The primary sources for this volume are the official records of the U.S. Army, Navy, and Marine Corps and the various strategic planning agencies both American and Allied. The draft narratives and reports of interviews prepared by Army field historians during or shortly after the campaign constitute an almost equally important source of information. During the preparation of the volume, most of the leading participants in the campaign were consulted and their letters and comments on the early drafts of the manuscript have proved invaluable. The various services have prepared special studies of the campaign, or particular aspects of it, and these have been most useful, as have the many works published since World War II, especially the official Marine Corps histories and the semiofficial history of naval operations authored by Samuel Eliot Morison. Finally, Japanese records, both in the original and in translation, have been exhaustively examined.
The records relating to strategic planning on the highest Allied and U.S. levels were maintained by the Combined Chiefs of Staff (Allied) and U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff and its subordinate committees, particularly the Joint War Plans Committee and the Joint Strategic Survey Committee. Copies of these records were kept for the Army by the Strategic Policy Group of the Operations Division and are identified by the initials ABC. They are in the custody of the World War II Records Division, National Archives and Records Service (NARS). Other papers on planning for the Marianas Campaign are to be found in the OPD central files, also World War II Records Division, NARS.
The official U.S. Army records form the backbone of this study. The three general types most frequently consulted were operation plans (or field orders), after action reports, and unit journals. The after action reports include those of the highest theater command, Headquarters, U.S. Army Forces in the Central Pacific Area (USAFICPA); the XXIV Corps Artillery; and the 27th and 77th Infantry Divisions and their component regiments and battalions. The unit journals--on the level of division, regiment, and battalion--with their minute-by-minute record of combat actions as reported to and seen by the various unit commanders, are for the most part the most reliable and complete of all official records. Generally speaking, the lower the unit, the more detailed is the official journal. Most of these records are in the custody of World War II Records Division, NARS, although many administrative files and some unit journals are in the Kansas City Records Center, AGO.
Another important source of information on the operations of the 27th Infantry Division on Saipan and especially the events leading to the relief of Lt. Gen. Ralph Smith is the Buckner Report, with its many annexes (designated exhibits), a copy of which is located in the World War II Records Division, NARS. General Ralph Smith himself submitted to the Commanding General, USAFICPA, a special preliminary report and Brig. Gen. Ogden J. Ross prepared a special "summary of operations of the 27th Infantry Division on Saipan." Both of the latter are located in the World War II Records Division, NARS.
For the U.S. Navy, the same types of records have been used, except that it has not been felt necessary to consult ships' logs, which are the naval equivalent of the unit journal. Naval action reports1 consulted include those of the Commander in Chief, U.S. Fleet, and Chief of Naval Operations; Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet, and Commander in Chief, Pacific Ocean Areas (monthly from February through August 1944); Commander, Fifth Fleet; Commander, Joint Expeditionary Force Marianas; Commanders Task Forces 52 and 53 and their subordinate commands; and in some few cases individual ships' reports. All World War II U.S. Navy records are located in the classified Operational Records Branch, Naval History Division, and copies of most of those used in this volume are to be found in the World War II Records Division, NARS, or in the Records and Research Section, Historical Branch, G-3, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps.
U.S. Marine Corps
Marine Corps action reports and daily journals have been covered in the same manner as those of the Army, except that it has not been felt necessary to consult Marine battalion reports and journals. Most frequent use has been made of the reports of Headquarters Expeditionary Troops (Task Force 56); Northern Troops and Landing Force (V Amphibious Corps); Southern Troops and Landing Force (III Amphibious Corps); 2d Marine Division; 4th Marine Division; 3d Marine Division; the 1st Marine Provisional Brigade; and the appropriate regimental reports and journals. These records are located in the Records and Research Section, Historical Branch, G-3, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps.
