The Battle of Leyte Gulf - A Gathering of Original Combat Despatches and Various Original Ephemera From History's Greatest Naval Battle.
16 Radio Telegrams including detailed Action Reports, Tactical Operation Commands, Battle Assessments, Damage Reports, etc. spanning the full duration of The Battle of Leyte Gulf, 24 October - 28 October 1944. Imprinted upon wartime, U.S. Communication Service (USS Hector - 20M Sets) yellow onionskin paper. 8" x 6.5". 7 designated "Secret- Urgent", 4 designated "Operational Priority-Secret", 2 designated "Priority-Secret", 1 designated "Top Secret-Operational Priority", 1 designated "Secret-Op-Op-Op",1 designated "Routine-Confidential". TRANSCRIBED DESPATCHES#24031510/24/44 06;14From: CTF 77-(Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II Attack Force)Action: CTG 77.2 - (Rear-Admiral Olendorf - Bombardment & Fire Support Group)CTF 78 - (Rear Admiral Barbey - Northern Attack Force)CTF 79 - (Vice-Admiral Wilkinson - Southern Attack Force)CTG 77.3 - (Rear Admiral Berkey - Close Covering Group)CTG 70.1 -( Commander S.S. Bowling - MTB Group)PREPARE FOR NIGHT ENGAGEMENT X ENEMY FORCE ESTIMATED 2 BB 4 CA 4 CL 10 DD REPORTED UNDER ATTACK BY OUR CARRIER PLANES IN EASTERN SULU SEA AT 09101 24 OCT X ENEMY CAN ARRIVE LEYTE GULF TONIGHT X MAKE ALL PREPARATIONS FOR NIGHT ENGAGEMENT X TG 77.3 ASSIGNED TO CTG. 77.2 AS REINFORCEMENT X CTG 70.1 STATION MAXIMUM NUMBER PT'S LOWER SURIGAO STRAIT TO REMAIN SOUTH OF 10-10N DURING DARKNESS.#24050410/24/4406:34From: CTG 70.1 - (Commander S.S. Bowling - MTB Group)Action:All TFC 7th FleetAll TGC 7th FleetAGP 8 WachapreagueEXPECT TOKYO EXPRESS TONIGHT X BEFORE DARK STATION BOATS IN SECTIONS OF 2 OR 3 BOATS EACH AT FOLLOWING POSITIONS X SOUTHWEST TIP PANOAN X SOUTH OF MADILAO POINT X SOUTH OF LIMASAWA ISLAND X 2 SECTIONS PATROL BETWEEN AGIO POINT BOHOL PAST CAMIGUIN ISLAND TO SEPACG POINT MINDANAO X VITAL EASC OSTOKOWSW FILE REPORT CONTACTS AND THAT OTHER SECTION LEADERS AND WACHAPREAGUE RELAY THESE REPORTS TO CODLIVER X 21 BOATS FROM OYSTER BAY STATIONED BY SECTIONS AS FOLLOWS x SOURGDB T TIP PANOAN ISLAND X BILAA POINT MINDANAO X IN SURIGAO STRAIT 5 SECTIONS X 1 OFF SUMILON ISLAND X 1 MEDCHANTRN OFF KANHATID POINT DINAGAT ISLAND X 2 OFF KANIHALN ISLAND X 1 SOUTHEAST AMAGUSAN POINT X WACHAPREAGUE INFORM LCIS LAST STATION X SECTIONS ATTACK INDEPENDENTLY AFTER MAKING CONTACT REPORT X CTG 70.1 SENDS. #24093810/24/44From: CTG 77.4 - ( Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague - Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv22)Action: CTG 77.4THE SUPERB AIRMANSHIP AND FIGHTING SPIRIT DISPLAYED TODAY WILL LIVE IN HISTORY X IT IS MY OPINION THAT THIS IS THE FIRST DAY OF A RUNNING FIGHT WHICH WILL MARK THE ECLIPSE OF JAPANESE SEA POWER x TO BE EQUAL TO THE TASK IS ONLY TO REPEAT WHAT YOU HAVE DONE TODAY X UNIT COMMANDERS PASS TO THOSE UNDER YOUR COMMAND. #24223210/25/44From: CTG 77.4 - ( Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague - Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv22)Action: CTF 77 ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II Attack Force)CTF 78 (Rear Admiral Barbey - Northern Attack Force)CTF 79 (Vice-Admiral Wilkinson - Southern Attack Force)All CTG'sTF 77 (King II Attack Force)COMPLETE REPORT OF ESCORT CARRIERS OPERATIONS TWENTY FOUR OCTOBER X ENEMY AIR RAIDS IN FORCE CAUSED CANCELLATION OF VISAYAS STRIKES AND SOME REDUCTION OF SUPPORT AIRCRAFT X OUR REINFORCED COMBAT PATROL SHOT DOWN FORTY EIGHT TWIN ENGINE AND EIGHTEEN SINGLE ENGINE JAP PLANES PLUS EIGHT MORE TWIN ENGINE PLANES PROBABLY DESTROYED IN A WILD MELEE OVER LEYTE ISLAND THE BEACHES AND SHIPPING IN LEYTE GULF X PLANES SHOT DOWN INCLUDED TWENTY LILYS, EIGHTEEN SALLYS, SEVEN FRANCES, AND WIDE ASSORTMENT