweepers. Steams toward the Jomard Pass, Louisiade
Archipelago, to an area off Misima Island.
Solomons. That same day, Fletcher's Task Force 17 attacks Rear Admiral
(later Vice Admiral) Shima Kiyohide's (39) Tulagi Invasion Force. SBD
"Dauntless" dive-bombers and TBD "Avenger" torpedo-bombers from YORKTOWN sink a
destroyer, three minesweepers and damage four other ships.
5 May 1942:
Fletcher's force turns N to engage Vice Admiral (Admiral,
posthumously) Takagi Takeo's (39) Carrier Strike Force. SBDs and TBDs from
YORKTOWN and LEXINGTON sink Rear Admiral Goto's light carrier SHOHO off Misima
Island. In turn, Japanese planes damage oiler USS NEOSHO (AO-23) and sink
destroyer SIMS (DD-409).
6 May 1942:
Port Moresby, New Guinea. RAAF Consoldated PBY "Catalina"
flying boat No. A24-20, piloted by Squadron Leader Geoff Hemsworth and his 8-man
crew, takes off on a daylight reconnaissance mission.
Off Misima Island, 3 miles S of Cape Ebola. A 0422 (Z), Hemsworth
signals that he has "sighted two Japanese destroyers and is being attacked by
Japanese aircraft at 10-40S, 152-29E." Nothing further is received from the
PBY. In all likelihood the aircraft were Mitsubishi
F1M2 "Pete" biplane float fighters from seaplane tender KAMIKAWA MARU.
7 May 1942:
Rear Admiral Kajioka takes most of the escort away from
the convoy to try to find and attack Allied forces believed to be near Jomard
Passage. Kajioka turns over direct command of the convoy to Captain Inagaki
Yoshiaki (CO of TSUGARU), who leads it north out of danger.
At 1550, YUBARI is attacked by three B-17 bombers. They drop 4 bombs, but
all miss. Later that evening, she discovers a small group of survivors from
SHOHO and takes them aboard.
8 May 1942:The
Battle of the Coral Sea:
Scout reconnaisance aircraft from
LEXINGTON sight the Strike Force's SHOKAKU and ZUIKAKU. SBDs from YORKTOWN and
LEXINGTON damage SHOKAKU and force her retirement. ZUIKAKU's air group suffers
heavy losses. Carrier bombers and attack planes attack Task Force 17 and damage
YORKTOWN. LEXINGTON is further damaged and has to be scuttled. The Battle of the
Coral Sea halts the Japanese thrust toward Port Moresby and they are forced to
cancel Operation MO.
13 May 1942:
After cancellation of Operation MO, YUBARI arrives at
15 May 1942:
17 May 1942:
Arrives at Truk.
19 May 1942:
Departs Truk for Yokosuka.
23 May 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Drydocked until 15 June. Additional
armor is fitted for reserve torpedoes. The crew is rotated.
19 June 1942:
Departs Yokosuka for Truk.
23 June 1942:
Arrives at Truk.
29 June 1942:
Departs Truk with the DesDiv 30's UZUKI escorting AZUMA
MARU, AZUMASAN MARU and HOKUROKU MARU to Guadalcanal. YUBARI carries a Special
Naval Landing Force (SNLF) and an airfield construction unit.
6 July 1942:
Arrives at Guadalcanal. Disembarks SNLF and an airfield
construction unit. Departs for Truk the same day.
10 July 1942:
Arrives at Truk. DesRon 6 is deactivated. YUBARI is
assigned to the Fourth Fleet, No. 2 Surface Escort Force with DesDiv 29's
ASANAGI, OITE, YUNAGI and YUZUKI.
14 July 1942:
The IJN undergoes a major reorganization. The Eighth
Fleet is created under Vice Admiral Mikawa Gunichi (38)(former CO of KIRISHIMA)
and based at Rabaul.
15 July 1942:
Departs Truk with DesDiv 29.
17 July 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul. Around that time her middle turbine
develops blade trouble, limiting the maximum speed of YUBARI to 26 knots on two
7 August 1942: American Operation "Watchtower" - The Invasion of
Guadalcanal, British Solomon Islands:
Rear Admiral (later Admiral) Richmond
K. Turner's (USNA '08) Amphibious Task Force 62, covered by Vice Admiral
Fletcher's (USNA '06)Task Force 61 and Rear Admiral (later Admiral) John S.
