Yokosuka Naval District

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Yokosuka Naval HQ in April 1942

Yokosuka Naval District (横須賀鎮守府, Yokosuka chinjufu) was the first of four main administrative districts of the pre-war Imperial Japanese Navy. Its territory included Tokyo Bay and the Pacific coasts of central and northern Honshū from the Kii Peninsula to Shimokita Peninsula. Its headquarters, along with most of its installations, including the Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, were located in the city of Yokosuka, which constituted the Yokosuka Naval Base.

The location of Yokosuka at the entrance to strategic Tokyo Bay was recognized of critical importance by the Tokugawa shogunate and early Meiji government. In 1866, the Tokugawa shogunate government established the Yokosuka Seisakusho, a military arsenal and naval base, with the help of foreign engineers, including the French naval architect Léonce Verny. The new facility was intended to produce modern, western-style warships and equipment for the Tokugawa navy. After the Boshin War and the Meiji Restoration, the new Meiji government took over control of the facility in 1871, renaming it the Yokosuka Zosenjo (Yokosuka Shipyards). In August 1876, the Imperial Japanese Navy was organized into eastern and a western strategic zones, with the eastern zone Tōkai chinjufu (東海鎮守府) based at Yokosuka, and the western zone Saikai chinjufu (西海鎮守府) based at Nagasaki. However, for ease of communications with naval headquarters in Tokyo, the Tōkai Naval District was relocated to Yokohama in September 1876.

With the reorganization of the Imperial Japanese Navy in April 1886, Japan was divided into five naval districts for recruiting and supply, and the headquarters for the Tokai Naval District was relocated back to Yokosuka, becoming the Yokosuka Naval District, and the Yokosuka Naval Arsenal was placed under its command. As with all naval districts, it was under the direction of the Navy Ministry during peacetime, and came under the command of the fleets stationed within the district in time of war.[1] A Bureau of Torpedo Warfare was established at Yokusuka in June 1885. In a further administrative re-organization of the Japanese Navy in 1889, Yokosuka was designated as the “First Naval District” (第一海軍区, dai-ichi kaigunku), and its harbor was dredged, a breakwater extended and docking facilities for warships were increased. A Bureau of Mine Warfare was also established. In 1893, schools for naval mechanical engineering, torpedo warfare and naval artillery were established. Schools for naval engineering, and for mine warfare followed in 1907 and a naval medical center in 1908. Naval aviation facilities were established in June 1912, followed by a wireless communications facility in April 1913.

On January 14, 1917, the armoured cruiser Tsukuba exploded and sank in Yokosuka port in an accident. The Naval Construction Department was established in 1921. In June 1930, a Naval Communications School was established, but the Naval Mine School was made independent of the naval district. A Naval Aviation School was established in April 1934.

At the time of the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, Yokosuka Naval District encompassed the following [2]

  • Yokosuka Naval District HQ
    • Yokosuka Naval Base
      • Yokosuka Naval Base HQ
      • Yokosuka Communications Center
      • Yokosuka Supply Department
      • Accounting Department
      • Construction Department
      • Ports & Docks Unit
      • Yokosuka Naval Arsenal
      • Naval Hospital
      • Naval Prison
      • Naval Fuel Depot
      • Yokosuka Base Garrison
      • Yokosuka 1st Naval Barracks[3]
      • Yokosuka 2nd Naval Barracks[3]
      • Yokosuka Special Naval Landing Forces
    • Yokosuka Submarine Base
    • Yokosuka Security Squadron[3]
      • Auxiliary Cruiser Noshiro Maru, Auxiliary gunboat Shoei Maru, Meiji Maru No. 1
      • Yokosuka Local Defence Squadron[3]
      • Minesweeper Division 25; Auxiliary minesweeper Misago Maru No. 1, Misago Maru No. 3, Kongo Maru No. 2, Naruo Maru, Shintohoku Maru, Togo Maru
      • Minesweeper Division 26; Auxiliary minesweeper Banshu Maru No. 18, Keijin Maru No. 1, Keijin Maru No. 2, Showa Maru No. 10,
    • Submarine tender Komahashi[3]
    • Destroyer Sawakaze, Yugumo[3]
    • Submarine Chaser No. 22, No. 23[3]
    • Yokosuka Naval Air Group (Oppama)
    • Tateyama Naval Air Group
    • Kisarazu Naval Air Group
    • 11th Combined Air Group (Training)
      • Kasumigaura Naval Air Group
      • Tsukuba Naval Air Group
      • Yatabe Naval Air Group
      • Hyakurihara Naval Air Group (Ibaraki Pref)
      • Kashima Naval Air Group
      • Suzuka Naval Air Group
      • Tsuchiura Naval Air Group

