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Tilefish SS-307Tilefish SS-307 - History

Tilefish SS-307Tilefish SS-307 - History


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(SS-307: dp. 1,526; 1. 311'10", b. 27'4", dr. 16'2"; s. 20.25 k. (surf.), 8.75 k. (subm.); cpl. 66; a. 10 21"tt., 1 5", 1 40mm., 2 .50-car. mg.; cl. Balao)

Tilefish (SS-307) was laid down on 10 March 1943 at Vallejo, Calif., by the Mare Island Navy Yard; launched on 25 October 1943, sponsored by Mrs. Wilson D. Leggett; and commissioned on 28 December 1943, Lt. Comdr. Roger Myers Keithly in command.

During February and March 1944, Tilefish underwent trials and shakedown off the California coast before getting underway for Hawaii. On 3 April, the submarine departed Pearl Harbor for her first war patrol, setting course for the Japanese home islands. While patrolling in the "Hit Parade" area east of Honshu, Tilefish sighted many enemy aircraft but found few targets for her torpedoes. Early in the patrol, she was hampered by the failure of her fathometer; and, throughout the mission, she was plagued by periscope fogging and overcast weather which ruled out celestial navigation. Finally, on the morning of 11 May, the novice submarine and her crew encountered their first opportunity for action. Tilefish sighted a small convoy and launched a determined attack. Choosing a passenger liner as her target, the submarine unleashed a spread of torpedoes, scoring a hit under the ships bridge. As Tilefish dove amid the sounds of explosions, she experienced problems which caused her inadvertently to take on a large amount of water. Before the situation was brought under control Tilefish had made a hair-raising dive to 580 feet, well below test depth. Too deep to be reached by the depth charges of her pursuers, she evaded their attack and continued her patrol. Finding contact with the enemy to be very light, Tilefish requested another patrol area and was assigned to the northern Marianas where she searched for targets on 19 and 20 May. She completed this patrol at Majuro on 29 May 1944.

After a refitting by Bushnell (AS-15), Tilefish departed Majuro on 22 June 1944 and headed with an attack group for the Luzon Strait area. In company with Sawfish (SS-276) and Rock (SS-274), Tilefish set course, via Batan Island and Bashi Channel, for her assigned position. On the morning of 18 July, Tilefish launched a torpedo attack on a large convoy and had the satisfaction of seeing a freighter sustain two hits. Meanwhile, Rock had joined in the attack and was being held down by a destroyer of the convoy's screen. At 1050, Tilefish made a torpedo attack on the destroyer. Seeing their menacing wakes, the enemy ship attempted to evade the torpedoes, but the first hit under its forward mount and wrapped her bow around the bridge. A second hit added to the destroyer's damage. Before Tilefish was forced down by enemy aircraft, she caught one last glimpse of the destroyer, listing and dead in the water. Nine minutes later, the submarine made a periscope sweep and found no sign of the enemy ship.

In the days that followed, the submarine patrolled the waters east of Formosa attempting to intercept the convoy which she had damaged on the 18th. On 26 July, Tilefish surfaced just at the moment when Sawfish launched a three-torpedo attack on a Japanese 1-52class submarine. I-29 exploded, leaving behind only smoke and flames. On 31 July, after Sawfish had reported a convoy contact off Luzon, Tilefish set course to intercept the enemy ship,s but never found the quarry. Tilefish fueled at Midway before completing her second patrol at Pearl Harbor on 15 August.

Tilefish departed Oahu on 10 September 1944. This patrol, conducted in the Sea of Okhotak and off the Kuril Islands, was made difficult by rough seas which produced swells reaching heights of 30 to 40 feet. Despite the problems imposed by high seas, Tilefish sank a small trawler with her four-inch gun on the 23d. Early in October, she destroyed two small cargo vessels as they were leaving Hitokappu Wan, Yetorofu Jima. During the mid-watch on 13 October, an adventurous owl came on board. The feathered seafarer was promptly dubbed Boris Hootski and made official ship's mascot. In the following days, Tilefish claimed two more kills-a cargo ship and a wooden-hulled antisubmarine vessel. On the 17th, to prevent its being salvaged, she blew out the stern of a vessel grounded west of Shimushiru Island. Tilefish ended her third patrol at Midway on 24 October 1944.

On 15 November, Tilefish got underway for the Kuril Islands. During the first half of this patrol, she operated in northern waters but was hampered by bitterly cold weather, poor visibility, and hurricane-force winds. The mountainous waves forced the submarine to submerge to ride out the storm. On the 25th, Tilefish entered the Sea of Okhotsk to patrol the coast of Shimushiru. Snow frosted the periscope and prevented accurate identification of possible targets. By 16 December, Tilefish had moved south to take up a lifeguard station off Najima Saki. On the morning of 22 December, she sank Chidori, a torpedo boat, and evaded a Japanese counterattack of depth charges and aerial bombs without damage. She departed the patrol area on 24 December and arrived at Pearl Harbor on 2 January 1945.