OF OTHER ARMY AND NAVY TYPES X HIGH SCORE FOR THE DAY WAS MADE BY LT CDR FUNK OF SANTEE WITH FIVE KILLS ON A SINGLE FLIGHT WHILE SAWANNEE PILOTS REPORTED KNOCKING DOWN EIGHT OUT OF EIGHT IN ONE GROUP X OUR LOSSES IN COMBAT WERE TWO PILOTS AND EIGHT PLANES WHICH INCLUDED ONE FOX SIX FOX FOUR FOX MIKE TWO TARE BAKER MIKE PLUS ONE FOX MIKE MISSING X OPERATIONAL LOSSES WERE ONE FOX MIKE WHICH SPUN IN JUST AFTER TAKEOFF DURING DARKNESS WITH THE LOSS OF THE PILOT X SPECIAL STRIKE ON BACOLOD FIELD DESTROYED TWO IRVINGS, ONE KATE, ONE BETTY, AND ONE SINGLE ENGINE PLANE ON THE FIELD, DAMAGED ONE IRVING AND ONE TOJO, AND SANK ONE LUGGER AND FOUR BARGES X ONE JUDY CAME OUT TO FIND OUT WHAT WE WERE DOING OUTSIDE WAS CHASED FROM FIFTEEN THOUSAND TO FIFTY FEET AND SHOT DOWN BY THE LLERT LOCAL CAP X ALL IN ALL A GRAND DAY X FROM COMTASKFBBUP SEVENSEVEN DOT FOUR.#24234810/25/4401:07From: COM 3RD FLT - ( Admiral Halsey -Commander 3rd Fleet)Action: CTG 38.1 - (Vice-Admiral John McCain)PROCEED AT BEST POSSIBLE SPEED TO SOUTHWEST STRIKE EARLIEST POSSIBLE ENEMY FORCE REPORTED TO BE 4 BB'S8 CA'S PLUS DD'S IN VICINITY11-20N 127-00E AT 0800 X FROM COM 3RD FLT ACTION CTG 38.1 INFO ALL TGC'S 3RD AND 7TH FLTS CTF 77 ALL TFCS 3RD AND 7TH FLTS.#25061510/25/4407:08From: CTU 77.4.3 - ( Rear Admiral G.A.F.("Ziggy") Sprague -Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv 25)Action: CTG 77.4 - ( Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague - Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv22)SECOND BATTLE DAMAGE REPORT X KALININ BAY RECEIVED 15 SHELL HOLES IN HULL IN ADDITION TO A FEW SMALL FRAGMENTATION HOLES X MOST HOLES PLUGGED UP AND ONLY LEAKING SLIGHTLY NOW X NUMEROUS HOLES IN FLIGHT DECK BY SUICIDE PLANE BEING REPAIRED X AT01L FLOODED BUT UNDER CONTROL X SMALL FIRE IN FUEL OIL TANK UNDER MACHINE SHOP X GYRO OK BUT HAVING GREAT DIFFICULTY STEERING X ELEVATOR LOWERED AND DECOMMISSIONED X ALL COMMUNICATIONS ON BRIDGE OUT X CAN RECEIVE VHF ONE CANNOT TRANSMIT ON ANYTHING NO RADAR X CANNOT STAND ANY INCREASE IN DRAFT XX 1020 HOEL REPORTED STOPPED TO PLUG HOLE 6 FEET IN DIAMETER 2 FEET BELOW WATERLINE X ONE GUN OUT X SOUND GEAR OUT X 200 ROUNDS OF AMMO LEFT NO TORPEDOES X NOT HEARD FROM SINCE X KITKUN BAY DAMAGE TO SHIP NEGLIGIBLE FROM NEAR BOMB HIT AND CRASH OF ENEMY PLANE X ONE KILLED 16 WOUNDED.#26013910/26/4406:05 (?)From: CTF 77 - ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II attack Force)Action: NoneInformation:CTF 38 - (Vice Admiral Mitscher - Fast Carrier Forces)COMAF 5 - ( Lt. General Ennis C Whitehead)COMFEAF - (General George Kenney)ENEMY CRUISER AND FIVE DD PROCEEDING COURSE 300 FROM BULALAOUI POINT NORTH CEBU X SHIPS 1000 POSITIONS FROM 5 TO 45 MILES NORTH CEBU X CRUISER IN VAN X CVE STRIKE NOW IN PROGRESS BUT ADDITIONAL STRIKES NEEDED.#26042710/26/4404:55From: CTF 77.4 - ( Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague - Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv22)Action: CTF 77 - ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II attack Force)UNDER AIR ATTACK X SUWANNEE HIT BY SUICIDE DIVE FORWARD OF BRIDGE X FIRE UNDER CONTROL.#26055110/26/4406:07From: CTF 77.4 - ( Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague - Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv22)Action: CTF 77 - ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid -7th Fleet - King II attack Force)RECOMMEND ESCORT CARRIERS BE RETURNED TO MANUS IMMEDIATELY DUE SHORTAGE FUEL BOMBS TORPEDOES AND LOSS YESTERDAY OF ABOUT TOTAL OF 130 PLANES X DETAILS IN MESSAGE FOLLOWING.