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On this day …….. 31st of July 1942

In WWII, the first real attack of the Japanese on an Australian base occurred with the bombing of Darwin on 19 February 1942. That attack was the first of about 90 attacks that occurred at various places in and around Australia during the war. Shortly after this initial attack, the northwest coastal towns of Broome and Wyndham also came under fire, followed by Derby a few weeks later. It is less well known that the town of Mossman, near Cairns, was also bombed. On the night of 31 July 1942, Sub Lieutenant Mizukura dropped eight bombs, thinking that the lights he saw were Cairns. In fact it was Mossman, and while the other seven bombs have never been recovered, one fell on a sugar cane farm near Saltwater, Mossman. It caused a crater that measured 7 metres wide and a metre deep, and sent flying shrapnel through the window of the nearby farmhouse. Farmer Felice Zullo’s two and a half year old daughter was wounded in the head from shrapnel which entered the house, although she was in her cot at the time.

The child grew up to become Mrs Carmel Emmi, and on 31 July 1991, Mrs Emmi unveiled a plaque on a memorial stone commemorating the attack and her survival. The memorial stone is situated on Bamboo Creek Road, after the turnoff to Whyanbeel.

 

On this day …….. 6th of July 1943

Darwin, capital city of Australia’s Northern Territory, was just a small town with a civilian population of less than 2000 during World War II. Nonetheless, it was a strategically-placed naval port and airbase. The first of an estimated 64 air raids against Darwin during 1942-43 occurred on 19 February 1942. At least 243 civilians and military personnel were killed, not counting the indigenous Australians whose deaths were not counted, as the Japanese launched two waves of planes comprising 242 bombers and fighters. Following the February raid, other parts of Australia including Darwin, northwest Western Australia and even regions of far north Queensland were subject to over one hundred more raids. Airport base areas attacked included Townsville, Katherine, Wyndham, Derby and Port Hedland, while Milingimbi, Exmouth Gulf and Horn Island were also targetted. 63 more Japanese raids occurred against Darwin and its immediate surroundings, some of them heavier than others. On 6 July 1943, the last of the heavy air attacks against Darwin occurred. The attack was directed against the US Liberator base at Fenton, located about 150 kilometres south of Darwin. Three pilots were killed, while three bombers damaged and eight Spitfires and a Liberator were destroyed. Three more minor attacks were carried out in August. The final attack on Australian soil occurred on 12 November 1943. There was only minor damage around the town of Darwin, and no casualties.

 

On This Day ……. 31st May 1942

When the town of Darwin was bombed by the Japanese in World War II, Australians were forced to accept the reality of how close the war was. Further bombing raids continued along Australia’s northwestern coastline, and even Townsville and Mossman in far north Queensland, but the war was truly brought home to Australians living along the more populated east coast on the day that three Japanese submarines entered Sydney Harbour. On the afternoon of 31 May 1942, three Japanese submarines sat approximately thirteen kilometres out from Sydney Harbour. Each launched a midget submarine, hoping to sink an American heavy cruiser, the USS Chicago, which was anchored in the harbour. One midget was detected by harbour defences at about 8:00pm, but was not precisely located until it became entangled in the net; the two-man crew of the submarine blew up their own vessel to avoid capture. When the second midget was detected after 10:00pm, a general alarm was sounded. The third midget was damaged by depth charges, and the crew also committed suicide to avoid capture. When the second midget was detected after 11:00pm and fired upon, the submarine returned fire, hitting the naval depot ship HMAS Kuttabul, a converted harbour ferry, which served as an accommodation vessel. Nineteen Australian and two British sailors on the Kuttabul died, the only Allied deaths resulting from the attack, and survivors were pulled from the sinking vessel. The submarine presumably returned to its mother ship, known as I-24. Nine days later, on 8 June 1942, I-24 surfaced off Sydney, about 10 km off Maroubra. For four minutes, the submarine’s deck gun was fired at the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Every shot landed well short of its target, with at least 10 shells hitting the residential suburbs of Rose Bay, Woollahra and Bellevue Hill. All but one of the shells failed to explode and there were no fatalities or serious injuries.

On this day …….. 2nd September 1945

Japan, a major antagonist in WWII, had suffered catastrophic losses following the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and conventional attacks upon other major cities, such as the firebombing of Tokyo. The Soviet invasion of Manchuria debilitated the only significant forces the Japanese still had left. The USA had captured the islands of Iwo Jima and Okinawa, bringing the Japanese homeland within range of naval and air attack. Hundreds of thousands of people had been killed, and millions more were casualties or refugees of war. Japan surrendered on 14 August 1945, on the day known as Victory in the Pacific Day in Australia, and Victory over Japan Day elsewhere. The official surrender papers were signed on 2 September 1945, aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay, in the presence of 50 Allied generals and other officials.