Yokosuka was bombed by United States Navy and United States Army Air Forces aircraft in the final stages of the Pacific War, most notably during the attack on Yokosuka on 18 July 1945, but many of its facilities were captured intact by the Allied forces. The Yokosuka area came under occupation by American forces during the occupation of Japan, and most of the facilities of the former Yokosuka Naval District were inherited by the United States 7th Fleet and are now known as United States Fleet Activities Yokosuka. A small portion of the area continues to be used by the modern post-war Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force, which has preserved a portion of the original red brick gates.

List of commanders[edit]

Commander of Tōkai Naval District[edit]

No. Name Portrait Rank Term of Office
Start End
1 Itō Sukemaro Itou Sukemaro.jpg Vice Admiral 5 September 1876 5 March 1880
2 Abo Kiyoyasu Abo Kiyoyasu.jpg Rear Admiral 5 March 1880 4 December 1880
3 Nakamuta Kuranosuke Nakamuta Kuranosuke.jpg Vice Admiral 4 December 1880 17 June 1881
4 Nire Kagenori Nire Kagenori.jpg Vice Admiral 17 June 1881 12 October 1882
5 Nakamuta Kuranosuke Nakamuta Kuranosuke.jpg Vice Admiral 12 October 1882 14 December 1884


Director of Yokusuka Naval District[edit]

No. Name Portrait Rank Term of Office
Start End
1 Nakamuta Kuranosuke Nakamuta Kuranosuke.jpg Vice Admiral 14 December 1884 26 April 1886

Commanding officers of Yokusuka Naval District[edit]

No. Name Portrait Rank Term of Office
Start End
1 Nakamuta Kuranosuke Nakamuta Kuranosuke.jpg Vice Admiral 26 April 1886 8 March 1889
2 Nire Kagenori Nire Kagenori.jpg Vice Admiral 8 March 1889 17 June 1891
3 Akamatsu Noriyoshi Akamatsu Noriyoshi.jpg Vice Admiral 17 June 1891 12 December 1892
4 Itō Sukeyuki Itoh Sukeyuki.jpg Vice Admiral 12 December 1892 20 May 1893
5 Inoue Yoshika Fleet Admiral Viscount Yoshika Inoue.jpg Vice Admiral 20 May 1893 16 February 1895
6 Aiura Norimichi Aiura Norimichi.jpg Vice Admiral 16 February 1895 9 April 1897
7 Tsuboi Kōzō Tsuboi Kozo.jpg Vice Admiral 9 April 1897 30 January 1898
8 Samejima Kazunori Kazunori Samejima.jpg Vice Admiral 1 February 1898 19 January 1899
9 Aiura Norimichi Aiura Norimichi.jpg Vice Admiral 19 January 1899 20 May 1900
10 Inoue Yoshika Fleet Admiral Viscount Yoshika Inoue.jpg Vice Admiral

Admiral (after 12 December 1901

20 May 1900 20 December 1905
11 Kamimura Hikonojō Admiral Kamimura.jpg Vice Admiral 20 December 1905 1 December 1909
12 Uryū Sotokichi Uryu Sotokichi.jpg Vice Admiral

Admiral (after 16 October 1912)

1 December 1909 1 December 1912
13 Yamada Hikohachi Yamada Hikohachi.jpg Vice Admiral 1 December 1912 29 May 1914
14 Ijichi Suetaka Vice Admiral 29 May 1914 23 September 1915
15 Fujii Kōichi Fujii Kouihi.jpg Vice Admiral 23 September 1915 1 December 1916
16 Prince Higashifushimi Yorihito HIH Prince Yorihito Higashifushimi.jpg Vice Admiral 1 December 1916 1 December 1917
17 Nawa Matahachirō Nawa Matahachirou.jpg Vice Admiral

Admiral (after 2 July 1918)