#26063110/26/4416:24From: CTF 77 - ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II attack Force)Action: COMINCH (Admiral Ernest King - Commander-In-Chief, U.S. Fleet)Information: CINCSWPA ( General Douglas Macarthur - Commander U.S. Forces Far East)CINCPOA ( Admiral Chester Nimitz - Commander-In-Chief Pacific Fleet)COM3RDFLEET ( Admiral Halsey -Commander 3rd Fleet)COMA/RPAC (Vice-Admiral John Hoover - Task Force 57 - Forward Area Central Pacific)COM7THFLEET ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid -7th Fleet - King II Attack Force)WITH THE DEEPEST REGRET ITEM REPORT THE LOSS OF 2 CVE'S 2 DD'S AND 1 DE PLUS DAMAGE TO OTHER SHIPS IN A BATTLE FOUGHT TO THE EASTWARD OF SAMAR ON 25 OCT BETWEEN ENEMY AIR AND SURFACE FORCES AND A GROUP OF 16 CVE'S PLUS DD AND DE ESCORTS X THIS GROUP WITH SUPERB DETERMINATION AND SKILL FOUGHT AND DEFEATED A STRONG ENEMY SURFACE FORCE SUPPORTED BY REPEATED ATTACKS BY SHORE BASED ENEMY AIRCRAFT X THEY STRUCK REPEATEDLY WITH ALL MEANS AT THEIR DISPOSAL UNTIL THE ENEMY RETIRED DEFEATED AND CONTINUED TO STRIKE HIS RETREATING FORCES UNTIL DARKNESS X THE REPORT OF THE VALLIANT COMMANDER OF THIS GALLANT GROUP REAR ADMIRAL T.L. SPRAGUE IS TRANSMITTED HEREWITH X QUOTE X CTG 77.4 DESPATCH 25_00 X AS A RESULT OF TODAY SURFACE AND AIR ACTIONS CTU 77.4.3 REPORTS SAINT LO (FORMER MIDWAY) HIT BY DIVE BOMBER FOLLOWED BY HEAVY EXPLOSION WHICH DESTROYED SHIP X GAMBIER BAY JOHNSON AND ROBERTS MISSING SINCE BOMBARDMENT BY STRONG ENEMY FORCE BELIEVED TO CONTAIN 4 BB 8 CA AND CL 7 OR MORE DD ALL VERY FAST X ALL CARRIER GROUPS WERE UNDER ATTACK THROUGHOUT THE DAY X SANTEE RECEIVED TORPEDO HIT AND SUICIDE CRASH ON DECK WHICH STARTED FIRE AND PENETRATED BOTH FLIGHT AND HANGAR DECK X SANGAMON HAD SUICIDE CRASH ALONGSIDE WHICH PUNCTURED SIDE IN MANY PLACES X FIRES AND DAMAGE WERE BROUGHT UNDER CONTROL AND ALL VESSELS CONTINUED TO LAUNCH STRIKES AGAINST ENEMY FORCE TILL SUNDOWN X VESSELS OF TU 77.4.2 WERE UNHIT UP TO LATE AFTERNOON AND THIS GROUP LAUNCHED A TOTAL OF 6 HEAVY STRIKES ARMED WITH TORPEDOES AND HEAVY BOMBS X NORTHERN GROUP TU 77.4.3 WAS UNDER MORE OR LESS CONTINUOUS FIRE OF ENEMY BATTLESHIPS CRUISERS AND AIRCRAFT THROUGHOUT THE DAY X ALL SURVIVING CARRIERS WERE DAMAGED X WHITE PLAINS FANSHAW BAY AND KITKUN BAY GOT FIRES AND OTHER DAMAGE UNDER CONTROL AND CONTINUED TO LAUNCH ATTACKS UNTIL THE END OF THE DAY X LAST STRIKES FROM ALL SHIPS WERE OVERTAKEN BY DARKNESS AND MANY LANDED ON LEYTE X DAMAGE TO ENEMY CANNOT BE ASSESSED AT PRESENT BUT UNKNOWN DAMAGE INCLUDES 4 TORPEDOES IN BB AND NATORI CLASS CRUISER STOPPED AND SET AFIRE IN MINDANDO SEA X OFF SAMAR 2 BB WERE HIT BY TORPEDOES AND ONE CA STOPPED DEAD X DD AND DE OF SCREEN TU 77.4.3 MADE A GALLANT HEAD ON ATTACK WITH GUNS AND TORPEDOES WHEN THE CARRIERS WERE BROUGHT UNDER FIRE BY THE ENEMY BB X CASUALTIES OF SUNK AND MISSING SHIPS CANNOT BE ESTIMATED X THERE WERE 40 DEAD AND 40 CRITICALLY WOUNDED ON SANTEE X ONE DEAD ON SANGAMON X ONE DEAD ON ROWELL X REPORTS FROM OTHER TASK UNITS ARE NOT YET AVAILABLE X RICHARD S BULL AND EVERSOLE WERE ORDERED TO SCENE OF SINKING TO RECOVER SURVIVORS REPORTED IN WATER X REPORT ON SINKING RECEIVED TOO LATE TODAY BUT SEARCH WILL BE CONTINUED ASSISTED BY AIRCRAFT TOMORROW X DURING RETIREMENT COOLBAUGH GOT WHAT IS BELIEVED TO BE A SUB (11 GROUPS MISSED) X SHE WAS ORDERED TO SIT ON HER CONTACT THROUGHOUT THE NIGHT X THE SPROSTON ALSO HAD GOOD CONTACT AND HAS SIMILAR ORDERS X SPROSTON SHOT DOWN ONE NIGHT RAIDER WHICH WAS ATTEMPTING TO ATTACK TU 77.4.3 X NO ESTIMATE OF TOTAL AIRCRAFT SHOT DOWN CAN BE MADE AT THIS TIME BUT THE NUMBER IS CONSIDERABLE X FIRST STRIKES OF THE DAY WERE WITH THE ENEMY ON A WESTERLY COURSE TO SAN BERNARDINO STRAIT UNQUOTE X THIS ACTION AND THAT OF THE PRECEDING NIGHT IN WHICH STRONG ENEMY SURFACE FORCES WERE OVERWHELMINGLY DEFEATED IN SURIGAO STRAIT BY OTHER SURFACE UNITS OF THE 7TH FLEET UNDER REAR ADMIRAL RALP B OLENDORF ARE HIGHLIGHTS ON THE