 

On this day …….. 31st of July 1942

In WWII, the first real attack of the Japanese on an Australian base occurred with the bombing of Darwin on 19 February 1942. That attack was the first of about 90 attacks that occurred at various places in and around Australia during the war. Shortly after this initial attack, the northwest coastal towns of Broome and Wyndham also came under fire, followed by Derby a few weeks later. It is less well known that the town of Mossman, near Cairns, was also bombed. On the night of 31 July 1942, Sub Lieutenant Mizukura dropped eight bombs, thinking that the lights he saw were Cairns. In fact it was Mossman, and while the other seven bombs have never been recovered, one fell on a sugar cane farm near Saltwater, Mossman. It caused a crater that measured 7 metres wide and a metre deep, and sent flying shrapnel through the window of the nearby farmhouse. Farmer Felice Zullo’s two and a half year old daughter was wounded in the head from shrapnel which entered the house, although she was in her cot at the time.

The child grew up to become Mrs Carmel Emmi, and on 31 July 1991, Mrs Emmi unveiled a plaque on a memorial stone commemorating the attack and her survival. The memorial stone is situated on Bamboo Creek Road, after the turnoff to Whyanbeel.

 

On this day …….. 6th of July 1943

Darwin, capital city of Australia’s Northern Territory, was just a small town with a civilian population of less than 2000 during World War II. Nonetheless, it was a strategically-placed naval port and airbase. The first of an estimated 64 air raids against Darwin during 1942-43 occurred on 19 February 1942. At least 243 civilians and military personnel were killed, not counting the indigenous Australians whose deaths were not counted, as the Japanese launched two waves of planes comprising 242 bombers and fighters. Following the February raid, other parts of Australia including Darwin, northwest Western Australia and even regions of far north Queensland were subject to over one hundred more raids. Airport base areas attacked included Townsville, Katherine, Wyndham, Derby and Port Hedland, while Milingimbi, Exmouth Gulf and Horn Island were also targetted. 63 more Japanese raids occurred against Darwin and its immediate surroundings, some of them heavier than others. On 6 July 1943, the last of the heavy air attacks against Darwin occurred. The attack was directed against the US Liberator base at Fenton, located about 150 kilometres south of Darwin. Three pilots were killed, while three bombers damaged and eight Spitfires and a Liberator were destroyed. Three more minor attacks were carried out in August. The final attack on Australian soil occurred on 12 November 1943. There was only minor damage around the town of Darwin, and no casualties.

 

On This Day ……. 31st May 1942

When the town of Darwin was bombed by the Japanese in World War II, Australians were forced to accept the reality of how close the war was. Further bombing raids continued along Australia’s northwestern coastline, and even Townsville and Mossman in far north Queensland, but the war was truly brought home to Australians living along the more populated east coast on the day that three Japanese submarines entered Sydney Harbour. On the afternoon of 31 May 1942, three Japanese submarines sat approximately thirteen kilometres out from Sydney Harbour. Each launched a midget submarine, hoping to sink an American heavy cruiser, the USS Chicago, which was anchored in the harbour. One midget was detected by harbour defences at about 8:00pm, but was not precisely located until it became entangled in the net; the two-man crew of the submarine blew up their own vessel to avoid capture. When the second midget was detected after 10:00pm, a general alarm was sounded. The third midget was damaged by depth charges, and the crew also committed suicide to avoid capture. When the second midget was detected after 11:00pm and fired upon, the submarine returned fire, hitting the naval depot ship HMAS Kuttabul, a converted harbour ferry, which served as an accommodation vessel. Nineteen Australian and two British sailors on the Kuttabul died, the only Allied deaths resulting from the attack, and survivors were pulled from the sinking vessel. The submarine presumably returned to its mother ship, known as I-24. Nine days later, on 8 June 1942, I-24 surfaced off Sydney, about 10 km off Maroubra. For four minutes, the submarine’s deck gun was fired at the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Every shot landed well short of its target, with at least 10 shells hitting the residential suburbs of Rose Bay, Woollahra and Bellevue Hill. All but one of the shells failed to explode and there were no fatalities or serious injuries.

On this day ………… 18th February 1940

At Darwin, Northern Territory, a pet kangaroo assaulted an aged Japanese man on this day in 1940. Invading his shop, the animal ripped the back of the proprietor and when he turned round it inflicted long, deep cuts on his face.