1 December 1917 24 August 1920
18 Yamaya Tanin Yamaya Tanin.jpg Admiral 24 August 1920 27 July 1922
19 Takarabe Takeshi Takeshi Takarabe.jpg Admiral 27 July 1922 15 May 1923
20 Nomaguchi Kaneo Nomaguchi Kaneo.jpg Admiral 15 May 1923 5 February 1924
21 Horinouchi Saburō Saburo Horiuchi.jpg Vice Admiral 5 February 1924 1 December 1924
22 Katō Hiroharu Hiroharu Katō.jpg Vice Admiral 1 December 1924 10 December 1926
23 Okada Keisuke Keisuke Okada 2.jpg Admiral 10 December 1926 20 April 1927
24 Abo Kiyokazu Abo Kiyokazu.jpg Admiral 20 April 1927 16 May 1928
25 Yoshikawa Yasuhira Vice Admiral 16 May 1928 10 December 1928
26 Yamamoto Eisuke Eisuke Yamamoto.jpg Vice Admiral 10 December 1928 11 November 1929
27 Ōsumi Mineo Mineo Osumi.jpg Vice Admiral

Admiral (after 1 April 1931)

11 November 1929 1 December 1931
28 Nomura Kichisaburō Kichisaburō Nomura.jpg Vice Admiral 1 December 1931 2 February 1932
29 Yamamoto Eisuke Eisuke Yamamoto.jpg Admiral 2 February 1932 10 October 1932
30 Nomura Kichisaburō Kichisaburō Nomura.jpg Vice Admiral

Admiral (after 1 March 1933)

10 October 1932 15 November 1933
31 Nagano Osami Osami Nagano.jpg Vice Admiral

Admiral (after 30 March 1934)

15 November 1933 15 November 1934
32 Suetsugu Nobumasa Nobumasa Suetsugu 2.jpg Admiral 15 November 1934 2 December 1935
33 Yonai Mitsumasa Yonai Mitsumasa cropped.jpg Vice Admiral 2 December 1935 1 December 1936
34 Hyakutake Gengo Hyakutake Gengo.JPG Vice Admiral

Admiral (after 1 April 1937)

1 December 1936 25 April 1938
35 Hasegawa Kiyoshi Kiyoshi Hasegawa cropped.jpg Vice Admiral

Admiral (after 1 April 1939)

25 April 1938 1 May 1940
36 Oikawa Koshirō Oikawa koshirō.JPG Admiral 1 May 1940 5 September 1940
37 Shiozawa Kōichi Shiozawa kōichi.JPG Admiral 5 September 1940 10 September 1941
38 Shimada Shigetarō Shimada Shigetarō.JPG Admiral 10 September 1941 18 October 1941
39 Hirata Noboru Vice Admiral 18 October 1941 10 November 1942
40 Koga Mineichi Koga Mineichi 3.jpg Admiral 10 November 1942 21 April 1943
Acting

Commander

Mikawa Gunichi Gunichi Mikawa.jpg Vice Admiral 21 April 1943 21 May 1943
41 Toyoda Soemu Toyoda Soemu.JPG Admiral 21 May 1943 3 May 1944
42 Yoshida Zengo Yoshida Zengo.jpg Admiral 3 May 1944 2 August 1944
43 Nomura Naokuni Nomura Naokuni.jpg Admiral 2 August 1944 15 September 1944
44 Tsukahara Nishizō Nishio Tsukahara.jpg Vice Admiral 15 September 1944 1 May 1945
45 Tozuka Michitarō Totsuka Michitaro.jpg Vice Admiral 1 May 1945 20 November 1945
Acting

Commander

Komura Keizō Komura Keizō.jpg Rear Admiral 20 November 1945 30 November 1945

References[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ Evans 1979, p. 29.
  2. ^ [1] Order of Battle, 1941 as found on niehorster.orbat.com
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Senshi Sōsho (1975), appendix table "Order of battle of the Combined Fleet on 10 December 1941".
Bibliography
  • Evans, David (1979). Kaigun: Strategy, Tactics, and Technology in the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1887-1941. Annapolis, MD: US Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-192-7. 
  • Prados, John (1995). Combined Fleet Decoded: The Secret History of American Intelligence and the Japanese Navy in World War II. Annapolis, MD: US Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-460-02474-4. 
  • Senshi Sōsho Vol. 80, Combined Fleet #2, "Until June 1942", Asagumo Simbun (Tokyo, Japan), 1975.