ROAD TO TOKYO X TOGETHER THEY CONSTITUTE THE BATTLE OF LEYTE GULF. #26113110/26/4416:53From: CTF 77 - ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid -7th Fleet - King II attack Force)Action: CTF 77.4 ( Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague - Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv22)Information:All TGC & TFC 3rd and 7th FleetsESSENTIAL THAT SIX OF YOUR CARRIERS REMAIN THIS AREA IF AT ALL POSSIBLE TO PROVIDE FIGHTER COVERAGE REFERRING YOUR 260614 x DESIGNATE SIX THAT ARE IN BEST OPERATING CONDITION TO REMAIN X FILL THEM WITH FIGHTERS RETAINING ONLY SUFFICIENT VT FOR YOUR OWN ASP X SEND REMAINING CVE's TO MANUS WHEN TRANSFER OF PLANES EFFECTED X GROUP REMAINING WILL BE FUELED ACCIPITER 28 OCTOBER X CTF 77 SENDS. REF ATTACHED. #26235510/27/4409:43From: CTU 77.4.3 - ( Rear Admiral G.A.F.("Ziggy") Sprague -Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv 25)Action: CTF 77 ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II attack Force)CTG 77.4 - ( Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague - Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv22)Information:COMINCH - COMINCH (Admiral Ernest King - Commander-In-Chief, U.S. Fleet)CINCPAC - ( Admiral Chester Nimitz - Commander-In-Chief Pacific Fleet)COMAIRPAC -(Vice Admiral George Murray - Commander, Air Force, Pacific Fleet ) COM3RDFLT - ( Admiral Halsey -Commander 3rd Fleet)COM7THFLT - ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid -7th Fleet - King II Attack Force)CINCSOWESPAC - ( General Douglas Macarthur - Commander U.S. Forces Far East)NPM PASS TO COMINCH CINCPAC COMAIRPAC FOR INFO X MAIN ENEMY BODY SIGHTED BY ASP AS PER MY CONTACT REPORT AT 0603 ITEM OCT 25 X FOR OVER 2 1/2 HOURS THIS FORCE WAS SUBJECTED TO ENEMY BB, CA, AND DD GUN AND TORPEDO ATTACK X WE WERE HIT NUMEROUS TIMES X GAMBIER BAY HAD ONE ENGINE PUT OUT OF COMMISSION DROPPED BACK AND MUST HAVE BEEN SUNK BY ENEMY GUNFIRE PLUS HOEL JOHNSTON AND ROBERTS X REMAINING 5 CVE EMERGED FROM THIS DAMAGED BUT ABLE TO MAINTAIN 16 KNOTS X ABOUT 1 HOUR 20 MINUTES LATER 6 SUICIDE BOMBERS ATTACKED X ATTACK HAD TO BE SEEN TO BE BELIEVED X 3 PLANES HIT BY AA NARROWLY MISSED SHIPS X 1 HIT PORT CATWALK OF KITKUN BAY X 1 SKIDDED LENGTH OF KALININ BAY FLIGHT DECK OVER BOW X 1 WENT THROUGH DECK OF SAINT LO WHICH SHORTLY BLEW UP X PRELIMINARY REPORTS FROM SUCH OF OUR PILOTS AS ARE IN COMPANY SHOW FOLLOWING DEFINITE DAMAGE BY OUR PLANES X 1 CA SEEN TO BLOW UP AND SINK X 1 CA HIT BY 2 TORPEDOES AND 20 MINUTES LATER OBSERVED ON ITS SIDE X 3 MORE CA TORPEDOED X 1 BB DAMAGED X THE REST GOT AWAY X THIS UNIT TOGETHER WITH PLANES OF TU 77.4.1 AND 77.4.2 TURNED BACK ENEMY FLEET BEFORE ANY OTHER OFRENBURCPNAO COUOD ATTACK X 3 REMAINING SHIPS OF MY DIVISION REQUIRE EXTENSIVE NAVY YARD REPAIRS BEFORE COMBAT DUTY X PRELIMINARY REPORT OF CASUALTIES OF SHIPS NOW WITH ME X 10 KILLED 59 WOUNDED X I UNDERSTAND 800 SANIT LO SURVIVORS HAVE BEEN PICKED UP X DETAILED REPORT LATER.#27012210/27/4403:45From: CTG 77.4. - ( Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague - Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv22)Action: CTF 77 ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II attack Force)FOR ADMIRAL KINKAID x I DEEPLY REGRET THE EMBARRASSMENT WHICH MY 260614 MUST HAVE CAUSED YOU X YOUR 261328 HAS RELIEVED MY ANXIETY FOR MY SHIPS WHICH HAVE DEMONSTRATED A HOPELESS DEFENSE AGAINST THE CURRENT TECHNIQUE OF SUICIDE DIVES X MY RECOMMENDATION WAS BASED ON ERRONEOUS INFORMATION THAT THE AIR CORPS HAD ARRIVED X SPRAGUE#27114710/28/4400:40From: CTF 77 ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II attack Force)Action: COMINCH - ( Admiral Ernest King - Commander-In-Chief, U.S. Fleet)Information:CINCSWPA - ( General Douglas