McCain's (USNA '06) Task Force 63's land-based aircraft, lands MajGen (later
Gen/MOH/Commandant) Alexander A. Vandegrift's 1st Marine Division on Florida,
Tulagi, Gavutu, Tanambogo and Guadalcanal opening the campaign to retake the
YUBARI departs Rabaul through "Slot" towards Guadalcanal with TENRYU and
DesDiv 29's YUNAGI. Joins CruDiv 6's AOBA, FURUTAKA, KINUGASA and KAKO and
CruDiv 4's CHOKAI with Vice Admiral Mikawa and his staff embarked.
9 August 1942: The
Battle of Savo Island.
St. George's Channel, New Britain. LtCdr
(later Captain) Henry G. Munson's (USNA '32) USS SS-38 sights the cruiser force,
but is unable to attack.
In a night gun and torpedo action off Savo Island, Captain William G.
Greenman's ASTORIA (CA-34), Captain Samuel N. Moore's QUINCY (CA-39), Captain
(later Rear Admiral) Frederick L. Riefkohl's VINCENNES (CA-44) and Captain Frank
E. Getting's cruiser HMAS CANBERRA are sunk and Captain Howard D. Bode's CHICAGO
(CA-29) is damaged. CHOKAI takes three hits, KINUGASA two and AOBA one hit.
Enroute back to Kavieng, KAKO is sunk by LtCdr John R. Moore's USS SS-44. YUBARI
is not damaged in the action.
During the action against Allied Northern Force YUBARI, FURUTAKA and
TENRYU form the Japanese western group. YUBARI briefly engages USS RALPH TALBOT
(DD-390), scoring several hits. At 0223, Vice Admiral Mikawa orders all his
forces to withdraw.
10 August 1942:
Arrives at Rabaul.
15 August 1942:
Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Hirai Taiji
(43)(former ComDesDiv 24) is appointed the CO. Captain Ban is reassigned as CO
18 August 1942:
20 August 1942:
Arrives at Truk.
26 August 1942: The capture of Ocean and Nauru islands:
for Nauru with YUNAGI, escorting the converted transport HAKOZAKI MARU.
31 August 1942:
Following the landings at Nauru and Ocean islands,
YUBARI proceeds to Jaluit.
3 September 1942:
Departs Jaluit for Truk.
5 September 1942:
Arrives at Truk.
10 September 1942:
Departs Truk to patrol in Marshalls-Gilberts area.
24 September 1942:
Returns to Truk.
25 September 1942:
Departs Truk, escorting a convoy to Palau.
30 September 1942:
Arrives at Palau.
13 October 1942:
Departs Palau for Philippines with another convoy.
21 October 1942:
Returns to Palau.
22 October 1942:
Departs Palau for Truk.
26 October 1942:
Departs Truk for Tarawa.
30 October 1942:
Arrives at Tarawa. Temporarily reassigned as
guardship at Tarawa.
30 November 1942:
Departs Tarawa for Japan.
5 December 1942:
Arrives at Saipan, refuels.
6 December 1942:
Departs Saipan for Yokosuka.
9 December 1942:
Arrives at Yokosuka.
16-26 February 1943:
Drydocked. The middle turbine set is repaired.
Two 13.2-mm twin AA machine guns abreast the bridge are replaced by 25-mm Type
96 twin mounts. Probably all portholes and scuttles below middle deck level are
sealed. An E27 radar detector probably is also installed.
22 March 1943:
Refit is completed. Departs Yokosuka for Truk.
28 March 1943:
Arrives at Truk.
29 March 1943:
Departs Truk escorting repaired seaplane tender
KAMIKAWA MARU bombed at Shortland on 1 February.
1 April 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul. Attached to Vice Admiral, the Baron,
Samejima Tomoshige's (37)(former CO of NAGATO) Eighth Fleet/Southeast Area
Fleet at Rabaul. Guardship and training duties. Reassigned as flagship of Rear
Admiral (Vice Admiral, posthumously) Akiyama Teruo's (41)(former CO of NAKA)
3 May 1943:
Captain Funaki Morie (48)(former CO of TATSUTA) is
appointed the CO. Captain Hirai is later reassigned as the CO of NATORI.
30 June 1943: American Operation "Toenails" - The Invasion of New
Rear Admiral Turner's Third Fleet Amphibious Force, supported by
land-based aircraft, lands Marines and Army troops on Rendova and other islands
in the New Georgia area, Solomons. That same day, YUBARI departs Rabaul.
1 July 1943:
Arrives at Buin, Bougainville.
2-3 July 1943:
YUBARI bombards the American landing beachead at
Rendova Island with destroyers NIIZUKI, MIKAZUKI, YUNAGI, MOCHIZUKI, NAGATSUKI,
HATSUYUKI, SATSUKI and AMAGIRI. The bombardment achieves little effect. The
beachead is also attacked by IJN and IJA aircraft.