Interviews, Field Histories, and Letters
Each of the two Army operations described here was covered by a field historian and a team of specialists sent by Headquarters, U.S. Army Forces in the Central Pacific Area, to accompany the troops during the fighting on Saipan and Guam. For Saipan the historian was Capt. Edmund G. Love; for Guam, S. Sgt. James M. Burns. Each took extensive notes and made reports of interviews in the field, and each prepared draft narratives of the operations he covered. These manuscripts are filed in the Office of the Chief of Military
History (OCMH), Department of the Army.
Early drafts of this volume were submitted to a large number of Army, Navy, and Marine Corps officers who played significant roles in the campaign. Many of them, in response, submitted suggestions, corrections, and additional information, all of which was invaluable in the preparation of the book in its final form. They are:2 Col. Leonard A. Bishop, AUS (Ret.); Lt. Gen. Andrew D. Bruce, USA (Ret.); Admiral Richard L. Conolly, USN (Ret.); Col. Joseph B. Coolidge, USA; Lt. Gen. Pedro A. del Valle, USMC (Ret.); General Graves B. Erskine, USMC (Ret.); Brig. Gen. Charles B. Ferris, USAR; Maj. Gen. Wallace M. Greene, Jr., USMC; Maj. Gen George W. Griner, Jr., USA (Ret.); Vice Adm. Harry W. Hill, USN (Ret.); General John R. Hodge, USA (Ret.); Lt. Gen. Robert Hogaboom, USMC; Brig. Gen. Gerard W. Kelley, USAR; Brig. Gen. Redmond Kernan, Jr., AUS (Ret.); Col. Gordon T. Kimbrell, USA; the late Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King, USN; Col. James E. Landrum, Jr., USA; General of the Army Douglas MacArthur; Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, USN (Ret.); the late Vice Adm. Lawrence Reifsnider, USN; Lt. Gen. Clark L. Ruffner, USA; General Harry Schmidt, USMC (Ret.); General Lemuel C. Shepherd, Jr., USMC (Ret.); General Holland M. Smith, USMC (Ret.); Brig. Gen. Isaac Spalding, USA (Ret.) Admiral Raymond A. Spruance, USN (Ret.); General Allen H. Turnage, USMC (Ret.); and Lt. Gen. Thomas E. Watson, USMC (Ret.).
Among other sources used were several special studies prepared after the campaign, either under the official auspices of particular commands or by individuals attached to the historical sections of the various services. In the first category are: Headquarters, Central Pacific Command, Target Saipan; A Story of XXIV Corps Artillery; and Army Air Forces Historical Division, Army Air Forces in the Marianas Campaign. Copies of both manuscripts are in OCMH. Individual special studies consulted are Roy E. Appleman, Army Tanks in the Battle for Saipan, MS in OCMH; 1st Lt. Russell A. Gugeler, FA, Army Amphibian Tractor and Tank Battalions in the Battle of Saipan, 15 June-9 July 1944, MS in OCMH; Lt. Grace P. Hayes, USN, The War Against Japan, MS in JCS Historical Section; Lt. (j.g.) A. O. Van Wyen and Lt. (j.g.) W. G. Land, Office DCNO, Naval Air Operations in the Marianas, 11-20 June 1944, Copy of MS in Records and Research Section, Historical Branch G-3, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps.
The major collection of captured Japanese military records, amounting to about 7,000 linear feet, was returned to Japan in 1958. Before they were returned these records were in the custody of the National Archives and Records Service, Washington, D.C. Except for a small group of selected operational records reproduced by the Navy Department, there are no substantial collections of Japanese military records now remaining in the United States.
After the war the G-2 Section of General Headquarters, Far East Command (GHQ, FEC), directed a group of former Japanese Army and Navy officers to prepare a series of special studies of Japanese operations, based on their personal recollections and on available official records in Tokyo. These were translated, edited, and incorporated into a formal numbered series of Japanese Studies now on file in the Office, Chief of Military History. Those used in the preparation of this volume are Study Number 55 (Operations in the Central Pacific) and Study Number 75 (History of the Army Section, Imperial General Headquarters, 1941-1945).
