Kiska Island is located in the Rat Island Group (Rat Islands) in the Aleutian Island Chain (Aleutian Islands) in Alaska in the United States. To the west is Attu Island. Borders Kiska Harbor and to the east is Little Kiska Island.
The U. S. Navy (USN) established Kiska Station (Kiska weather station), a weather station with ten men led by a Lieutenant and their pet dog.
On June 6, 1942 a force of five hundered No. 3 Special Naval Landing Force (SNLF) landed on Kiska. TThey attacked the USN weather detachment
killing two and capturing the others who were sent to Japan as Prisoners Of War (POW).
One escaped and was able to evade capture for fifty days until he surrendered to the Japanese starving and thin from exposure.
During the Japanese occupation, the Japanese Navy developed the area around Kiska Harbor, known as "Main Camp". They established Kiska Harbor Seaplane Base at Main Camp with a seaplane operating area in Kiska Harbor. A submarine base was established with a ramp and pens for several mini submarines. Anti-aircraft guns defended the installation.
On August 27, 1943 the Japanese begin to transfer their garrison from Attu to Kiska,
an operation completed by which is completed by September 16, 1943. On July 23, 1943 the entire Japanese
garrison of 5,183 troops and civilians was evacuated from Kiska by the Japanese Navy under the cover of fog. Despite massive American air and naval power in the vicinity, the evacuation
force was not detected.
June 8, 1942 - August 17, 1943
Unaware the Japanese had withdrawn, the Allies landed on Kiska on August 15, 1943. Although there were no Japanese on the island, there were 17 fatalities and roughly 200 casualties from accidents, friendly fire and enemy booby traps. An additional 130 men suffered cases of trench foot.
Kiska is considered a National Historic Landmark (the
highest level of recognition accorded to historic sites in the US,
and is protected). Around the harbor, is one of the best preserved
historical scenes anywhere. The slow erosion processes on the tundra
have had little effect on the bomb craters still visible on the
hills surrounding the harbor.
Dumps of US and Japanese material are numerous. Right-hand drive
Japanese truck frames are piled up, along with zero engines and
other evidence of Japanese occupation. Extensive support structures
are in place, such as a water hydrant. Evidence of US troop occupation
remains in both standing structures and collapsed ones. US; dump
sites containing numerous 3-inch shells, debris and aircraft
Some of the most dramatic remains are the numerous tunnels from
the extensive Japanese underground system, some concrete reinforced.
Many are still sound and contain Japanese material.
Located off Kiska on September 16, 1942 Nozama Maru was beached at this location.
Located on the southern coast of Kiska, Borneo Maru was abandoned at this location November 1942.
Located on the northwest coast of the island. On August 15, 1943 the 1st Special Service Force landed at Quisling Cove onto Lilly Beach (Beach 9-Blue). The main landing by the 1st Battalion, 87th Mountain Infantry Regiment, and with the 13th Canadian Infantry Brigade Group.
Located on the eastern edge of Kiska. Japanese submarine and seaplane base
Kiska Harbor Seaplane Base
Located at Kiska Harbor
Kiska Harbor Submarine Base
Located at Kiska Harbor
Japanese construction, never completed
Area on eastern Kiska bordering Kiska Harbor. Japanese forces established their main base area.
Feature that borders Kiska Harbor and Main Camp to the south, North Pass to the east and Salmon Lagoon to the north.
Feature that borders Kiska Harbor
140mm Naval Gun Type III
Japanese gun emplacement on the southern coast
Twin 25mm Anti-Aircraft Gun
Japanese gun at the edge of Kiska Volcano.
After the battle, Canadian forces built a monument to their dead to friendly fire from Japanese 13.2mm shell cases. A few years later, the memorial was damaged.
Type 95 Ha Go
Captured during the battle, transported to United States for evaluation
Lat 52.1° N Long 177.6° E Kiska volcano is located on the northern tip of Kiska Island, the peak has an elevation of 4,000'. The last eruption was 1989.
PBY-5A Catalina Bureau
Pilot Davis crashed June 14, 1942
B-24D Liberator 41-1088
Pilot Todd shot down by anti-aircraft fire on June 11, 1942
B-24D Liberator 41-23970
Gilliland MIA April 15, 1943
USS Grunnion SS-216
Likely sunk July 31, 1942 10 miles north-east of Kiska, reportedly located August 2006
P-40K piloted by Levi
Shot down by anti-aircraft fire July 24, 1943 pilot's body buried by the Japanese
Sunk October 17, 1942 by B-26 roughly 30 miles northeast of Kiska Island
B-26 Marauder 40-1478
Pilot Pebworth shot down October 16, 1942 north of Kiska attacking destroyers Oboro and Hatsuharu
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October 23, 2019