After refitting by Orion (AS-18), Tilefish set course for the Marianas in company with Thresher (SS-200) and Pelo (SS-265) on 31 January 1945. En route, she participated in exercises and searched for the survivors of a downed American plane. Underway from Saipan on 13 February, Tilefish proceeded independently to her patrol area in the Nansei Shoto where she prowled the traffic lanes in search of targets. She reported sinking a 90-ton cargo ship in a morning gun attack on 28 February before taking up a lifeguard station in support of planned strikes on Amami Shima. On 1 March, she rescued a flier from Hancock (CV-19) whose plane had splashed and sank only 500 yards off the starboard bow of the submarine. She sent a fishing trawler to the bottom on 4 March. On the following day, in the course of a daylong attack on a freighter, she sank a Japanese minesweeper which was escorting the cargo ship. From 10 to 19 March, she performed lifeguard duties in support of strikes on Nagoya and other Japanese targets. After patrolling the approaches to Tokyo Bay on 22 March, Tilefish set course, via Midway and Pearl Harbor, for San Francisco. After undergoing overhaul, she returned to Pearl Harbor on 11 July and was soon underway for Midway and Saipan. When the war in the Pacific ended, Tilefish was on lifeguard station off the Ryukyus. She continued lifeguard duties and patrols in the western Pacific until 7 September when she returned to Pearl Harbor.

Early in 1946, Tilefish returned to San Francisco and operated off the west coast throughout most of the year. In May, she participated in wolf pack exercises and in September took part in live load training, using the hulk of the former SS Scheyler Colfax as a target. In October, she made a brief trip to the Hawaiian Islands and then returned to the west coast. From January 1947 to September 1950, Tilefish continued to operate out of California ports with occasional voyages to Pearl Harbor. During this period, she conducted underway training and took part in fleet exercises off the west coast.

On 5 September 1950, Tilefish departed Pearl Harbor for Japan. From 28 September 1950 through 24 March 1951, the submarine operated out of Japanese ports conducting patrols in Korean waters in support of the United Nations campaign in Korea. She made reconnaissance patrols of La Perouse Strait to keep the Commander, Naval Forces Far East, informed of Soviet seaborne activity in that area. After this tour, the submarine resumed her routine of operations out of Hawaiian and west coast ports until 1957. Highlights of this period were convoy attack exercises in Hawaiian waters and a goodwill visit to Acapulco, Mexico, early in June 1956.

Following a period of reduced status and overhaul Tilefish again got underway in April 1957 for Far Eastern waters. During this deployment, she visited ports in Japan and the Ryukyus before completing the cruise at San Diego on 27 September 1957.

On 16 September 1958, the veteran submarine made way via Pearl Harbor for Midway and the Marshalls. With four civilian geophysicists on board from the Hydrographic Office, the submarine completed a submerged survey of Eniwetok, Wake, and Midway, operating at sea for nearly three months. She returned to San Diego on 5 December 1958 for inactivation.

Tilefish was decommissioned on 12 October 1959, underwent overhaul at the San Francisco Naval Shipyard, and was recommissioned on 30 January 1960. Her final decommissioning was in May of 1960. She was sold to the Venezuelan government to be known as ARV Carite. Tilefish was struck from the Navy list on 1 December 1960.

Carite served in the Venezuelan Navy into the 1970's. While in the service of Venezuela, during the filming of the movie "Murphy's War" in 1969 and 1970, the submarine played the part of a German U-boat hiding in the Amazon River. For the role, she was modified by the addition of a "cigarette deck" aft of her sail and was painted in a "dazzle" camouflage pattern.

Carite was decommissioned by the Venezuelan Navy on 28 January 1977 and scheduled to be cannibalized for spare parts.

Tilefish received five battle stars for World War II service. She received one battle star for Korean service.


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TILEFISH’s Tagalongs

On 25 October 1943, USS TILEFISH (SS-307) was launched at Mare Island Naval Shipyard in Vallejo, CA. The boat would go on to win five battle stars for her patrols during World War II and one for missions she undertook along the coast of Korea. Although her war patrol reports from the 1940s document a number of dramatic pursuits and kills—as well as one unintentional plunge to nearly 600 feet, far below what was considered to be her test depth—two other events stand out as well, both involving passengers—one animal, one human—who hitched a ride with the sub.

The first tagalong came aboard during the third war patrol, which began on 10 September 1944. The boat was prowling the Sea of Okhotsk, very close to Russia’s Kuril Islands, but her search for targets was hampered by waves up to 40 feet in height. TILEFISH still managed to send several vessels to the bottom—one trawler, two small cargo ships, a larger cargo ship, and an anti-submarine vessel she also blew a giant hole in a ship that had already run aground, thereby preventing the Japanese from salvaging it. Then, at 0300 on 13 October, as the sub was patrolling in the Gulf of Patience between Sakhalin Island and Cape Patience, a new crewmember appeared. “BORIS HOOTSKI, night lookout first class (a Russian Owl) reported aboard for duty,” the commanding officer wrote in the war-patrol report. “He is now official ship’s mascot and stands battle stations on top of the tube blow and vent manifold.” No other mention of Boris appears in the reports, so it is not clear whether he continued to stand a regular watch or eventually went AWOL.