Macarthur - Commander U.S. Forces Far East)CINCPAC - ( Admiral Chester Nimitz - Commander-In-Chief Pacific Fleet) COM3RDFLT - ( Admiral Halsey -Commander 3rd Fleet)COM7THFLT - ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid -7th Fleet - King II Attack Force)All TFC & TGC 3rd and 7th FleetsON THE 26TH CVE COVERING GROUP (TG 77.4) DESPITE BATTLE LOSSES SUFFERED FROM THE PRECEDING DAY CONTINUED TO COVER OUR FORCES IN THE LEYTE GULF AREA AND LAUNCHED STRIKES IN THE CAMOTES SEA X 1 ENEMY CL WAS HIT WITH 4-500 POUND BOMBS AND 1 TORPEDO AND 1 DD CONFIRMED SUNK AFTER STRAFING ATTACK BELIEVE IT OR NOT X OTHER ATTACKS AS YET UNREPORTED X ABOUT 1100 OUR CVES WERE ATTACKED BY ENEMY PLANES X AFTER COMBAT PATROL HAD SHOT DOWN 4 OF GROUP 8-12 PLANES NIPS BEGAN A SERIES OF SUICIDE DIVES X 3 SHOT DOWN BY SHIPS GUNFIRE X 1 LANDED ON FLIGHT DECK SUWANNEE AMONG PARKED PLANES X SEVERE DAMAGE TO SHIP AND PLANES X MANY PERSONNEL CASUALTIES NUMBER UNDETERMINED X DE ROWELL OF CVE GROUP ABOUT 0900 SIGHTED PERISCOPE AND ATTACKED X MUCH OIL AND DEBRIS KEPT RISING DURING THE DAY X CLAIMS SUNK X CTF 77 SENDS ACTION COMINCH INFO CINCSWPA CINCPAC COM3RDFLT COM7THFLT ALL TFC AND TGC 3RD AND 7TH FLEETS X CRUISER AND DESTROYER GROUP HAVING REPLENISHED FUEL AND AMMUNITION AFTER THE SURIGAO STRAIT ACTION IS NOW WITH CVE COVERING GROUP X FAST CARRIERS OF 3RD FLEET ARE NOW PROVIDING CLOSE SUPPORT OF LEYTE AREA X ENEMY AIR RAIDS CONTINUED TODAY BUT WITH REDUCED EFFECTS CONTRIBUTED TO THE EFFECTIVENESS 3RD FLEET FAST CARRIERS AGAINST THE ENEMY AIR FIELDS X MORE ACCURATE INFORMATION IS NOW AVAILABLE ON THE RESULTS OF THE NIGHT BATTLE OF SURIGAO STRAIT STARTING EARLY MORNING OF 25 OCTOBER X 05 THE ENEMY FORCE WHICH ATTEMPTED TO FORCE INTO LEYTE GULF VIA THE SURIGAO STRAIT 2 BB 2CA 2 CL AND 10 DD ONLY 1 CA 1 CL AND 4 DD GOT OUT THE WAY THEY CAME IN X 2 BB IDENTIFIED AS YAMASHIRO AND BUSO 1 CA 1 CL AND 6 DD WERE DEFINITELY SUNK BY THE COMBINED TORPEDO ATTACKS OF OUR PT'S SNF DD'S AND THE **NOTE: REMAINDER OF MESSAGE (ABOUT 25 GROUPS) MISSED ON BOTH MANUS AND BELLS TRANSMISSIONS. #27220710/28/4401:08From: CTF 77.4 ( Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague - Escort Carrier Group - CarDiv22)Action: CTF 77 ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II attack Force)Information: TO WELCOME THE AIR CORPSCTF 78 (Rear Admiral Barbey - Northern Attack Force)CTF 79 (Vice-Admiral Wilkinson - Southern Attack Force)ALL TGC OF TF 77OPERATIONS 27 OCTOBER X COMTASKGROUP 77.4 SENDS X BOTH OPERATING GROUPS WERE REINFORCED BY CRUISERS AND DESTROYERS TODAY AND ALL HANDS BREATHED EASIER TO SEE THE BRISTLING GUNS WHICH SPELL THE ONLY KNOWN REMEDY FOR THE REPEATED SUICIDE DIVES WHICH THE ESCORT CARRIERS HAVE EXPERIENCED X ONE FORMATION OF JAPS ATTACKED IN THE EARLY MORNING BEFORE THE RENDEZVOUS WITH THE CRUISERS BUT WERE BEATEN OFF BY SHIPS GUNFIRE X LATER ANOTHER GROUP OF BOGIES APPROACHED BUT WERE DRIVEN OFF WITH ONE SHOT DOWN BY CAP X SUWANNEE WAS SENT TO KOSSOL TO EVACUATE WOUNDED AND PROCEED MANUS X SANTEE WAS ORDERED TO PROCEED TO MANUS DIRECT X A REDUCED CAP OVER THE LANDING AREA SHOT DOWN 6 ENEMY PLANES AND PROBABLY GOT 3 MORE X 3 WERE SHOT DOWN BY THE CAP OVER THE FORCE WHILE 1 BETTY WAS DESTROYED AND 6 WERE DAMAGED ON LAHUG FIELD X THE LAST FLYABLE PLANES FROM THE LANDINGS OF THE NIGHT OF THE BATTLE OF LEYTE GULF WERE RECEIVED ABOARD X PLANES OF TU 77.4.3 HELPED TO REPLACE LOSSES OF THE OTHER GROUPS X ALL HANDS WERE DELIGHTED. #27235110/28/4402:00From: COMPHIBGROUP 8 ((Rear Adm. W. M. Fechteler)Action:COMINCH - COMINCH (Admiral Ernest King - Commander-In-Chief, U.S. Fleet)CINCSWPA - ( General Douglas Macarthur - Commander U.S. Forces Far East)COM7THFLT - ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid -7th