The bombardment group is engaged by motor torpedo boats USS PT-156,
PT-157 and PT-161, but they inflict no damage. ComDesRon 3 Rear Admiral
Akiyama's flagship NIIZUKI and three other destroyers counter-attack and take
the PT-boats under fire, but the PTs escape under a smoke screen. The destroyers
suffer no damage in the engagement.
5 July 1943:
When arriving at Buin, YUBARI strikes a Mark-12 aerial
mine dropped by a Grumman TBF "Avenger" torpedo-bomber. Her forward food store
and fresh water tank are flooded. 26 sailors are wounded. YUBARI's speed is
reduced to 22 knots thereafter.
6 July 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul. Undergoes temporary repairs by repair
ship YAMABIKO MARU.
10 July 1943:
Reattached to Eight Fleet HQ for the duration of
16 July 1943:
Departs Rabaul for Japan, making stops at Truk and
19 July 1943:
Arrives at Truk. Undergoes more temporary repairs.
Concrete is poured to damaged compartment for hull strengthening.
24 July 1943:
27 July 1943:
Arrives at Saipan, then departs for Yokosuka.
30 July 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka.
1 August-16 October 1943:
At Yokosuka. Repairs and refit.
1-12 September 1943:
Drydocked at Yokosuka. The aft 140-mm single
mount is replaced by a triple 25-mm Type 96 AA mount. One 90-cm Sperry type
searchlight on the bridge is replaced by a Type 22 surface search radar. A Type
93 Mk. 4 sonar and a Type 93 hydrophone are installed.
18 October 1943:
Departs Yokosuka for Hashirajima-Kure area for
27 October 1943:
Departs Kure for Rabaul.
3 November 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul.
4 November 1943:
Departs with destroyers MINAZUKI and ISOKAZE to
assist transport KIYOSUMI MARU damaged the day before in an attack by 19 USAAF
13th Air Force B-24 "Liberator" bombers on convoy "Tei No. 4" inbound from
Shanghai. KIYOSUMI MARU, carrying 1,342 reinforcement troops of the IJA 17th
Division, is under tow by light cruiser ISUZU escorted by light cruiser NAKA and
YUBARI removes 196 troops and three field guns from KIYOSUMI MARU. ISUZU
removes 196 troops and four regimental guns and NAKA removes another 166 men and
four rapid fire antitank guns the transport. Destroyer MINAZUKI removes 267
troops from the transport and ISOKAZE removes 236 troops and two mountain guns.
All the troops are landed at Rabaul. Ammunition and supplies are also off loaded
from KIYOSUMI MARU.
YUBARI departs Rabaul for Kavieng escorting convoy "Tei No. 4".
5 November 1943:
At 0453, arrives at Kavieng. That same day, YUBARI is
designated flagship of DesRon 3, replacing light cruiser SENDAI, sunk 2 Nov '42
at Empress Augusta Bay.
6 November 1943:
Arrives at Rabaul. Departs Rabaul that same night
with destroyer SHIGURE on a troop transport run to Buka, Bougainville.
Disembarks 700 soldiers of the IJA's 17th Division and 25-tons of supplies.
7 November 1943:
Returns to Rabaul.
11 November 1943: Carrier Attack on Rabaul:
Aircraft from Rear
Admiral (later Admiral) Frederick C. Sherman's (USNA '10) (former CO of
LEXINGTON (CV-2) Task Force 38's USS SARATOGA (CV-3) and PRINCETON (CVL-23) and
Rear Admiral (later Vice Admiral) Alfred E. Montgomery's (USNA '12) TG 50.3
carriers USS ESSEX (CV-9), BUNKER HILL (CV-17) and INDEPENDENCE (CVL-22) attack
Rabaul. They sink destroyer SUZUNAMI and damage light cruiser AGANO and
destroyers NAGANAMI, URAKAZE and WAKATSUKI. YUBARI is damaged slightly by a
strafing attack; three sailors are wounded.
14 November 1943:
Receives slight damage during another air attack.
18 November 1943:
Departs Rabaul on a troop transport run to Garove
Island, New Britain. While enroute to Garove, YUBARI is attacked by USAAF
Consolidated B-24 "Liberators" at 04-20S, 150-00E and later by USN Consolidated
PBY "Catalinas" at 03-41S, 150-15E. Damage to the ship from these attacks causes
her mission to be aborted.
24 November 1943:
Arrives back at Rabaul. Undergoes repairs.