The next visitor arrived during TILEFISH’s fifth war patrol, during the winter of 1945, as the boat was winding her way through the Mariana Islands with USS THRESHER (SS-200) and USS PETO (SS-265). Towards the end of February, she reported for lifeguard duty in advance of planned air strikes on Amami Oshima, an island in the Ryukyu Archipelago. First thing in the morning on 1 March, the commanding officer noted the arrival of scattered U.S. aircraft the first wave from a carrier flew by at 0834. At 0847: “Sighted smoke rising from southern end of AMAMI OSHIMA. The zoomies are getting in their licks.” At 0855: “Sighted three friendly fighters closing us at low altitude on port beam. One apparently in trouble.” One minute later: “Damaged fighter landed in water 500 yards on starboard bow. Headed for him. Plane sank within 20 seconds. Pilot in the water.” By 0859, Lieutenant (jg) William J. Hooks was safely aboard TILEFISH and his carrier, USS HANCOCK (CV-19), had been informed of his recovery. No doubt LT Hooks, although certainly dismayed by the loss of his plane, was overjoyed at having been able to splash down only feet from his rescuers whereas some World War II pilots spent hours or even days (more than a month and a half, in one case) in the water before help arrived, Hooks spent only three minutes in the drink.

TILEFISH completed one more war patrol before the cessation of hostilities. She would later be sold to Venezuela, where she served as ARV Carite (S-11) for 16 years. In 1971 she changed allegiances to play a U-boat in Murphy’s War, starring Peter O’Toole. She was decommissioned for good in 1977. One hopes Boris Hootski was proud to have served on such a successful and multi-talented vessel.


Third and Fourth War Patrols

Tilefish departed Oahu on 10 September 1944. This patrol, conducted in the Sea of Okhotsk and off the Kuril Islands, was made difficult by rough seas which produced swells reaching heights of 30 to 40 feet (9 to 12 m). Despite the problems imposed by high seas, Tilefish sank a small trawler with her four inch (102 mm) gun on 23 September. Early in October, she destroyed two small cargo vessels as they were leaving Hitokappu Bay, Yetorofu Jima. During the mid-watch on 13 October, an adventurous owl came on board. The feathered seafarer was promptly dubbed Boris Hootski and made official ship's mascot. In the following days, Tilefish claimed two more kills—a cargo ship and a wooden-hulled antisubmarine vessel. On 17 October, to prevent its being salvaged, she blew out the stern of a vessel grounded west of Shimushiru Island. Tilefish ended her third patrol at Midway Island on 24 October 1944.

On 15 November, Tilefish got underway for the Kuril Islands. During the first half of this patrol, she operated in northern waters but was hampered by bitterly cold weather, poor visibility, and hurricane-force winds. The mountainous waves forced the submarine to submerge to ride out the storm. On 25 November, Tilefish entered the Sea of Okhotsk to patrol the coast of Shimushiru. Snow frosted the periscope and prevented accurate identification of possible targets. By 16 December, Tilefish had moved south to take up a lifeguard station off Najima Saki. On the morning of 22 December, she sank Chidori, a torpedo boat, and evaded a Japanese counterattack of depth charges and aerial bombs without damage. She departed the patrol area on 24 December and arrived at Pearl Harbor on 2 January 1945.


Laststandonzombieisland

Here at LSOZI, we are going to take off every Wednesday for a look at the old steam/diesel navies of the 1859-1946 time period and will profile a different ship each week. These ships have a life, a tale all their own, which sometimes takes them to the strangest places. – Christopher Eger

Warship Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2017: I’d like to be back on my horse

USN photo courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com via Navsource

Here we see the Balao-class diesel-electric fleet submarine USS Tilefish (SS-307) returning to San Diego on 5 December 1958 for inactivation. You may not recognize her in the photo, but she was always ready for her closeup.

A member of the 128-ship Balao class, she was one of the most mature U.S. Navy diesel designs of the World War Two era, constructed with knowledge gained from the earlier Gato-class. U.S. subs, unlike those of many navies of the day, were ‘fleet’ boats, capable of unsupported operations in deep water far from home.

Able to range 11,000 nautical miles on their reliable diesel engines, they could undertake 75-day patrols that could span the immensity of the Pacific. Carrying 24 (often unreliable) Mk14 Torpedoes, these subs often sank anything short of a 5000-ton Maru or warship by surfacing and using their 4-inch/50 caliber and 40mm/20mm AAA’s. The also served as the firetrucks of the fleet, rescuing downed naval aviators from right under the noses of Japanese warships.

We have covered a number of this class before, such as Rocket Mail slinging USS Barbero, the carrier-sinking USS Archerfish, the long-serving USS Catfish and the frogman Cadillac USS Perch —but don’t complain, they have lots of great stories.

Laid down at Mare Island Navy Yard in Vallejo, California, on 10 Mar 1943, USS Tilefish was the first and only naval vessel named for homely reef fish found in the world’s oceans.

1916 USBOF sheet on the Tilefish, via NARA

Commissioned just nine months later on 28 Dec 1943, Tilefish completed her trials and shakedown off the California coast and made for the Western Pacific in early 1944.

Broadside view of the Tilefish (SS-307) off Mare Island on 2 March 1944. USN photos # 1434-44 through1436-44, courtesy of Darryl L. Baker. Via Navsource

Her first war patrol, off Honshu in Japanese home waters, was short and uneventful.

Her second, in the Luzon Strait, netted a torpedo hit on the 745-ton Japanese corvette Kaibokan 17 south of Formosa on 18 July.

