Dave Fortin's Shipwreck References


Over the years I have found several good references for anyone researching the wrecks here in the the Kwajalein Lagoon. Thanks to today's technology and the internet, many of these sources are easily found via the internet. I will list the materials that I have found to be useful, and in most cases a source for you to get them. They are not listed in any particular order. If you have found other materials to be useful in researching the wrecks here at Kwajalein, I would appreciate any input that you may have!

The Joint Army-Navy Assesment Committee (JANAC) Japanese Naval and Merchant Shipping Losses During World War II by all Causes

This document is referenced by the authors of the threee main wreck books on Kwajalein: Broadwater, Bailey and Miller (see below). This seems to be a good starting point. It is now available from Historical Database on CD-ROM. I purchased this database several years ago on floppy. It had a simple search tool, but I also found that you can read the database files into Excel and sort/search to your heart's content. What you will find is that many of the larger ships we have here are listed, but the smaller ones are not. You will also find that many of the reported positions where they are lost are not the most accurate. I suspect that most wartime records of that timeframe were not entirely accurate!

Kwajalein: Lagoon of Found Ships by John Broadwater

I believe that this is perhaps the first true wreck books on the wrecks here at Kwajalein. This is a hard-to-find book, but I have seen a couple copies listed on used book sites, so you just have to look around for it. This was a great work in my opinion! Broadwater listed many of the known wrecks and also mentioned several things that had been rumored. Using this book I was able to locate LCU-22 that no one seemed to know about when I started getting really interested in wrecks. He lists several other wrecks that are a large part of my Rumored Wrecks section. I strongly recommend this book for the wreck hunter!

As a point of interest, John Broadwater went on to pursue his career in wreck hunting and was one of the key people involved in raising the USS Monitor.

WWII Wrecks of the Kwajalein and Truk Lagoons by Dan E. Bailey

This is another great wreck book! The copy I have is hardcover and is an excellent reference. Mr. Bailey put a lot of work into describing the attacks on Kwajalein. Wartime photos and sketches are provided as well as photos taken while diving these wrecks in more recent times. As the name implies, the book also covers Truk lagoon, so there is a lot of good material for divers interested in WWII wrecks in this area! I believe this book is now out of print. I contacted North Valley Diver Publications a couple years back and Dan himself helped me hunt down a copy! Thanks Dan! I see used copies available on used book store such as Amazon.com from time-to-time, so it is not impossible to get a copy!

In the Arms of the Sea: A historical guide to the shipwrecks of Kwajalein Atoll by Mark S. Miller

This was my first wreck book that I purchased when I started diving here. It happened to be available locally and quite possibly the only book that was still in print.. I haven't seen it recently in the stores, so I am not sure if it is still in print. This book has many WWII photos, technical data on the ships, maps showing approximate ship locations, recent diving photos, etc. While I haven't met Mark, he was recently out here with the Oceanic Research Group to film The Silent Wrecks of Kwajalein Atoll. As I mentioned, I'm not sure if this is still in print, but it is another great reference for the active wreck diver here on Kwajalein!

ONI 208-J (revised) (1944) Japanese Merchant Ships Recognition Manual

ONI 208-J Supplement No. 2 Far-Eastern Small Craft

ONI 225-J Japanese Landing Operations and Equipment

ONI 226 (April 7, 1944) Allied Landing Craft and Ships

ONI 226 Supplement No. 1 (1945) Allied Landing Craft and Ships

These documents are another great source of information on the various ships you will find here at Kwajalein. What has really been a big plus is that they are now available on CD through History on CD-ROM! Most of these documents were formerly Restricted or Confidential and have since been declassified. It seems that the folks at History on CD-ROM continue to expand their inventory of products, so perhaps even more resources will be available to the researcher in the future. I strongly recommend these CDs for anyone doing serious research in the wrecks here at Kwajalein!

You can get a report from The International Registry of Sunken Ships for a nominal fee. It lists some of the ships that we know about here, but I did not feel that it really added significantly to what was already known form the references above. It did provide some speculation as to the identities of the shipwrecks at Eller Island and there is some data on some of the ships from the Bikini tests that were sunk in deep water off of Kwajalein.

Back to Wreck Page

Go to Dave Fortin's Homepage

Send e-mail to Dave Fortin

This page has been accessed: 20 times.

Created by Dave Fortin