Online Library of Selected Images:
EVENTS, World War II in the Pacific

Formal Surrender of Japan, 2 September 1945,
Selected and Miscellaneous Views

In the morning of 2 September 1945, more that two weeks after acceping the Allies terms, Japan formally surrendered. The ceremonies, less than half an hour long, took place on board the battleship USS Missouri, anchored with other United States' and British ships in Tokyo Bay. It was an extensively photographed occasion, and, despite overcast weather, generated many memorable images.

This page features selected views of the surrender ceremonies, a few miscellaneous images, and provides links to more extensive pictorial coverage of the day's activities.

The following pages provide more pictures of the 2 September 1945 Japanese surrender ceremonies. Pages, and the photographs they present, are organized in approximately the order that the morning's events transpired:

For views of other aspects of Japan's surrender, see: Japan Capitulates, August - September 1945

For higher resolution reproductions than the Online Library's digital images, see: "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."

Click photograph for larger image.

Photo #: USA C-2719 (Color)

Surrender of Japan, Tokyo Bay, 2 September 1945


Japanese representatives on board USS Missouri (BB-63) during the surrender ceremonies, 2 September 1945.
Standing in front are:
Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu (wearing top hat) and General Yoshijiro Umezu, Chief of the Army General Staff.
Behind them are three representatives each of the Foreign Ministry, the Army and the Navy. They include, in middle row, left to right:
Major General Yatsuji Nagai, Army;
Katsuo Okazaki, Foreign Ministry;
Rear Admiral Tadatoshi Tomioka, Navy;
Toshikazu Kase, Foreign Ministry, and
Lieutenant General Suichi Miyakazi, Army.
In the the back row, left to right (not all are visible):
Rear Admiral Ichiro Yokoyama, Navy;
Saburo Ota, Foreign Ministry;
Captain Katsuo Shiba, Navy, and
Colonel Kaziyi Sugita, Army.
(Identities those in second and third rows are from an annotated photograph in NHHC files.)

Photograph from the Army Signal Corps Collection in the U.S. National Archives.

Online Image: 95KB; 740 x 610 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 
Photo #: USA C-2717 (Color)

Surrender of Japan, Tokyo Bay, 2 September 1945


General of the Army Douglas MacArthur, Supreme Allied Commander, reading his speech to open the surrender ceremonies, on board USS Missouri (BB-63).
The representatives of the Allied Powers are behind him, including (from left to right):
Admiral Sir Bruce Fraser, RN, United Kingdom;
Lieutenant General Kuzma Derevyanko, Soviet Union;
General Sir Thomas Blamey, Australia;
Colonel Lawrence Moore Cosgrave, Canada;
General Jacques LeClerc, France;
Admiral Conrad E.L. Helfrich, The Netherlands and
Air Vice Marshall Leonard M. Isitt, New Zealand.
Lieutenant General Richard K. Sutherland, U.S. Army, is just to the right of Air Vice Marshall Isitt.
Off camera, to left, are the representative of China, General Hsu Yung-chang, and the U.S. representative, Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, USN.
Framed flag in upper left is that flown by Commodore Matthew C. Perry's flagship when she entered Tokyo Bay in 1853.

Photograph from the Army Signal Corps Collection in the U.S. National Archives.

Online Image: 79KB; 590 x 765 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 
Photo #: 80-G-332701

Surrender of Japan, Tokyo Bay, 2 September 1945


General Yoshijiro Umezu, Chief of the Army General Staff, signs the Instrument of Surrender on behalf of Japanese Imperial General Headquarters, on board USS Missouri (BB-63), 2 September 1945.
Watching from across the table are Lieutenant General Richard K. Sutherland and General of the Army Douglas MacArthur. Representatives of the Allied powers are behind General MacArthur.
Photographed from atop Missouri's 16-inch gun turret # 2.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.

Online Image: 84KB; 740 x 615 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 
Photo #: 80-G-701293

Surrender of Japan, Tokyo Bay, 2 September 1945


Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, USN, signs the Instrument of Surrender as United States Representative, on board USS Missouri (BB-63), 2 September 1945.
Standing directly behind him are (left-to-right):
General of the Army Douglas MacArthur;
Admiral William F. Halsey, USN, and
Rear Admiral Forrest Sherman, USN.

Many of the other officers present are identified in 80-G-701293 (Complete Caption).

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, National Archives collection

Online Image: 113KB; 740 x 615 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 
Photo #: 80-G-472630

Surrender of Japan, Tokyo Bay, 2 September 1945


U.S. Navy carrier planes fly in formation over USS Missouri (BB-63) during the surrender ceremonies, 2 September 1945.
Photographed by Lieutenant Barrett Gallagher, USNR, from atop Missouri's forward 16-inch gun turret.
Aircraft types include F4U, TBM and SB2C. Ship in the right distance is USS Ancon (AGC-4).

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, National Archives collection

Online Image: 66KB; 620 x 660 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 


The following images are miscellaneous items relevant to the 2 September 1945 Japanese Surrender ceremonies:

Photo #: NH 100856-KN (Color)

Surrender of Japan, Tokyo Bay, 2 September 1945


Wallet card souvenir of the occasion, issued to Lieutenant Robert L. Balfour, USNR, a member of Admiral Halsey's staff.
These cards were designed by Chief Shipfitter Donald G. Droddy and produced by USS Missouri's print shop. One was issued to each man who was on board the ship on 2 September 1945, when the surrender of Japan was formalized on her decks. The cards contain the facsimile signatures of Captain Stuart S. Murray, ship's Commanding Officer, General of the Army Douglas MacArthur, Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz and Admiral William F. Halsey.

Donation of Robert L. Balfour, 1974.

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Comannd photograph

Online Image: 104KB; 740 x 495 pixels

 
Photo #: SC 210649

USS Missouri (BB-63)


Anchored in Tokyo Bay, Japan, 2 September 1945, the day that Japanese surrender ceremonies were held on her deck.

Photograph from the Army Signal Corps Collection in the U.S. National Archives.

Online Image: 75KB; 740 x 610 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 
Photo #: SC 210636

USS Missouri (BB-63)


At anchored in Tokyo Bay, Japan, 2 September 1945, the day that Japanese surrender ceremonies were held on her deck.
Note SC-1 floatplanes on her catapults and boats moored at her stern.

Photograph from the Army Signal Corps Collection, National Archives.

Online Image: 67KB; 740 x 615 pixels

Reproductions may be available through the National Archives

 




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