Her third patrol, in the Sea of Okhotsk and off the Kuril Islands, resulted in sinking a sampan in a surface action, as well as two small cargo ships, a larger cargo ship and the 108-ton Japanese guard boat Kyowa Maru No.2. Tilefish also picked up a Russian owl in these frigid waters, which was duly named Boris Hootski with the ship’s log noting, “He is now official ship’s mascot and stands battle stations on top of the tube blow and vent manifold.”

She closed the year with her fourth patrol in the Kurils and Japanese home waters with sinking the Japanese torpedo boat Chidori some 90 miles WSW of Yokosuka.

Early 1945 saw her fifth patrol which sank a small Japanese coaster and effectively knocked the IJN minesweeper W 15 out of the war. She also plucked LT (JG) William J. Hooks from the USS Hancock (CV-19) of VF-80 out of the water after he had to ditch his F6F at sea off Amami Oshima in the Ryukyus.

After refit on the West Coast, Tilefish completed her sixth patrol on lifeguard station off the Ryukyus where she ended the war, being ordered back to California on 7 September.

In all, Tilefish received five battle stars for World War II service. Her tally included 7 vessels for a total of 10,700 claimed tons– though many were disallowed post-war by JANAC. Her six patrols averaged 48 days at sea.

While most of the U.S. submarine fleet was mothballed in the months immediately after WWII, Tilefish remained in service. She even managed a sinkex in August 1947 against the crippled Liberty tanker SS Schuyler Colfax, at 7,200-tons, Tilefish‘s largest prize.

Her war flag represented as a patch from popularpatch.com. Note the 10 vessels claimed and the parachute for Lt. Hooks.

When the Korean War kicked off in 1950, Tilefish made for the region.

“From 28 September 1950 through 24 March 1951, the submarine operated out of Japanese ports conducting patrols in Korean waters in support of the United Nations campaign in Korea. She made reconnaissance patrols of La Perouse Strait to keep the Commander, Naval Forces Far East, informed of Soviet seaborne activity in that area.”

Tilefish received one battle star for Korean service.

Hula dancers Kuulei Jesse, Gigi White and Dancette Poepoe (left to right) welcome the submarine, as she docks at the Pearl Harbor Submarine Base after a Korean War tour. Crewmen placing the flower lei around Tilefish’s bow are Engineman 3rd Class Donald E. Dunlevy, USN, (left – still wearing E-3 stripes) and Torpedoman’s Mate 1st Class Gordon F. Sudduth, USNR. This photograph was released by Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, on 26 March 1951. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the All Hands collection at the Naval History and Heritage Command. Catalog #: NH 97068

The next nine years saw her conducting regular peacetime operations and exercises including a goodwill visit to Acapulco a survey mission with four civilian geophysicists on board from the Hydrographic Office of Eniwetok, Wake, and Midway and other ops.

USS TILEFISH (SS-307) Caption: Photographed during the 1950s. Description: Courtesy of Commander Donald J. Robinson, USN (MSC), 1974. Catalog #: NH 78988

These “other ops” included filming some scenes for the 1958 Glen Ford WWII submarine flick Torpedo Run, which were extensively augmented by scale models, and more extensive shoots for Up Periscope, a film in which James Garner, a Korean war Army vet and Hollywood cowboy, plays a frogman ordered to photograph a codebook at an isolated Japanese radio station.

The film was an adaption of LCDR Robb White’s book of the same name.

Garner was not impressed by the Tilefish.

James Garner as Lieutenant Kenneth M. Braden in Up Periscope

As related by a Warren Oaks biographer, Garner, bobbing along on the old submarine offshore at 9-kts in groundswells, said, “You know something? I’d like to be back on my horse.”

After her brief movie career and service in two wars, Tilefish was given a rebuild at the San Francisco Navy Yard and was decommissioned in May 1960.

Tilefish was then sold to Venezuela, which renamed her ARV Carite (S-11). As such, she was the first modern submarine in that force. She arrived in that country on 23 July 1960, setting the small navy up to be the fifth in Latin America with subs.

ARV S-11 Carite El 4 de mayo de 1960

As noted by El Snorkel (great name), a Latin American submarine resource, Tilefish/Carite was very active indeed, making 7,287 dives with the Venezuelan Navy over the next 17 years. She participated in the Argentine/Dominican Republic/Venezuelan -U.S. Quarantine Task Force 137 during the Cuban Missile Crisis, and intercepted the Soviet tug Gromoboi in 1968.

In 1966, she was part of the Greater Underwater Propulsion Power Program (GUPPY) conversion program and (along with 20 other boats), was given the very basic Fleet Snorkel package which provided most ofthe bells and whistles found on the German late-WWII Type XXI U-boats– which would later prove ironic. This gave her expanded battery capacity, steamlined her sail conning tower fairwater into a so-called “Northern or North Atlantic sail”– a steel framework surrounded by thick fiberglass– added a snorkel, higher capacity air-conditioning system, and a more powerful electrical system and increased her submerged speed to 15 knots while removing her auxillary diesel. A small topside sonar dome appeared.

ex-Tilefish (SS-307), taken 12 Oct. 1966 after transfer to Venezuela as ARV Carite (S-11). Note the GUPPY series conversion, the so-called very basic “Fleet Snorkel” mod.

