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    Talasea West New Britain Province Papua New Guinea (PNG)

Location
Lat 5° 16' 60S Long 150° 1' 60E  Talasea village is located on the Willaumez Peninsula on the northern coast of New Britain. To the east is Garua Harbor and offshore is Garua Island. To the northwest is Bitokara and Mount Schleuther.

Prewar
The Australian Administration Government Station was established at Talasea to manage the area, including Talasea Airfield (Old Talasea Strip).

Wartime History
Occupied by the Japanese. During 1944, the Japanese Army 1st Battalion, 54th Infantry commanded by Captain Kiyomatsu Terunuma prepared the defenses at Talasea after the Marines landed at Cape Gloucester. After their defeat in the west, Japanese stragglers while retreating eastward towards Rabaul.

American missions against Talasea
March 6, 1943 - March 26, 1944

On March 6, 1944 after the United States Marines Corps (USMC) landed at Volupai (Red Beach) and captured the area by March 10, facing almost negligible enemy opposition. During the operation, the Marines suffered more casualties tree falls than to enemy action. Afterwards, Talasea became an administrative base for the Americans for a short period. During early March 1944, 1st Marines established a headquarters at this location and built training sites, a hospital (using captured Japanese medical supplies) and rest area with a swimming area in Garua Harbor.

Talasea Airfield (Old Talasea Strip)
Prewar airfield occupied by Americans in early March 1944 used to a limited capacity.

Talasea PT-Boat Base
The U. S. Navy built a base at Talasea for PT Boats. Two days after operations, the base was accidentally bombed by friendly planes on March 27, 1944 killing 5 and wounded 18.

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Last Updated
February 4, 2018

 

Map
Map USMC
March 6-11, 1944

Map
Map 1944

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