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    Corregidor Island (Fort Mills, The Rock) Cavite Province Philippines
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IJA May 5, 1942

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USAAF 1945

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USAAF Feb 15, 1945

Corregidor Island is located at the entrance to Manila Bay. To the west is the South China Sea. To the north is North Channel and the Bataan Peninsula. To the south is the south channel and Cavite. To the southeast is Caballo Island (Fort Hughes) and El Fraile (Fort Drum). Also know as "The Rock" or "Fort Mills".

Corregidor Island was developed by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers into Fort Mills as part of the Manila Bay defenses with gun batteries, mortars, anti-aircraft guns, tunnels and airfield.

World War II History
On December 21, 1941 Corregidor became the headquarters for U. S. Naval Defense forces. After the Japanese Army occupied Bataan and Cavite, their artillery began bombarding Corregidor while Japanese aircraft bombed and strafed to soften up the defenses.

Japanese missions against Corregidor
January 4 - May 6, 1942

By order of President Roosevelt, U. S. Army General MacArthur and his family plus other senior staff members were evacuated from Corregidor PT-32, PT-34, PT-35 and PT-41 during the night of March 11-12, 1942 and transported to Mindanao where they were flown aboard B-17s to Darwin, Australia

On May 5, 1942 a force of 2.000 Japanese Army troops under the command of General Homma launched an amphibious assault on Corregidor supported by a heavy bombardment from artillery and aircraft. Despite determined American resistance, Corregidor was officially surrendered on May 6, 1942.

During the Japanese occupation of Corregidor, only one Japanese Army reinforced company of approximately 300 men defended the island. The Japanese used approximately 500 Prisoners Of War (POW) to repair installations, perform cleanup and collect scrap for shipment to Japan. The prisoners remained on the island until shortly before the 1945 liberation. As American forces approached, approximately 6,000 Japanese mostly Navy troops occupied the island. During 1945, extensive American bombing missions, U. S. Navy (USN) bombardment and mine clearing operation proceeded the liberation of Corregidor.

American missions against Corregidor
January 23 - March 1, 1945

On February 15, 1945 C-47 Dakotas dropped paratroopers from the U. S. Army 503rd Parachute Regiment at the center of Corregidor at Topside. Meanwhile, an amphibious landing was made by the U. S. Army 34th Infantry Division between Cavalry Point and Infantry Point on the north coast, and another landing was made west of San Jose on the southern coast to capture Malinta Hill.

The Japanese defended from caves, and launched banzai charges. On February 21, 1945 they set off demolition charges blowing up Malinta Hill. On February 25, the 151st Infantry arrived to replace the 34th Infantry Division. In total, the battle to liberate Corregidor lasted twelve days, and resulted in 225 KIA and MIA plus 645 WIA on the American side.  Nearly all the Japanese defenders were killed, totaling 4,500 killed with an estimated 500 buried alive in caves, plus 200 killed trying to swim away. Only 20 prisoners were captured.

Click For EnlargementCorregidor is a protected Philippines National Park, A small population lives on the island, to maintain the grounds and guide tourists. Most people choose the short day trip by fast catamaran from Manila, which includes a guided bus tour around some of the more significant sites. For the more serious visitor, there is a nice hotel, and our stays have been up to ten days, much to the amazement of the locals.

Click For DetailsBattery Way
A battery of four mortars, capable of firing in any direction. The last of the four mortars was still firing when the Japanese landed, and Allied forces removed its breech block prior to capture.
Today, it is one of the main tourist attractions on Corregidor Island tour.

Click For DetailsBattery Grubbs
Located in the west central inland part of the Corregidor. The battery faces a northwesterly direction, primarily to cover the approached to the North Channel, but was capable of covering the entire channel.

Click For EnlargementBattery Geary
A mortar battery built into a hollow on the southern coast of Corregidor. Hit by a a 240mm round penetrated the center magazine, detonating a massive explosion of 40 tons of explosives that utterly destroyed the battery, leaving a large crater where the magazine formerly was located.

Click For DetailsBattery Crockett
A battery of four mortars, capable of firing in any direction. The last of the four mortars was still firing when the Japanese landed, and Allied forces removed its breech block prior to capture.

Battery Smith
Click For DetailsBattery Smith was a long range (26 miles) flat trajectory 12" gun. There were two of these weapons curiously exposed like this, the other being Battery Hearn. Perhaps they didn't build a parapet so as to allow depression of the guns bordering the South China Sea. Each could traverse a full 360 degrees.

Click For DetailsBattery Hearn
Battery Hearn was a long range (26 miles) flat trajectory 12" gun bordering the South China Sea. During the defense of Corregidor by the Americans, this gun was used to fire at Japanese forces on Bataan, but only AP shells were available causing limited damage.

Click For DetailsBattery Ramsay
Located near the the old YMCA building. This battery of three six-inches received a hit on its magazine during allied air bombardments and there is an enormous crater and one of the huge gun mounts lies on its side at the rim.

Battery Wheeler
The battery faces towards the southwest, but could easily lay fire upon Mariveles to the northwest. Battery Wheeler was constructed between 1904 and 1919.

Battery Cheney
Located on the southwestern corner of the island bordering the South China Sea. This battery had two 12" guns on M1901 disappearing gun carriages

Japanese Tunnel
Carved by the Japanese, along the tracks at Battery Rock Point and Middle side.

Click For EnlargementMile Long Barracks
Nicknamed 'Mile Long Barracks' it was said to be the longest barracks in the world (although not actually a mile long). Heavily damaged during the capture and liberation of the island, the ruins are still standing today.

Click For EnlargementThe original flagpole. After liberator, on March 2 1945. General Douglas MacArthur awarded Colonel George M. Jones, the paratrooper commander a DSC and made the famous quote: "I see the old flagpole still stands. Have your troops hoist the colors to its peak, and let no enemy ever haul them down."

Topside Barracks (Topside)
Prewar barracks building.

Malinta Tunnel (Malinta Hill)
Located roughly in the center of the island. This massive underground headquarters and supplies storage area for the USAFFE.

Kindley Field (Landing Strip, Corregidor Airport)
Runway on the eastern end of Corregidor.

Battery Kysor
Located on the north side of the island, to the west of Kindley Field

Filipino Women Statue
To the SW of Battery Kysor.

Medical Marker / General Wainwright Memorial
Located on the south coast of the island, near the south dock.

South Dock
Landing point on the south side of the island, roughly in the center.

Battery Maxwell Keyes
Located to the SW of Kindley Field, on the south side of the island.

Naval Radio Intercept Tunnel
Located to the east of Battery Maxwell Keyes.

Filipino Heroes Memorial / President Osmena Statue
Located to the SE of Battery Kysor.

Click For EnlargementLighthouse
Located on the island.

References  information and historic resources
The 25 Best World War II Sites Pacific Theater pages 10-17

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Last Updated
October 23, 2019


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