However, during this time, her most enduring exposure was in helping film Murphy’s War, in which a German U-boat (U-482) hides out in the Orinoco River in Venezuela after sinking British merchant steamer Mount Kyle, leaving Peter O’Toole as the lone survivor on a hunt to bag the German shark. The thing is, she looked too modern for the film after her recent conversion.

For her role, Carite was given a far-out grey-white-black dazzle camo scheme and, to make her more U-boat-ish, was fitted with a faux cigarette deck after her tower complete with a Boffin 40mm (!) and a twin Oerlikon mount (!!). Her bow was fitted with similarly faked submarine net cutting teeth.

Her “crew” was a mix of U.S. Peace Corps kids working in the area (to get the proper blonde Germanic look) with Venezuelan tars at the controls.

The movie, filmed in decadent Panavision color, shows lots of footage of the old Tilefish including a dramatic ramming sequence with a bone in her teeth and what could be the last and best images of a Balao-class submarine with her decks awash.

Ballasting down– note the very un U-boat like sonar dome. I believe that is a QHB-1 transducer dome to starboard with a BQR-3 hydrophone behind it on port

By the mid-1970s, Tilefish/Carite was showing her age. In 1972, the Venezuelans picked up more two more advanced GUPPY II conversions, her Balao-class sister USS Cubera (SS-347), renaming her ARV Tiburon (S-12) and the Tench-class USS Grenadier (SS-525) which followed as ARV Picua (S-13) in 1973.

The Venezuelan submarine ARV Carite (S-11) demonstrates an emergency surfacing during the UNITAS XI exercise, in 1970. via All Hands magazine

Once the two “new” boats were integrated into the Venezuelan Navy, Tilefish/Carite was decommissioned on 28 January 1977 and slowly cannibalized for spare parts, enabling Cubera and Grenadier to remain in service until 1989 when they were replaced by new-built German Type 209-class SSKs, which still serve to one degree or another.

According to a Polish submarine page, some artifacts from Tilefish including a torpedo tube remain in Venezuela.

Although she is no longer afloat, eight Balao-class submarines are preserved (for now) as museum ships across the country.

Please visit one of these fine ships and keep the legacy alive:

-USS Batfish (SS-310) at War Memorial Park in Muskogee, Oklahoma.
USS Becuna (SS-319) at Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
USS Bowfin (SS-287) at USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park in Honolulu, Hawaii.
USS Clamagore (SS-343) at Patriot’s Point in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. (Which may not be there much longer)
USS Ling (SS-297) at New Jersey Naval Museum in Hackensack, New Jersey. (Which is also on borrowed time)
USS Lionfish (SS-298) at Battleship Cove in Fall River, Massachusetts.
-USS Pampanito (SS-383) at San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park in San Francisco, California, (which played the part of the fictional USS Stingray in the movie Down Periscope).
USS Razorback (SS-394) at Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum in North Little Rock, Arkansas.

However, Tilefish will endure wherever submarine films are enjoyed.

Specs:

Displacement, surfaced: 1,526 t., Submerged: 2,424 t.
Length 311′ 10″
Beam 27′ 3″
Draft 15′ 3″
Speed surfaced 20.25 kts, Submerged 8.75 kts
Cruising Range, 11,000 miles surfaced at 10kts Submerged Endurance, 48 hours at 2kts
Operating Depth Limit, 400 ft.
Patrol Endurance 75 days
Propulsion: diesels-electric reduction gear with four Fairbanks-Morse main generator engines., 5,400 hp, four Elliot Motor Co., main motors with 2,740 hp, two 126-cell main storage batteries, two propellers.
Fuel Capacity: 94,400 gal.
Complement 6 Officers 60 Enlisted
Armament:
(As built)
10 21″ torpedo tubes, six forward, four aft, 24 torpedoes,
one 4″/50 caliber deck gun,
one 40mm gun,
two .50 cal. machine guns
(By 1966)
10 21″ torpedo tubes, six forward, four aft, 24 torpedoes,

If you liked this column, please consider joining the International Naval Research Organization (INRO), Publishers of Warship International

They are possibly one of the best sources of naval study, images, and fellowship you can find. http://www.warship.org/membership.htm

The International Naval Research Organization is a non-profit corporation dedicated to the encouragement of the study of naval vessels and their histories, principally in the era of iron and steel warships (about 1860 to date). Its purpose is to provide information and a means of contact for those interested in warships.

With more than 50 years of scholarship, Warship International, the written tome of the INRO has published hundreds of articles, most of which are unique in their sweep and subject.


