Preface U.S. Naval Chronology Of W.W.II


Prepared in the Naval History Division, Office of the Chief of Naval 
Operations, Navy Department.

Published by the United States Government Printing Office, Washington, 
D.C., 1955

Transcribed by Larry W. Jewell,
(Please see README.TXT for information on this document.)

Preface to United States Naval chronology, World War II

This United States Naval Chronology, World War II has been 
complied in the Naval History Division of the Office of Naval 
Operations, Navy Department, as a reference volume for official and 
general use.  The starting point is September 1, 1939, the date marking 
the opening of World War II hostilities.

In order to avoid constant repetition of "U.S.", "U.S.S.", 
"U.S.N.", etc., all ships, forces, aircraft, bases or stations, and 
names of individuals appearing in the Chronology are American, unless 
otherwise indicated.  If a possibility existed for misunderstanding as 
to nationality, an appropriate identifer has been used.  To illustrate: 
United States bases or stations established in territory not normally 
under the United States flag have United States before the name of the 
activity; American officers named in entries concerning Allied 
operations have "USN", "USMC", or "USA" following their names.

The local date at the place of the event recorded has been used 
but for one purposeful exception: the Gilbert Islands campaign in the 
fall of 1943.  These islands are in east longitude close to the 
International Date Line, but as most of the action reports were found to 
use west longitude dates, the same have been accepted in the Chronology.

Latitudes and longitudes shown for ship sinkings and damagings 
have been arrived at by using the best available data.  Nevertheless, 
they must be approached with reservation, for in any number of instances 
the original records only give approximate position.

No amphibious types smaller than the Landing Ship Tank (LST) have 
been included with the ship casualties.

It is believed that the abbreviations and designations used in the 
Chronology will be understood without difficulty.  United States naval 
ships are always shown with the type written before the name, and the 
type designator and individual hull number following in parenthesis, 
i.e., submarine Gato (SS-212), destroyer Bailey (DD-492).  Naval 
aircraft squadron designators may not be as familiar.  Their meanings 

 VB....Bombing Squadron
VPB....Patrol Bombing Squadron
 VC....Composite Squadron
 VR....Transport Squadron
 VP....Patrol Squadron
 VS....Scouting Squadron
 VT....Torpedo Squadron

The initial draft for a naval chronology was prepared in the Naval 
History Division by Lt. Comdr. Dorothy E. Richard, USN (W), with 
assistance from Mrs. Constance D. Lathrop, then Navy Department 
Librarian, and the Library staff.  Rear Adm. Samuel Eliot Morison, USNR 
(Ret.), reviewed the manuscript at this stage, and offered many helpful 
suggestions.  Comdr. Miles S. Whitener, USN, checked it, particularly 
with an eye for naval aviation items.

In 1954, the chronology draft was turned over to Mr. William J. 
Morgan (Lt. Comdr., USNR, Inactive), Head of the Historical Research 
Section in the Naval History Division, with instructions to prepare the 
manuscript for publication.  It was rewritten, revised, and reexamined 
in the light of sources made available since the original was complied.  
In bringing the Chronology to its present form, Mr. Morgan had the 
research assistance of Lt. Harold P. Deeley, Jr., USN; Lt. Jack F. 
Ayers, USN; Lt.(jg.) Thomas J. Wohlgemuth, USNR; Lt. (jg.) William J. 
Keogh, USNR; Lt. (jg) Henry A, Vadnais, Jr., USNR; and Lt. (jg.) Edwin 
S. Mullett, USNR. assigned to his Section at different times.

Conspicuous among those who supplied answers to innumerable 
questions are Miss Loretta I. MacCrindle, Head of the Classified 
Operational Archives Branch, naval History Division, and her assistant, 
Miss Barbara A. Gilmore; Mr. Frederick S. Meigs, in the Navy Department 
Library; Miss Meta K. Hannay, of the Shore Establishment Development and 
Maintenance Division, and Mr. Adrian O. Van Wyen in the Aviation History 
Unit of the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations; Miss Helen R. 
Fairbanks, in the Bureau of Yards and Docks, and Mrs. Jessie M. Miller, 
in the Bureau of Ships.  Much information for Appendix I was supplied by 
Mrs. Olive A. Finch, in the Officer Records Branch of the Bureau of 
Naval Personnel. Mr. Roger Pineau and Mr. Donald R. Martin, assistants 
to Rear Admiral Morison, in the Operational History Section, Naval 
History Division, dug into their files for essential material.  A 
difficult and lengthy typing job was handled by Samuel C. Anaya, YN2, 
USN; Raymond E. Gorsky, YN2, USN; and Miss Nancy J. Lindemuth.  Charts 
for the end pages were prepared by the Hydrographic Office.  At various 
stages, and in the final editing, I had the help and constructive 
criticism of Capt. Samuel G. Kelly, USN (Ret.), Assistant Director of 
Naval History.

To all go appreciation and thanks.

John B. Heffernan, Retired Admiral, USN (Ret.)

Directory of Naval History

Washington, D.C., 

March 17, 1955