 

 

On this day …….. 2nd September 1945

Japan, a major antagonist in WWII, had suffered catastrophic losses following the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and conventional attacks upon other major cities, such as the firebombing of Tokyo. The Soviet invasion of Manchuria debilitated the only significant forces the Japanese still had left. The USA had captured the islands of Iwo Jima and Okinawa, bringing the Japanese homeland within range of naval and air attack. Hundreds of thousands of people had been killed, and millions more were casualties or refugees of war. Japan surrendered on 14 August 1945, on the day known as Victory in the Pacific Day in Australia, and Victory over Japan Day elsewhere. The official surrender papers were signed on 2 September 1945, aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay, in the presence of 50 Allied generals and other officials.

 

On this day …….. 31st of July 1942

In WWII, the first real attack of the Japanese on an Australian base occurred with the bombing of Darwin on 19 February 1942. That attack was the first of about 90 attacks that occurred at various places in and around Australia during the war. Shortly after this initial attack, the northwest coastal towns of Broome and Wyndham also came under fire, followed by Derby a few weeks later. It is less well known that the town of Mossman, near Cairns, was also bombed. On the night of 31 July 1942, Sub Lieutenant Mizukura dropped eight bombs, thinking that the lights he saw were Cairns. In fact it was Mossman, and while the other seven bombs have never been recovered, one fell on a sugar cane farm near Saltwater, Mossman. It caused a crater that measured 7 metres wide and a metre deep, and sent flying shrapnel through the window of the nearby farmhouse. Farmer Felice Zullo’s two and a half year old daughter was wounded in the head from shrapnel which entered the house, although she was in her cot at the time.

The child grew up to become Mrs Carmel Emmi, and on 31 July 1991, Mrs Emmi unveiled a plaque on a memorial stone commemorating the attack and her survival. The memorial stone is situated on Bamboo Creek Road, after the turnoff to Whyanbeel.

 

On this day …….. 6th of July 1943

Darwin, capital city of Australia’s Northern Territory, was just a small town with a civilian population of less than 2000 during World War II. Nonetheless, it was a strategically-placed naval port and airbase. The first of an estimated 64 air raids against Darwin during 1942-43 occurred on 19 February 1942. At least 243 civilians and military personnel were killed, not counting the indigenous Australians whose deaths were not counted, as the Japanese launched two waves of planes comprising 242 bombers and fighters. Following the February raid, other parts of Australia including Darwin, northwest Western Australia and even regions of far north Queensland were subject to over one hundred more raids. Airport base areas attacked included Townsville, Katherine, Wyndham, Derby and Port Hedland, while Milingimbi, Exmouth Gulf and Horn Island were also targetted. 63 more Japanese raids occurred against Darwin and its immediate surroundings, some of them heavier than others. On 6 July 1943, the last of the heavy air attacks against Darwin occurred. The attack was directed against the US Liberator base at Fenton, located about 150 kilometres south of Darwin. Three pilots were killed, while three bombers damaged and eight Spitfires and a Liberator were destroyed. Three more minor attacks were carried out in August. The final attack on Australian soil occurred on 12 November 1943. There was only minor damage around the town of Darwin, and no casualties.

 

On This Day ……. 31st May 1942

When the town of Darwin was bombed by the Japanese in World War II, Australians were forced to accept the reality of how close the war was. Further bombing raids continued along Australia’s northwestern coastline, and even Townsville and Mossman in far north Queensland, but the war was truly brought home to Australians living along the more populated east coast on the day that three Japanese submarines entered Sydney Harbour. On the afternoon of 31 May 1942, three Japanese submarines sat approximately thirteen kilometres out from Sydney Harbour. Each launched a midget submarine, hoping to sink an American heavy cruiser, the USS Chicago, which was anchored in the harbour. One midget was detected by harbour defences at about 8:00pm, but was not precisely located until it became entangled in the net; the two-man crew of the submarine blew up their own vessel to avoid capture. When the second midget was detected after 10:00pm, a general alarm was sounded. The third midget was damaged by depth charges, and the crew also committed suicide to avoid capture. When the second midget was detected after 11:00pm and fired upon, the submarine returned fire, hitting the naval depot ship HMAS Kuttabul, a converted harbour ferry, which served as an accommodation vessel. Nineteen Australian and two British sailors on the Kuttabul died, the only Allied deaths resulting from the attack, and survivors were pulled from the sinking vessel. The submarine presumably returned to its mother ship, known as I-24. Nine days later, on 8 June 1942, I-24 surfaced off Sydney, about 10 km off Maroubra. For four minutes, the submarine’s deck gun was fired at the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Every shot landed well short of its target, with at least 10 shells hitting the residential suburbs of Rose Bay, Woollahra and Bellevue Hill. All but one of the shells failed to explode and there were no fatalities or serious injuries.