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    Pagan Island Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands USA
Location
Lat 18.10°N Long 145.76°E. Pagan Island is located in the Northern Islands Municipality at the northern end of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) in the Mariana Island Group (Mariana Islands) in the United States of America (USA). To the north is Agrihan Island (Agrigan). To the south is Alamagan Island and Guguan Island.

Prewar
Pagan was first claimed by Spain then became a German colony. After World War I, the island went to the Japanese by League of Nations mandate. Developed into a Japanese base.

Wartime History
During the Pacific War, the Japanese constructed Pagan Airfield and had a seaplane base off the island. During the middle of 1944 until the middle of 1945 attacked by American aircraft searching for a radio site that reportedly exisited on the island and was reporting on B-29 flights in the area, giving the home islands warning about incoming air raids. No radio station was found.

At the very end of the war, it was attacked by US forces looking for a radio site reportedly reporting B-29 flights. None were found, but there was one accidental US casualty on the island.

On September 2, 1945 USS Rhind DD-404 arrives at the island with Commodore Vernon F. Grant who accepts the surrender of the Japanese garrison on Pagan.

American missions against Pagan
June 23, 1944 - July 24, 1945

Today
After World War II, Pagan remained part of the UN Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands until granted U.S. Commonwealth status. Today it is part of the Northern Islands Municipality. A 1981 volcano eruption caused the evacuation of all inhabitants. The last U.S. census of 2000 listed no residents.

Pagan Airfield
Japanese built airfield, still in use today for light aircraft.

F6F Hellcat Bureau Number 42135
Pilot Bechtol crashed June 23, 1944 (MIA)

F6F Hellcat Bureau Number 42117
Pilot Stream crashed June 23, 1944 pilot rescued

References
Pagan Island (Japanese)

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Last Updated
August 25, 2018

 

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