Fleet - King II Attack Force)CTF 77 ( Vice-Admiral Kinkaid--7th Fleet - King II attack Force)COMCARDIVS 23, 25,& 26 - ( Commander, Carrier Divisions 23*, 25 - Rear Admiral G.A.F. Sprague, 26 - Rear Admiral Ofstie)CINCPAC - ( Admiral Chester Nimitz - Commander-In-Chief Pacific Fleet)SENIOR SURVIVOR CAPT VIEWIG NOW IN FREMONT REPORTS GAMBIER BAY SANK ABOUT 0900/I 25 OCTOBER IN LAT 12-30N LONG 126-30E AS RESULT ABOUT 20 8-INCH HITS FROM NIP HEAVY CRUISERS FINAL RANGE 2000 YARDS X COMPHIB GROUP 8 THROWS ACTION TO COMINCH CINCSWPA COM7THFLT CTF 77 COMCARDIVS 23, 25 AND 26 CINCPAC X NO COMPROMISE CLASSIFIED MATTER X 18 FIGHTERS AND 8 AVENGERS AIRBORNE AND PRESENT STATUS UNKNOWN X ABOUT 650 OFFICERS AND MEN RESCUED.* Cataloguers Note - No designation for CARDIV 23 appears in "Command Communication Manual for King II"ADDITIONALLY -1. Communication Manual for King II. 86pps.4.5" x 5.5".Designated TOP SECRET with admonition - " THIS BOOKLET WILL NOT BE TAKEN ASHORE NOR CARRIED IN AIRCRAFT". Copy # 0157 and marked Flag Bridge, this is presumably Rear Admiral T. L. Sprague's copy whilst Commanding Taffy 1 Task Group aboard USS Sangamon during the Battle of Leyte gulf. 2. Propaganda Leaflet 2-J-1 - Japanese Soldier In A Rowboat.1944. 8.25" x 5.25".One of the earliest Army leaflets dropped on Japanese troops is 2-J-1 entitled Japanese soldier sitting in a rowboat. The U.S. did not want to antagonize the Japanese so they used a technique they call soft-soaping to point out their predicament without appearing to gloat. The leaflet depicts an unhappy Japanese soldier alone in a rowboat near a barren island. It appears that the 6th Army liked the leaflet so much that they reprinted it and used it in their section of the Philippines. The text on the front translates to:"Left Behind With Only Small Boats, an Army Chokes With Grief!"The back is all text and says in part:"Soldiers and Officers of Japan. We wish neither to insult nor make fun of you. Because at Bataan and Corregidor we faced the same miserable conditions you are now facing, we cannot but sympathize with you Where are the ships that brought you and your supplies here? Where is the Navy which escorted your transports?When ships can no longer reach an island garrison, do you not realize for the first time that the island has been abandoned?"3. Propaganda Leaflet - 2-F-1 MacArthur Has Returned.1944. 10.5" x 8"Notice that it is MacArthur that has returned and not thousands of American soldiers and sailors. Still, the General apparently believed that the Filipinos reacted to his own charisma and personality and perhaps he was correct. The two page bi-fold above shows MacArthur saluting on the front and debarking from an aircraft on the back. There are three black and white pictures of him inside the booklet. It appears that all the F leaflets were to the Filipinos after the American landing. The front of the leaflet depicts General MacArthur saluting. The back of the leaflet depicts the general stepping off an aircraft with the text:"General MacArthur steps out of a plane at an advance airbase somewhere in New Guinea."When the bi-fold is opened there are three black and white photographs inside the leaflet with MacArthur on a warship, walking down a Philippine road, and in a landing craft. The text is:"General MacArthur keeps his pledge. When General MacArthur left Corregidor, under orders from President Roosevelt to proceed to Australia and organize the offensive against Japan, his last words were I shall return. From that moment his one driving ambition has been to get back to the Philippines, to drive out the Japanese, and to restore the legitimate government of the Philippines. Today General MacArthur is back in the Philippines. He has returned as