Submarines


SS-212 Gato
SS-213 Greenling
SS-214 Grouper to SSK
SS-215 Growler
SS-216 Grunion
SS-217 Guardfish
SS-218 Albacore
SS-219 Amberjack
SS-220 Barb
SS-221 Blackfish
SS-222 Bluefish
SS-223 Bonefish
SS-224 Cod
SS-225 Cero
SS-226 Corvina
SS-227 Darter
SS-228 Drum
SS-229 Flying Fish to AGSS
SS-230 Finback
SS-231 Haddock
SS-232 Halibut
SS-233 Herring
SS-234 Kingfish
SS-235 Shad
SS-236 Silversides to AGSS
SS-237 Trigger
SS-238 Wahoo
SS-239 Whale
SS-240 Angler to SSK
SS-241 Bashaw to SSK
SS-242 Bluegill to SSK
SS-243 Bream to SSK
SS-244 Cavalla to SSK
SS-245 Cobia to AGSS
SS-246 Croaker to SSK
SS-247 Dace
SS-248 Dorado
SS-249 Flasher
SS-250 Flier
SS-251 Flounder
SS-252 Gabilan
SS-253 Gunnel
SS-254 Gurnard
SS-255 Haddo
SS-256 Hake
SS-257 Harder
SS-258 Hoe
SS-259 Jack
SS-260 Lapon
SS-261 Mingo
SS-262 Muskallunge
SS-263 Paddle
SS-264 Pargo
SS-265 Peto
SS-266 Pogy
SS-267 Pompon to SSR
SS-268 Puffer
SS-269 Rasher to SSR & AGSS
SS-270 Raton
SS-271 Ray to SSR
SS-272 Redfin to SSR
SS-273 Robalo
SS-274 Rock to SSR
SS-275 Runner
SS-276 Sawfish
SS-277 Scamp
SS-278 Scorpion
SS-279 Snook
SS-280 Steelhead
SS-281 Sunfish
SS-282 Tunny to SSG
SS-283 Tinosa
SS-284 Tullibee
SS-361 Golet
SS-362 Guavina to SSO
SS-363 Guitarro
SS-364 Hammerhead

SS-285 Balao to AGSS
SS-286 Billfish to AGSS
SS-287 Bowfin to AGSS
SS-288 Cabrilla to AGSS
SS-289 Capelin
SS-290 Cisco
SS-291 Crevalle to AGSS
SS-292 Devilfish to AGSS
SS-293 Dragonet
SS-294 Escolar
SS-295 Hackleback to AGSS
SS-296 Lancetfish
SS-297 Ling to AGSS
SS-298 Lionfish to AGSS
SS-299 Manta to AGSS
SS-300 Moray to AGSS
SS-301 Roncador to AGSS
SS-302 Sabalo
SS-303 Sablefish to AGSS
SS-304 Seahorse to AGSS
SS-305 Skate
SS-306 Tang
SS-307 Tilefish
SS-308 Apogon
SS-309 Aspro
SS-310 Batfish to AGSS
SS-311 Archerfish to AGSS
SS-312 Burrfish to SSR
SS-313 Perch to SSP
SS-314 Shark
SS-315 Sealion to SSP
SS-316 Barbel
SS-317 Barbero to SSG
SS-318 Baya to AGSS
SS-319 Becuna to AGSS
SS-320 Bergall
SS-321 Besugo to AGSS
SS-322 Blackfin
SS-323 Caiman
SS-324 Blenny to AGSS
SS-325 Blower
SS-326 Blueback
SS-327 Boarfish
SS-328 Charr to AGSS
SS-329 Chub
SS-330 Brill
SS-331 Bugara to AGSS
SS-332 Bullhead
SS-333 Bumper
SS-334 Cabezon to AGSS
SS-335 Dentuda to AGSS
SS-336 Capitaine to AGSS
SS-337 Carbonero to AGSS
SS-338 Carp to AGSS
SS-339 Catfish
SS-340 Entemedor
SS-341 Chivo
SS-342 Chopper to AGSS
SS-343 Clamagore
SS-344 Cobbler
SS-345 Cochino
SS-346 Corporal
SS-347 Cubera
SS-348 Cusk to SSG
SS-349 Diodon
SS-350 Dogfish
SS-351 Greenfish
SS-352 Halfbeak

SS-365 Hardhead
SS-366 Hawkbill
SS-367 Icefish
SS-368 Jallao
SS-369 Kete
SS-370 Kraken
SS-371 Lagarto
SS-372 Lamprey
SS-373 Lizardfish
SS-374 Loggerhead to AGSS
SS-375 Macabi
SS-376 Mapiro
SS-377 Menhaden
SS-378 Mero
SS-381 Sand Lance
SS-382 Picuda
SS-383 Pampanito to AGSS
SS-384 Parche to AGSS
SS-385 Bang
SS-386 Pilotfish
SS-387 Pintado to AGSS
SS-388 Pipefish to AGSS
SS-389 Piranha to AGSS
SS-390 Plaice
SS-391 Pomfret
SS-392 Sterlet
SS-393 Queenfish to AGSS
SS-394 Razorback
SS-395 Redfish to AGSS
SS-396 Ronquil
SS-397 Scabbardfish
SS-398 Segundo
SS-399 Sea Cat to AGSS
SS-400 Sea Devil to AGSS
SS-401 Sea Dog to AGSS
SS-402 Sea Fox
SS-403 Atule to AGSS
SS-404 Spikefish to AGSS
SS-405 Sea Owl to AGSS
SS-406 Sea Poacher to AGSS
SS-407 Sea Robin
SS-408 Sennet
SS-409 Piper to AGSS
SS-410 Threadfin
SS-411 Spadefish to AGSS
SS-412 Trepang to AGSS
SS-413 Spot
SS-414 Springer
SS-415 Stickleback
SS-416 Tiru
SS-425 Trumpetfish
SS-426 Tusk

