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    Cape Esperance Guadalcanal Province Solomon Islands
Lat 9° 16' 0S Long 159° 41' 60E  Cape Esperance is located on the northwest coast of Guadalcanal. Borders Iron Bottom Sound and Savo Island to the north. Also known as "Mount Esperence".

Wartime History
During 1942, used by the Japanese as a landing area for troops and supplies during the Guadalcanal campaign.

Battle of Cape Esperance (Second Battle of Savo Island)
During the night of October 11-12, 1942 the battle was the third of five major naval engagements during the Guadalcanal campaign and took place at the entrance to the strait between Savo and Cape Esperence on Guadalcanal. Known to the Japanese as "Sea Battle of Savo Island". Lost were heavy cruiser Furutaka and destroyer Fubuki.

Japanese Evacuation
After a meeting in Tokyo on December 31, 1942, Japanese Imperial HQ issued an order on January 4, 1943 authorizing "Operation Ke" to evacuate of the remaining Japanese forces on Guadalcanal. During the nights of February 1, 1943, February 4, 1943 and February 7, 1943 a total of 22 destroyers conducted the withdrawal from several locations around Cape Esperence, evacuating 12,198 Army and 832 Navy personnel and ending the six-month Guadalcanal campaign. The American who had local air supremacy never detected the withdrawal. The evacuated Japanese were starving and had to abandon all their equipment to wade out to the destroyers to be rescued. Regardless, "Operation Ke" is regarded as one of the great evacuations of the war as the Japanese Navy avoided detection and suffered only the loss of Makigumo and three damaged destroyers.

Ewan Stevenson adds:
"The Americans did a good job of 'cleaning up' the area. All Japanese equipment was taken back to 'island depot'. I never saw where the Japanese camps were along the coast. They were not easily identified."

Coastal village on Cape Esperance and Visale Catholic Mission

Prewar Visale Catholic Mission bordering Visale Bay

Coastal village on Cape Esperence.

Chapuru (Tsapuru, Sapuru)
Coastal village on Cape Esperence

USS Jarvis (DD-393)
Sunk August 9, 1942 off Cape Esperence by D3A Val dive bombers

Furutaka 古鷹
Sunk October 11, 1942 Battle of Cape Esperance

Fubuki 吹雪
Sunk October 11, 1942 Battle of Cape Esperance

B-24D "Alley Cat" Serial Number 42-40646
Pilot Prince crashed July 10, 1943 into a ravine at 1,500' remains recovered

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Last Updated
December 3, 2018


Aug 7, 1942
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