he promised. His great task is now entering its final phase. The forces under his command are assaulting the Japanese invaders throughout the Philippines. With these forces, General MacArthur will accomplish the liberation of the Filipino people. But that liberation can be accomplished more quickly, and at smaller cost to American and Filipino lives, with your help and co-operation. General MacArthur will tell you over the radio, in proclamation, and by leaflet, exactly how and when you can help. Watch closely for these instructions."4. Propaganda Leaflet 3-F-1 - A Message to Every Filipino.1944. 8" x 5.5"This leaflet bears a Philippine seal on the front and a picture of the president on the back. This leaflet bears no code but my files show that it was 3F1. Some of the text is:President Osmena, elected to high office by the Filipino people at the last popular elections held in this country, has returned to the Philippines with General MacArthur. He and the members of his government, with the complete support and backing of the American government, come to assist in the restoration of your freedom.There is a photograph of President Osmena on the back in front of a CBS microphone addressing the Philippine people. The title is:"The Need for Unity".5. Propaganda Leaflet 4-F-6 - The Yanks Have Landed On your Island.1944. "8.5" x 5.25".Leaflet depicts American soldiers walking ashore. It was prepared on 23 September 1944 to be used on islands where the Americans land from D-Day to D plus 5. The back text is in English and warns the Filipinos to stay away from Japanese military objectives and ends with:"Remember: Planes, bombs and shells cannot tell a friend from a foe."6. Propaganda Leaflet 3-J-1 - Island Hopping.1944. 8.25" x 5.25".Army Psychological Warfare Branch leaflet 3-J-1 seems to be the first in a series of leaflets that depicts Japanese soldiers left behind as General MacArthur advanced using his "Island-Hopping" campaign. Other similar leaflets depicted a lone Japanese soldier standing on an island (6-J-1) or a lone Japanese soldier watching a battle take place on a nearby island (22-J-1). These leaflets all had the basic same message. You are cut off and there will be no resupply. There will be no food, no water, no ammunition and no reinforcements. Some of the text on this leaflet is:"Before you reach this miserable state, which is more than men ought to endure so far from home, we want you to keep something in mind. Those who choose to come to an honorable understanding with us will find that we treat them as human beings, not as enemies. We shall hold it a duty to see that they gave clothing food, shelter and medical care."This leaflet does not ask the Japanese soldier to surrender. To save face, it simply asks that he reach an "honorable understanding" with the Americans.7. Propaganda Leaflet 1(b)J1 - I Surrender.1944. 9.5" x 13"Leaflet with English text on front and Japanese text on reverse. Some of the message is:"Officers and Soldiers of JapanThe battle you have put up has our sincere respect. We are quite confident, however, that victory will be ours, as in past operations. We have this confidence because of our officers and men, our superior scientific equipment, our artillery and our bombing. When you left home, many thousands of miles away, you thought the Japanese would win. You have since learned that your planes and equipment are no match for those of the Allied forces. Through the operations of our Air Force and navy, air and sea supremacy on the Pacific south of Taiwan belongs to us.Because of this, it is impossible to move raw materials of military importance from the South Seas to Japan. Therefore, what is needed on the front line is lacking. For the same reason, the