SS-417 Tench to AGSS
SS-418 Thornback
SS-419 Tigrone to SSR
SS-420 Tirante
SS-421 Trutta
SS-422 Toro to AGSS
SS-423 Torsk to AGSS
SS-424 Quillback
SS-435 Corsair
SS-475 Argonaut
SS-476 Runner to AGSS
SS-477 Conger to AGSS
SS-478 Cutlass
SS-479 Diablo
SS-480 Medregal to AGSS
SS-481 Requin to SSR
SS-482 Irex to AGSS
SS-483 Sea Leopard
SS-484 Odax
SS-485 Sirago
SS-486 Pomodon
SS-487 Remora
SS-488 Sarda to AGSS
SS-489 Spinax to SSR
SS-490 Volador
SS-522 Amberjack
SS-523 Grampus
SS-524 Pickerel
SS-525 Grenadier

SS-550 Barracuda ex SSK-1
SS-551 Bass ex K-2 SSK-2
SS-552 Bonita ex K-3 SSK-3

SS-563 Tang
SS-564 Trigger
SS-565 Wahoo
SS-566 Trout
SS-567 Gudgeon
SS-568 Harder


Fifth and Sixth War Patrols

After refitting by submarine tender Orion (AS-18), Tilefish set course for the Mariana Islands in company with submarines Thresher (SS-200) and Peto (SS-265) on 31 January 1945, under the command of Lt. Cmdr. Walter F. Schlech, Jr. En route, she participated in exercises and searched for the survivors of a downed American plane. Underway from Saipan on 13 February, Tilefish proceeded independently to her patrol area in the Nansei Shoto where she prowled the traffic lanes in search of targets. She reported sinking a 90-ton cargo ship in a morning gun attack on 28 February before taking up a lifeguard station in support of planned strikes on Amami Shima. On 1 March, she rescued a flier from aircraft carrier Hancock (CV-19) whose plane had splashed and sank only 500 yards off the starboard bow of the submarine. She sent a fishing trawler to the bottom on 4 March. On the following day, in the course of a day-long attack on a freighter, she sank a Japanese minesweeper which was escorting the cargo ship. From 10 March to 19 March, she performed lifeguard duties in support of strikes on Nagoya and other Japanese targets. After patrolling the approaches to Tokyo Bay on 22 March, Tilefish set course, via Midway Island and Pearl Harbor, for San Francisco, California where she was overhauled.

Tilefish returned to Pearl Harbor on 11 July and was soon underway for Midway Island and Saipan. When the war in the Pacific ended, Tilefish was on lifeguard station off the Ryukyu Islands. She continued lifeguard duties and patrols in the western Pacific until 7 September when she returned to Pearl Harbor. Early in 1946, Tilefish returned to San Francisco, California, and operated off the West Coast throughout most of the year. In May, she participated in wolf pack exercises and in September took part in live load training, using the hulk of the former SS Schuyler Colfax as a target. In October, she made a brief trip to the Hawaiian Islands and then returned to the West Coast. From January 1947 to September 1950, Tilefish continued to operate out of California ports with occasional voyages to Pearl Harbor. During this period, she conducted underway training and took part in fleet exercises off the West Coast.


Tilefish SS-307Tilefish SS-307 - History

(SS-276: dp. 1,526 (surf.), 2,410 (subm.) 1. 311'8" b. 27'4" dr. 15'3" s. 20.25 k. (surf.), 8.75 (subm.) cpl. 60, a. 10 21' tt., 1 3", 2 .50 eel. mg., 2 .30 eel. mg. cl. Gato)

Sawfish (SS-276) was laid down on 20 January 1942 by the Portsmouth Navy Yard, Portsmouth, N.H.

launched on 23 June 1942 sponsored by the Honorable Hattie Wyatt Caraway, the first woman to be elected to the United States Senate and commissioned on 26 August 1942, Lt. Comdr. Eugene T. Sands in command.

After shakedown-off Portsmouth, in Narragansett Bay, and en route to the Panama Canal-the new submarine arrived at Pearl Harbor on 21 January 1943. Ten days later, she got underway for the first of her 10 war patrols.

Sawfish proceeded to waters off southwestern Japan where she attacked several targets and concluded that she had sunk or damaged some. However, a careful study of Japanese and American records after the war did not confirm any sinkings on Sawfish's first war patrol which ended when she reached Midway on 25 March.

The submarine departed Midway on 15 April and headed for Japan. On 5 May off the coast of Honshu she sank the converted gunboat, Hakkai Maru. A fortnight later, she stalked an enemy task force but lost her quarry in heavy swells. She returned to Pearl Harbor on 6 June.

Underway again on the last day of the month Sawfish set course for the East China Sea. On the night of 21 July, she attacked a convoy of nine ships and concluded that she had scored several hits. However, postwar assessment of records was unable to confirm any kills during this attack or during her operations for the next five days.

Finally, early on the morning of the 27th, her luck finally changed when she attacked a convoy escorted by a 720-ton minelayer. Comdr. Sands fired a spread of four torpedoes from a range of only 750 yards. He went deep as soon as the "fish" were clear and, in less than half a minute, the submarine was jolted by a violent explosion. Fearing that the detonation had been premature, Sands remained deep for over an hour. When he ascended to periscope depth, the convoy had escaped, but the escort, coastal minelayer, Hirashima was sinking. Sawfish returned to Pearl Harbor on 10 August.

