Yesterday                               Tomorrow

August 24th, 1942 (MONDAY)


The US 8th Air Force in England flies Mission 5: B-17 Flying Fortresses bomb the shipyard of Ateliers et Chantiers Maritime de la Seine at Le Trait, France, dropping 24 tons of bombs.

Major General Carl Spaatz, Commanding General US 8th Air Force, reports the RAF attitude towards US daylight precision bombing seems to be changing from one of scepticism to one of tentative approval.

USAAF 307th Fighter Squadron moves to Merston, Surrey. . 

Prime Minister Winston Churchill returns to England after meeting with Soviet Premier Josef Stalin in Moscow. 

Trawler HMS Magdalen commissioned.

GERMANY: Thierack is appointed by Hitler as the new Minister of Justice. He has the power to set aside any or all written law. (Gene Hanson)

U-193 launched.
U-981and U-982 laid down.

U.S.S.R.: Black Sea Fleet and Azov Flotilla: Submarine "M-3" - mined and sunk in Odessa Gulf, close to Bolshoi Fontan (raised in 1951).
Baltic Fleet, Ladoga and Onega Flotillas: Shipping loss. SKR "Burya" - mined at Bolshoi Tuters Is. (later raised) and  MS "T-204" ("Fugas") - mined close to Lavensari Is.
Black Sea Fleet and Azov Flotilla: Shipping loss: GB "Bug" and SKR "Shturman" exploded by crew to prevent capturing, in Temruk. GB "Don" - damaged by aviation and exploded by crew to prevent capturing, in Temruk (Sergey Anisimov)(69)

The slowing German offensive in the Caucasus creeps to within 85 miles (137 kilometres) of the Grozny oil complex. 

LIBYA: U.S. Army, Middle East Air Forces B-24 Liberators attack Tobruk harbour.

NEW GUINEA: A Japanese amphibious force leaves Buna in seven large barges and New Ireland Island, Bismarck Archipelago, in transports, heading for Milne Bay; the barges are detected by an Australian coastwatcher during the afternoon.

SOLOMON ISLANDS: Guadalcanal: East of Guadalcanal, US scout planes flying from Enterprise spot carrier Ryujo. A strike is dispatched. Then Shokaku and Zuikaku are sighted. Attempts to redirect the attack from Admiral Fletcher are unsuccessful.
The Ryujo is sunk.

Japanese attacks from the two fleet carriers find Enterprise and while damaged, she is still able to land planes. One of the bombs is caught on film at the exact moment of explosion. Most of the Japanese planes in this strike choose the Enterprise, only a few attack  North Carolina for superficial damage. The steering gear on Enterprise goes out of commission during damage control, and for 30 minutes the "Big E" circles with her rudder jammed hard to starboard. A second Japanese strike is spotted on radar while the Enterprise is disabled. It heads for an estimated position and does not find the US forces.

The new tactic of centralized fighter direction, using radar, is marred by radio frequencies jammed with too many American transmissions. The mission of this Japanese Naval task force is to protect a supply and reinforcement convoy under command of Admiral Tanaka. This will become known as "The Battle of the Eastern Solomons". The final act involving the convoy will occur tomorrow.
The battle pits 3 IJN aircraft carriers, HIJMS Ryujo, HIJMS Shokaku and HIJMS Zuikaku against 2 USN carriers, USS Enterprise (CV-6) and Saratoga (CV-3). The seaplane carrier is damaged by SBD-3 Dauntlesses of Bombing Squadron Three (VB-3) and Scouting Squadron Three (VS-3) and TBF-1 Avengers of Torpedo Squadron Eight (VT-8) in USS Saratoga (CV-3). Light cruiser HIJMS Jintsu is damaged by SBD-3s of Marine Scout Bombing Squadron Two Hundred and Thirty Two (VMSB-322) based on Guadalcanal. Planes from HIJMS Ryujo bomb USMC positions at Lunga Point on Guadalcanal but SBD Dauntlesses of Bombing Squadron Three (VB-3) and TBF Avengers of Torpedo Squadron Eight (VT-8) in USS Saratoga sink HIJMS Ryujo; 3 USAAF B-17s that are patrolling the area also bomb the Japanese ships from high altitude but hit nothing.

USS Enterprise is damaged by 3 direct hits and 4 near misses by aircraft from the two remaining IJN carriers but attacks against the battleship USS North Carolina (BB-55) are unsuccessful; USS Saratoga is hidden by a rain squall and escapes attack. As soon as the US carriers land all of their aircraft, they withdraw from the area. The Japanese do the same thing.

During the night four Japanese warships shell Henderson Field on Guadalcanal.

For more details on this battle, see Tim Lanzendörfer's web site

Japan loses 21 planes, the US just three.

BISMARCK ARCHIPELAGO: Allied Air Forces B-17s bomb Gasmata Island and airfields at Rabaul, New Britain Island. 

PACIFIC OCEAN: USN submarine USS Guardfish (SS-217) torpedoes and sinks a Japanese merchant passenger-cargo ship off entrance to Sendai harbour, on the northeast coast of Honshu, Japan. 


TERRITORY OF ALASKA: In the Aleutians, a photo reconnaissance sortie scheduled to be flown by a US 11th Air Force B-24 Liberator is cancelled due to overcast.
In a public opinion poll the following results were obtained:

CANADA Minesweeper HMCS Llewellyn and Lloyd George commissioned. Tug HMCS DW Murray assigned to Halifax.

U.S.A.: If the Allies build a strong enough air force do you think that they can win the war virtually alone?

Yes 40%

No 49%

No opinion 11%

August 29, 1942

As long as the war lasts would you favour or oppose a committee of judges with full power to set aside any peacetime laws and regulations that they felt were slowing the war effort?

Favour 58%

Oppose 23%

No opinion 19%

(Jay Stone)

Hollywood stars Tyrone Power, 28, and Henry Fonda, 37, join the armed forces. Power joins the Marine Corps but doesn't go to boot camp until he finishes the motion picture "Crash Dive" about submarines.  Fonda joins the Navy and goes straight to boot camp as a Seaman Apprentice. Power went to Officer Candidate School and was commissioned and then took flight training and was later assigned as a transport pilot in the Pacific. He was discharged in Jan 46. Fonda served on the destroyer USS Satterlee (DD-626) rising to the rank of Quartermaster Third Class. Based on the recommendation of the executive officer on the ship, Fonda was commissioned a Lieutenant (jg) and served in Air Combat Intelligence in the Central Pacific; he was discharged in Oct 45.

Destroyer USS Beale launched.
Submarine USS Cero laid down.
Destroyer USS Luce laid down.

Escort carrier USS Santee is commissioned.

BRAZIL: Rights of non-belligerency are granted to the Government of Brazil by Uruguay, Chile, Argentina, Peru, Bolivia, and Paraguay.

ATLANTIC OCEAN: U-162 sank SS Moena.
U-601 sank SS Kujbyshew.
U-23 sank SS Shkval.


Top of Page

Yesterday        Tomorrow