Please report any broken links or trouble you might come across to the Webmaster. Please take a moment to let us know so that we can correct any problems and make your visit as enjoyable and as informative as possible.

NavSource Online:
Motor Torpedo Boat Photo Archive


Call sign:
Nan - Xray - Zebra - Mike

80' Elco Motor Torpedo Boat:

  • Laid down 3 June 1942 by the Electric Boat Co., Elco Works, Bayonne, NJ
  • Launched 26 August 1942
  • Completed 9 September 1942, placed in service and assigned to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron SEVEN (MTBRon 7) under the command of Lt. Rollin E. Westholm, USN
  • MTBRon 7, assigned to the Southwest Pacific, had action in New Guinea waters at Tufi, Morobe, Kiriwina, Dreger Harbor, and Aitape, and in Philippine waters at San Pedro Bay and at Ormoc. The
    squadron based for a time at Kana Kopa, New Guinea; Thursday Island, Australia; Ferusson Island, d'Entrecasteaux Group; and Mios Woendi, Dutch New Guinea, but had no action at these bases. PT's 127-132 were on detached duty at Thursday Island from June to August 1943 as Motor Torpedo Boat Division 19, under command of Lt. Comdr. Robert J. Bulkley, Jr., USNR. MTBRon 7 was awarded the Navy Unit Commendation for action in the New Guinea area from April 1, 1944, to February 1, 1945
  • Transferred 15 February 1945 to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron TWENTY ONE (MTBRon 21) under the command of Lt. Carl T. Gleasond, USN
  • MTBRon 21, assigned to the Southwest Pacific, had action at Morobe, Dreger Harbor, and Mios Woendi in New Guinea; at Manus in the Admiralties; and at San Pedro Bay and Subic Bay in the
    Philippines. It also based for a time at Kana Kopa, New Guinea, and at Samar and Basilan Island in the Philippines, but had no action from these bases
  • The "Tarfu", ex-"Itarie" was placed out of service, stripped and destroyed by U.S. Forces 10 November 1945 at Samar, Philippines.


  • Displacement 56 t.
  • Length 80'
  • Beam 20' 8"
  • Draft 5'
  • Speed 41 kts.
  • Complement 17
  • Armament: One 40mm mount, one 37mm mount, two 20mm mounts, four 21" Torpedoes and two twin .50 cal. machine guns
  • Propulsion: Three 1,500shp Packard W-14 M2500 gasoline engines, three shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    PT-131 537k 26 August 1942
    Bayonne, NJ
    Jerry Gilmartin, MMC(SW), USN, Ret.
    PT-131 205k Refueling
    PT-131 145k Photo from the collection of Robert James Owen, PT-121
    Michael Owen
    Mike Owen
    Photo added 18 April 2021
    PT-131 230k Original photo: PT-131 (center) and crewmen preparing for the Battle of Surigao Strait in October 1944. A single 20 mm Oerlikon and a twin .50 cal. Browning machine gun can be seen forward of the bridge, also part of an Army 37 mm M4 or M9 aircraft cannon can be seen to the right. Also shown are two Mk 8 rocket launchers (with blast deflectors behind), twin .50 cal. Browning machine gun mount at side of bridge, 22.4" Mk 13 torpedoes either side of bridge and an Army 60 mm mortar on top of bridge
    U.S.Navy photo from "Naval Weapons of World War Two" by John Campbell
    Replacement photo: PT-131 and other ELCO type motor torpedo boats preparing for the Battle of Surigao Strait, about 24 October 1944. Photographed from USS Wachapreague (AGP-8). Mark XIII torpedos, rockets, mortar (atop PT-131's forward deckhouse), 20mm machine cannon and .50 caliber machine guns carried by these PT boats
    National Archives photo 80-G-345819
    Original photo: Robert Hurst
    Replacement photo: Naval History and Heritage Command

    Boat Captains
    01LTJG Joseph R. Ellicott, USNR - Awarded the Silver Star (1943)December 1943
    02ENS Peter R. Gadd, USNR - Awarded the Silver StarOctober 1944
    Courtesy Joe Radigan

    There is no DANFS history available for PT-131
    Back to the Main Photo Index Back to the Patrol Craft/Gunboat/Submarine Chaser Index Back to the Motor Torpedo Boat (PT) Photo Index

    Comments, Suggestions, E-mail Webmaster

    This page created by Joseph M. Radigan and maintained by Tom Bateman
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History