During her fourth patrol, 10 September to 16 October, defective torpedoes frustrated the seven attacks which she made in the Sea of Japan before she returned to Midway. She got underway for the Bonins and her fifth patrol on 1 November. On 8 December she sank 3,267-ton passenger-cargo ship, Sansei Maru and returned to Midway on the 19th. She soon proceeded to Hunter's Point Navy Yard, San Francisco Calif., for overhaul.

Back in top trim, the submarine returned to Pearl Harbor early in the spring. On 8 April 1944, she got underway for Japanese waters and her sixth war patrol. However, she only encountered two targets: a cargo ship which she attacked on the 25th and a second vessel which she sighted four days later-too fast and too far away for the submarine to attack. Although the submarine reported scoring two hits on the cargo ship, Japanese records contain no evidence of any sinking in the vicinity of the attack.

During her seventh war patrol, Sawfish joined Rock (SS-274) and Tilefish (SS 307) for wolfpack operations. The submarines sortied from Majuro on 22 June and headed for the Philippines. On 18 July, she damaged a tanker and, on the 26th, fired a spread of four torpedoes at surfaced Japanese submarine, 1-29, which exploded and sank. After a fruitless chase of a large Japanese convoy the wolfpack ended the patrol at Pearl Harbor on 15 August.

During Sawfish's eighth war patrol, her commanding officer, Comdr. Alan B. Banister, led a wolfpack which included Drum (SS-228), Icefish (SS-367) and from time to time other submarines. The pack departed Pearl Harbor on 9 September and headed for waters south of Formosa where the submarines took a heavy toll on enemy shipping. Sawfish, herself, accounted for 6,521-ton tanker, Tachibana Maru, on 9 October and 6,838-ton seaplane tender, Kimikawa Maru, on the 23d. During the patrol, Sawfish also served on lifeguard station off Formosa in support of carrier raids. On 16 October, she rescued a pilot who had survived four and one half days at sea in a small rubber boat without food, water, or sunshade. The wolfpack returned to Majuro on 8 November.

Sawfish got underway on 17 December 1944 and returned to waters off Formosa where she spent her entire ninth war patrol on lifeguard station. She rescued a pilot on 21 January 1945 before heading toward Guam. She reached Apra Harbor on 4 February for refit.

Sawfish sailed on 10 March for her 10th and last war patrol which she spent on lifeguard station off Nansei Shoto supporting air strikes preparing for and covering the conquest of Okinawa. She returned to Pearl Harbor on 26 April and soon proceeded to San Francisco for overhaul in the Bethlehem Steel Company yard there. She was ready for action and heading toward Hawaii on 15 August when hostilities ended. She reached Pearl Harbor on the 22nd but soon headed back to the west coast for duty as a training ship for the West Coast Fleet Sound School. She returned to Hawaii early in 1946, but was back at San Francisco on 22 March for inactivation. She was decommissioned on 26 June 1946 and remained in reserve at Mare Island until May 1947 when she proceeded to San Pedro for duty as a Naval Reserve training ship. On 1 April 1960, Sawfish was struck from the Navy list and scrapped.


At the end of each war patrol of WW II, submarine commanders created a report on the patrol. These reports were used as the raw material to inform intelligence, improve tactics, evaluate commanders, etc. During WW II, over 1,550 patrol reports containing approximately 63,000 pages were generated. During the 1970s these were photographed and reproduced on microfilm to make them more easly accessible and easily reproduced (approx. 250 rolls). During 2008 a copy of this microfilm was scanned into digital format (110 GB), and in 2009 it was made available online here (14 GB).

These war patrol reports were written during a deadly, bitterly fought war. Please note that there may be some references to enemy forces that may be offensive in today’s context.

At the end of the war patrol reports there are appendicies that provide tabulations of information accross multiple war patrols. In addition, there is an Excel formatted spreadsheet with the Special Operation Research Group Summary of US Submarine Attacks in WW II.

We thank John Clear EMC (SS) USN Ret. and Dan Martini EMCM(SS) USN Ret. for their generous donation of the digital copies of these war patrol reports used to create this online version. We also wish to thank the Naval Undersea Museum for loaning their microfilm copies of the war patrol reports for the project. The online versions have been compressed and optimized for online reading by webmaster Rich Pekelney, higher resolutions versions on DVD that may print or OCR better may be purchased from http://www.usssealion.com/ (Unrelated to HNSA). Many of the original documents without any reproduction artifacts many be found at the US National Archives and Record Administration in College Park, Maryland.

We are using the commercial service issuu.com to provide fast access over the web to this large collection. Problems viewing the reports will most likely be fixed by using a recent version of the free Adobe Flash Player. You will also need a recent version of one of the popular web browsers (i.e. Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox or Apple Safari) with javascript and cookies turned on.

If you are using a slow internet connection you will see a fuzzy version of each page while the page is downloaded for display.

Copyright © 1997-2021, Historic Naval Ships Association
All Rights Reserved.


Watch the video: Howard golden tile fish (May 2022).


Comments:

  1. Pallatin

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  2. Sim

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  6. Agamemnon

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  7. Loe

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