very moving of supplies to the front line is difficult. We take it for granted, therefore, that you know you have no hope of winning. It is clear that your plight is not your fault but the fault of the army and navy staffs. With the battle hopeless, what can you do? You can come to an understanding with our forces and preserve yourself for the rebuilding of Japan. That was what Japanese officers and men on Guadalcanal and New Guinea did. They realized the futility of bloodshed and came to an understanding with us for the sake of their country after the war ."(Propaganda leaflet research and cataloging by- SGM Herbert A. Friedman (Ret.) The United States PSYOP Organization in the Pacific during World War II.)8. Plan of the Day-U.S.S. Sangamon- for Tuesday, 31 October 1944.Marked "Restricted".1 page Ship's Schedule, listing activities 0435 - 1800 hours to front page. Reprinting of 3 congratulatory Radio despatches from Battle Commanders (CINCPAC( Nimitz), Kinkaid, Sprague, ) to men participating in the Leyte Gulf Battle.9. Radio Manus( NTF) Frequency Employment. Official Photograph. Chief of the Bureau of Aeronautics.15 August 1944.Chart depicting tree of radio frequencies disseminated throughout Radio Manus Control. Stamped "Confidential" to front and rear. Marked "CVE. 26" (USS Sangamon) in ink to rear. 8" x 10.5".10. Aircraft Radio Frequency Tables and Air Ground Liaison. Official Photograph. Chief of the Bureau of Aeronautics.15 August 1944.Stamped "Confidential" to rear.Stamped USS Sangamon to rear.8" x 10.5".11. Frequency Chart Task Force 78. Associated Ships and Commands. Appendix I Annex C. n.d. (1944).Stamped "Confidential" to rear. Chart detailing frequency distributions to ships and commands of Task Force 78 (Northern Attack Force) commanded by RearAdmiral Daniel Barbey at the Leyte Gulf Battle. 8" x 10.5".12. Army Air Force Cloth Chart - Philippine Series.No. C-40, Luzon Island.Army Air Force Cloth Map - Asiatic Series. No. 34, Southeast China. Folding, 2 sided limp cloth.1944. 20.5" x 27". 2 copies.13. Army Air Force Cloth Map. No. 20, Ambonia. No.21, Halmahera. Folding, 2 sided limp cloth. 1944. 28" x 34" . Sporadic Light Foxing.14. Royal Australian Air Force Silk Map.Halmahera. n.d. (c.1944). 31" x 23" Radiograms are beyond Very Good with crisp texture and highly legible text. King II Communication Manual presents wear and soiling to covers, as expected. Staples rusted. Some sporadic usual soiling to internals. A Very Good, nicely preserved copy.Very Good "I Surrender" propaganda leaflet presents a 1 inch, nonintrusive split along mid-line fold crease. All other leaflets Near Fine.Radio Frequency Tables all Near Fine.Cloth and Silk maps present standard creasing from folding. All Fine and bright.Ship's schedule presents repairs to chipped and folded edges with polyethylene adhesive tape. Delicate but, Very Good.Radiograms are beyond Very Good with crisp texture and highly legible text. King II Communication Manual presents wear and soiling to covers, as expected. Staples rusted.Some sporadic usual soiling to internals. A Very Good, nicely preserved copy.Very Good "I Surrender" propaganda leaflet presents a 1 inch, nonintrusive split along mid-line fold crease. All other leaflets Near Fine.Radio Frequency Tables all Near Fine.Cloth and Silk maps present standard creasing from folding. All Fine and bright.Ship's schedule presents repairs to chipped and folded edges with polyethylene adhesive tape. Delicate but, Very Good.Full Photos of this collection may be found at: http://www.heldfond.com/pages/books/8860/the-battle-of-leyte-gulf-a-gathering-of-original-combat-despatches-and-various-original-ephemera
(Inventory #: 8860)
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