A large collection of translated captured enemy records is contained in the bulletins and translations prepared during the war by Headquarters, Commander in Chief Pacific Fleet and Pacific Ocean Areas, and by the Joint Intelligence Center, Pacific Ocean Areas (JICPOA). Complete collections of both are deposited in the Classified Operational Records Branch, World War II, Office of Naval History, and the Records and Research Section, Historical Branch, G-3, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps. The 4th Marine Division also collected a series of "representative translations made on Tinian," which is deposited in the same place. Of particular use in understanding and evaluating Japanese defensive operations on Guam were two letters from Lt. Col. Hideyuki Takeda, IJA, one addressed to the Commandant, U.S. Marine Corps, dated 4 October 1946, and the other to Brig. Gen. J. C. McQueen, USMC, dated 20 February 1952. Both are also to be found in the Records and Research Section, Historical Branch, G-3 Division, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps.
Appleman, Roy E., James M. Burns, Russell A. Gugeler, and John Stevens. Okinawa: The Last Battle. UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II. Washington, 1948.
Arnold, H. H., General of the Air Force. Global Mission. New York; Harper & Brothers, 1949.
Bartley, Lt. Col. Whitman S., USMC. Iwo Jima; Amphibious Epic. Historical Branch, G-3 Division, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps. Washington, 1954.
Butow, Robert J., Japan's Decision to Surrender. Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 1954.
Cass, Bevan G. (ed.). History of the Sixth Marine Division. Washington, 1948.
Craven, Wesley Frank, and James Lea Cate (eds.). The Army Air Forces in World War II, Vol. IV, The Pacific: Guadalcanal to Saipan, August 1942 to July 1944. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1950.
---- Ibid., Vol. V, The Pacific: Matterhorn to Nagasaki, June 1944 to August 1945. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1953.
Crowl, Philip A., and Edmund G. Love. Seizure of the Gilberts and Marshalls. UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II. Washington, 1955.
Department of the Navy, Bureau of Yards and Docks. Building the Navy's Bases in World War II; History of the Bureau of Yards and Docks and the Civil Engineer Corps, 1940-1946. 2 vols. Washington, 1947.
Halsey, Fleet Admiral William F., USN, and Lieutenant Commander J. Bryan, III, USNR. Admiral Halsey's Story. New York and London: Whittlesey House, McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., 1947.
Heinl, Lt. Col. Robert D., Jr., USMC, and Lt. Col. John A. Crown, USMC. The Marshalls: Increasing the Tempo. Historical Branch, G-3 Division, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps. Washington, 1954.
Historical Division, War Department. The Capture of Makin, 20 November-24 November 1943. AMERICAN FORCES IN ACTION SERIES. Washington, 1946.
------ Guam: Operations of the 77th Division (21 July-10 August 1944). AMERICAN FORCES IN ACTION SERIES. Washington, 1946.
------ Small Unit Actions. AMERICAN FORCES IN ACTION SERIES. Washington, 1946.
Hoffman, Major Carl W., USMC. Saipan: The Beginning of the End. Historical Division, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps. Washington, 1950.
------ The Seizure of Tinian. Historical Division, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps. Washington, 1951.
Isely, Jeter A. and Philip A. Crowl. The U.S. Marines and Amphibious War. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1951.
Jane's Fighting Ships, 1944-45. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1947.
Johnston, Richard W. Follow Me!: The Story of the Second Marine Division in World War II. New York: Random House, 1948.
Joint Army-Navy Assessment Committee. Japanese Naval and Merchant Shipping Losses During World War II By All Causes. Washington, 1947.
Kenney, George C. General Kenney Reports, A Personal History of the Pacific War. New York: Duell, Sloan and Pearce, 1949.
King, Fleet Admiral Ernest J. and Walter M. Whitehill. Fleet Admiral King, A Naval Record. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1952.
Lodge, Major O. R., USMC. The Recapture of Guam. Historical Branch, G-3 Division, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps. Washington, 1954.
Love, Edmund G. The 27th Infantry Division in World War II. Washington: Infantry Journal Press, 1949.
Miller, John, jr. CARTWHEEL: The Reduction of Rabaul. UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II. Washington, 1959.
------ Guadalcanal: The First Offensive. UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II. Washington, 1949.
Milner, Samuel. Victory in Papua. UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II. Washington, 1957.
Morison, Samuel Eliot. History of United States Naval Operations in World War II, Vol. III, The Rising Sun in the Pacific, 1931-April 1942. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1948.
------ Ibid., Vol. IV, Coral Sea, Midway and Submarine Actions, May 1942 - August 1942. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1949.
------ Ibid., Vol. V, The Struggle for Guadalcanal, August 1942-February 1943. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1949.
------ Ibid., Vol. VII, Aleutians, Gilberts and Marshalls, June 1942-April 1944. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1951.
------ Ibid., Vol. VIII, New Guinea and the Marianas, March 1944-August
1944. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1953.
Myers, Denys P. Handbook of the League of Nations. Boston and New York: World Peace Foundation, 1935.
Office, Chief of Naval Operations, Division of Naval Intelligence. ONI 29, Palau, Mariana Islands. Washington, 11 May 1942.
------ ONI 99, Strategic Study of Guam. Washington, 1 February 1944.
Ours To Hold It High: The History of the 77th Infantry Division in World War II By Men Who Were There. Washington: Infantry Journal Press, 1947.
Pomeroy, Earl S. Pacific Outpost: American Strategy in Guam and Micronesia. Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 1951.
Proehl, Carl W. (ed.). The Fourth Marine Division in World War II. Washington, 1946.
Robson, R. W. (comp.). The Pacific Islands Year Book, 1942. Sydney, Australia: Pacific Publications, Limited, 1942.
------ The Pacific Islands Handbook,1944. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1946.
Romanus, Charles F., and Riley Sunderland. Stilwell's Mission to China. UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II. Washington, 1953.
Sherrod, Robert. On to Westward! War in the Central Pacific. New York: Duell, Sloan and Pearce, Inc., 1945.
Smith, Holland M. Coral and Brass. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1949.
Smith, Robert Ross. The Approach to the Philippines. UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II. Washington, 1953.
Sprout, Harold and Margaret. Toward a New Order of Sea Power. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1940.
Stockman, Captain James R., USMC. The Battle for Tarawa. Historical Division, Division of Public Information, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps. Washington, 1947.
Thompson, Laura. Guam and Its People. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1947.
United States Strategic Bombing Survey, Chairman's Office. Japan's Struggle to End the War. Washington, 1946.
------ (Pacific), Naval Analysis Division. The Campaigns of the Pacific War. Washington, 1946.
------ (Pacific), Naval Analysis Division. Interrogations of Japanese Officials. 2 vols. Washington, 1946.
------ (Pacific ), Naval Analysis Division. The Reduction of Truk. Washington, 1947.
The War Reports of General of the Army George C. Marshall, Chief of Staff, General of the Army H. H. Arnold, Commanding General, Army Air Forces, Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King, Commander-in-Chief, United States Fleet and Chief of Naval Operations. Philadelphia and New York: J. B. Lippincott Company, 1947.NOTE: Separate volumes of General Marshall's and Admiral King's reports (with different page numbers, of course) are available online:
Biennial Reports of the Chief of Staff of the United States Army to the Secretary of War, 1 July 1939-30 June 1945
U.S. Navy at War 1941-1945: Official Reports to the Secretary of the Navy by Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King, U.S. Navy
Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King, Commander-in-Chief, United States Fleet and Chief of Naval Operations. Philadelphia and New York: J. B. Lippincott Company, 1947.
Zimmerman, Maj. John L., USMCR. The Guadalcanal Campaign. Historical Division, Division of Public Information, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps. Washington, 1949.
1. Army and Navy nomenclature differs here. The same type of report that is called "after action report" by the Army is called "action report" by the Navy. The U.S. Marine Corps usually employs the Navy term. Other variations used occasionally are "special action report," "operations report," and "participation report."
2. Ranks are those held as of the time of completion of this volume.