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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORY AND HERITAGE COMMAND
Photo # 80-G-32320:  USS Hammann sinking with stern high after being torpedoed by the Japanese submarine I-168, 6 June 1942.  Photographed from USS Yorktown.

Online Library of Selected Images:
-- EVENTS -- World War II in the Pacific -- Battle of Midway --

Actions and Activities after 4 June 1942 --
USS Yorktown Salvage and Torpedoing, 5-6 June 1942

Once the abandoned Yorktown's crewmen were safely recovered, her escorts departed, leaving behind the destroyer Hughes to keep watch. Early the next day, 5 June, a seaplane from the Japanese cruiser Chikuma spotted the drifting carrier. In mid-morning, Hughes discovered two injured men who had been left behind, rescued them and examined the ship. Later, the tug Vireo came on the scene and took Yorktown under tow, while working parties jettisoned boats and an anchor. However, the old tug could do little more than keep the big ship headed into the wind.

Several other destroyers arrived early on 6 June, carrying a salvage party of Yorktown crewmen. Boarding the carrier at daybreak, the men set to work pushing guns, aircraft and other removable weights over the side, counterflooding to reduce the list and performing the many other tasks involved in saving their ship. USS Hammann lay alongside to provide power, water and other assistance, while other destroyers patrolled nearby to protect Yorktown from intruders.

By mid-afternoon, prompted by the previous day's seaplane report, the Japanese submarine I-168 crept undetected into the area. Taking a submerged attack position, she fired four torpedoes, hitting Hammann and Yorktown amidships on their starboard sides. The destroyer went down in a few minutes. Many of her crew killed or badly injured in the water when her depth charges exploded as she sank. Vireo cut the towline, and the salvage party were taken off the now even-more-greviously wounded carrier. But she continued to float, and plans were made to restart work the next morning.


This page features views related to the salvage efforts and the torpedoing of Yorktown and Hammann by the Japanese Submarine.

For further coverage on Yorktown's loss, and on her survivors, see:

  • Sinking of USS Yorktown, 7 June 1942 and
  • Survivors of USS Yorktown Return to Pearl Harbor.

    For links to views of other aspects of the Battle of Midway, see:

  • Battle of Midway, Overview and Special Image Selection.


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

    Click on the small photograph to prompt a larger view of the same image.

    Photo #: NH 95578

    Battle of Midway, June 1942


    Scene in the hangar of USS Yorktown (CV-5) during salvage operations on 6 June 1942. A Douglas TBD-1 "Devastator" torpedo plane is being prepared for jettisoning, as part of efforts to lighten the listing ship.
    Photographed by Photographer 2nd Class William G. Roy. This view looks to port, out the forward hangar bay opening, with the sea visible beyond.

    U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

    Online Image: 46KB; 740 x 605 pixels

     
    Photo #: 80-G-701899

    Battle of Midway, June 1942


    Diorama by Norman Bel Geddes, depicting USS Hammann (DD-412) alongside USS Yorktown (CV-5) assisting her salvage team, immediately before both ships were torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-168, on 6 June 1942.

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

    Online Image: 128KB; 740 x 575 pixels

    Reproductions of this image may also be available through the National Archives photographic reproduction system.

     
    Photo #: 80-G-701900

    Battle of Midway, June 1942


    Diorama by Norman Bel Geddes, depicting the torpedoing of USS Hammann (DD-412) and USS Yorktown (CV-5) by Japanese submarine I-168, during the afternoon of 6 June 1942.

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

    Online Image: 108KB; 740 x 535 pixels

    Reproductions of this image may also be available through the National Archives photographic reproduction system.

     
    Photo #: 80-G-32320

    Battle of Midway, June 1942


    USS Hammann (DD-412) sinking with stern high, after being torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-168 in the afternoon of 6 June 1942.
    Photographed from the starboard forecastle deck of USS Yorktown (CV-5) by Photographer 2nd Class William G. Roy. Angular structure in right foreground is the front of Yorktown's forward starboard 5-inch gun gallery.
    Note knotted lines hanging down from the carrier's flight deck, remaining from her initial abandonment on 4 June.

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

    Online Image: 59KB; 740 x 620 pixels

    Reproductions of this image may also be available through the National Archives photographic reproduction system.

     
    Photo #: 80-G-32321

    Battle of Midway, June 1942


    USS Hammann (DD-412) disappears beneath the waves, after being torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-168 in the afternoon of 6 June 1942.
    Photographed from the starboard forecastle deck of USS Yorktown (CV-5) by Photographer 2nd Class William G. Roy.

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

    Online Image: 71KB; 740 x 605 pixels

    Reproductions of this image may also be available through the National Archives photographic reproduction system.

     
    Photo #: 80-G-701902

    Battle of Midway, June 1942


    Diorama by Norman Bel Geddes, depicting the explosion of depth charges from USS Hammann (DD-412) as she sank alongside USS Yorktown (CV-5) during the afternoon of 6 June 1942. Both ships were torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-168 while Hammann was assisting with the salvage of Yorktown.
    USS Vireo (AT-144) is shown at left, coming back to pick up survivors, as destroyers head off to search for the submarine.

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

    Online Image: 160KB; 740 x 555 pixels

    Reproductions of this image may also be available through the National Archives photographic reproduction system.

     


    For further coverage on Yorktown's loss, and on her survivors, see:

  • Sinking of USS Yorktown, 7 June 1942 and
  • Survivors of USS Yorktown Return to Pearl Harbor.

    For links to views of other aspects of the Battle of Midway, see:

  • Battle of Midway, Overview and Special Image Selection.


    NOTES:

  • To the best of our knowledge, the pictures referenced here are all in the Public Domain, and can therefore be freely downloaded and used for any purpose.

  • Some images linked from this page may bear obsolete credit lines citing the organization name: "Naval Historical Center". Effective 1 December 2008 the name should be cited as: "Naval History and Heritage Command".


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


    Return to Naval History and Heritage Command home page.

    Page made 11 April 1999
    Coding updated 27 April 2009