3 December 1943:
Departs Rabaul towing DesDiv 31's NAGANAMI damaged
by an aerial torpedo in the 11 November raid on Rabaul. DesDiv 22's FUMIZUKI and
MINAZUKI provide escort.
8 December 1943:
Arrives at Truk.
14 December 1943:
19 December 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Begins refit and modifications
that last until 4 March 1944. During her refit, two triple mount and eight
single mount Type 96 25-mm AA guns are fitted bringing YUBARI's total suite to
25 barrels (3x3, 4x2, 8x1). Her forward 140-mm mount is replaced by a single
120-mm/45 Type 10 HA gun and two depth charge rails are fitted at the stern.
8 January 1944:
12 January 1944:
20 January 1944:
Captain (Rear Admiral, posthumously) Oe Ranji
(47)(current CO of MAYA) is appointed the CO of YUBARI as additional duty.
5 February 1944:
20 February 1944:
Captain Nara Takao (49)(former Naval Gunnery
School instructor) is appointed the CO.
25 February 1944:
22 March 1944:
Reassigned as flagship of ComDesRon 3 Rear Admiral
Nakagawa Ko (former CO of HYUGA).
Tokyo Bay. Departs Kisarazu escorting Marianas troop reinforcement convoy
Higashi-Matsu ("East Pine") No. 3" consisting of 11 transports, supply ship
HAYASAKI, DesDiv 5's HATAKAZE, DesDiv 6's IKAZUCHI and DesDiv 32's TAMANAMI,
torpedo boat OTORI, kaibokans HIRADO and NOMI and subchasers CH-48, CH-51 and
25 March 1944:
The convoy is attacked by LtCdr (later Rear
Admiral-Ret) Bafford E. Lewellen's (USNA '31) old USS POLLACK (SS-180).
Lewellen sinks subchaser CH-54 and claims damage to several transports. YUBARI
is not attacked.
30 March 1944:
Arrives at Saipan.
23 April 1944:
Loads Army troops and supplies. Departs Saipan with
light cruiser KINU and DesDiv 9's SAMIDARE and DesDiv 29's YUZUKI.
25 April 1944:
Arrives at Palau. Embarks 365 troops and supplies.
26 April 1944:
Departs Palau with transport T.149 escorted by
SAMIDARE and YUZUKI.
27 April 1944:
On her first war patrol, LtCdr (later Captain) Eric L.
Barr's (USNA '34) USS BLUEGILL (SS-242) is reconnoitering the Sonsorol (now
Dongosaro) Islands, SW of Palau when YUBARI arrives. BLUEGILL sights her and a
destroyer, but YUBARI disappears behind the island. She proceeds to disembarks
her troops and departs at 0942.
YUBARI suddenly reappears from behind the island at top speed. Barr
quickly changes his set-up, swings BLUEGILL to the new firing course and fires
six torpedoes. YUBARI evades four torpedoes of the first spread, but at 1004,
she is hit starboard side in her No. 1 boiler room. All engines stop and the
cruiser goes dead in the water. One officer and 16 sailors are killed in No. 1
boiler room as a result of the torpedo explosion. By 1030, boiler rooms Nos. 1
and 2 are totally flooded. After 1400, an attempt to get underway on her middle
At 1650, SAMIDARE attempts unsuccessfully to tow YUBARI.
28 April 1944:
At 0541, DesRon 3's flag is transferred to YUZUKI. At
0544, YUZUKI rescues survivors including Captain Nara. At 1015, almost 24-hours
after she was torpedoed, YUBARI sinks by the bow at 05-38N, 131-45E. Nineteen
crewmen are lost.
10 June 1944:
Removed from the Navy list.
 Mt. Niitaka, located in Formosa (now Taiwan), was the
highest point in the Japanese Empire at the time.
 Captain Elrod was killed during the fighting on 23 December in the
final assault on Wake. He is awarded the Medal of Honor, posthumously, the first
Marine to receive the medal in WW 2.
 A captured diary indicates that on 6 May 1942 an Allied flying boat
crashed ahead of a Japanese convoy, probably Rear Admiral Sadamichi's Port
Moresby Invasion Group and Rear Admiral Koso's Transport Unit. The diary
furthers states that on 7 May YUBARI took the nine prisoners aboard, who were
transferred to transport MATSUE MARU that returned to Rabaul on 9 May. No
record exists of the POWs arriving at Rabaul.
 Some Japanese sources credit YUBARI with a torpedo hit on USS
Special thanks for assistance in researching the IJN officers mentioned
in this TROM go to Mr. Jean-François Masson of Canada. Thanks also goes to
Aldert Gritter/"Adm. Gurita" of the Netherlands and John Whitman of the USA.
- Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp.