February 21, 1943
Google Earth 2008
9° 4' 0S Long 159° 11' 60E Part of the Russell Island
Group, large island to the west of Banika. Pavuvu is roughly eight miles across, east to west and nine miles across north to south.
Peninsula and point located on the northern side of the island. To the north is Baisen Island.
On February 21, 1943 as part of "Operation Cleanslate", the USMC 3rd Marine Raider Battalion landed at "Red Beach" along Patty Bay on the eastern side of the Pepasala Peninsula and occupied the area, then proceeded to Baisen Island to the north. They depart on March 19 and return to Lunga Point on Guadalcanal.
1st Marine Division Camp Area
Prewar, this area was a Levers Brothers coconut palm plantation for copra. The 1st Marine Division established their camp area to the west of Pepasala Point, on the next peninsula over. Prewar, this area was a coconut palm plantation. Developed into a camp area, Amtrack and vehicle park and tent city. Marines recuperated on Pavuvu after Cape Glouchester (December 25, 1943 - early 1944) and after Peleliu (October 1944). Also used as a staging area for the invasion of Okinawa. After the war, the Americans left the area, and little trace of the camp remains and it has been replanted with palms.
Pier area on the eastern side of the peninsula. Connected by the shore road to the camp area. During late July 1944, the pier was damaged, and immediately repaired during the Division's pre-Peleliu maneuvers. An open, crushed coral area next to the pier was a parade ground where they did award ceremonies and training. On August 7, 1944 Bob Hope's USO show performed on a stage at this location to entertain the Marines. Other performers included Jerry Colonna, Patty Thomas and Francis Langford. Today, the pier portion is removed or otherwise missing.
Pavuvu Airfield (Cub Strip)
Portion of the shore road
Thanks to Herbert Caloud for additional information
Do you have photos or additional information to add?
May 3, 2016
February 21, 1943