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USS Whitney, Report of Pearl Harbor Attack

  U.S.S. Whitney 10/ck
    c/o Fleet Post Office,
Pearl Harbor, T.H.,
December 10, 1941.
AD4/A16-3/( 068 )    

From: The Commanding Officer.
To: The Commander-in-Chief, United States Pacific Fleet, Submarine Base, Pearl Harbor, T.H..
Subject: Report of engagement with Japanese on December 7, 1941.
Reference: (a) U.S. Navy Regulations, 1920 - Art. 712(1).
(b) CinC PacFlt despatch 102102 of December, 1941.
ENCLOSURE: (A) Report of Executive Officer on subject engagement.

  1. In accordance with references (a) and (b), the following report with enclosure (A) is submitted: -
    1. On Sunday, December 7, 1941, when subject engagement began, the U.S.S. Whitney was moored bow and stern to buoys X8 and X8S respectively in Pearl Harbor, T.H., in six fathoms of water with ten fathoms of starboard anchor chain and a 1 5/8" wire preventer forward and a 2" wire and 1 5/8" wire preventer aft. Boiler #1 in use for auxiliary purposes, supplying steam, electricity, fresh and flushing water to the Conyngham, Reid, Tucker, Case and Selfridge moored alongside to port. The following personnel were aboard:

      Name Rank Administrative Duty Battle Station
      PIGMAN, N.M., Comdr Commanding Bridge
      PARKS, G.B., Comdr Executive Officer Battle 2
      TAYLOR, F. LtCdr Engineer Officer Eng. Room
      WOODSON, C.P., LtCdr Repair Officer Aft. Control
      THOMPSON, M.C. LtCdr Gunnery Officer Fire Control
      PETERSON, N., Lt. D-M USNR Navigator Bridge
      MARTIN, M.M., Lt (jg) Communication Comm. Control
      PRICE, M.O. Ens. D-V(G) USNR W and Div. Off. Asst. Fire Control
      REED, E.W., Jr., Ens. D-V(G), USNR W & Div. Off. Fd. Main Bat.
      CEDERSTROM, J., Ens. D-V(G), USNR W & Div. Off.  
      BENTON, W.A. III., Ens. E-V(G), USNR Asst. Eng. Dyn. Flat.
      SLOCUM, W.W., Ens. E-V(G), USNR Asst. Eng. Eng. Room
      FRASHER, L.R., Lt. USNR Sen. Asst. Eng. Eng. Room
      SCHAAF, C., Comdr (SC) Supply Officer Code Board
      SCHWARTZ, N.M., Ens. SC-V(G) USNR Disbursing Code Board
      MARTIN, R.H., Ens. SC-V(G) USNR Asst. Supply Code Board
      SMITH, R.W., Boatswain Ship's Boatswain Deck Rep.
      LARSEN, J., Ch. Gunner Ship's Gunner AA Battery
      RAPP, L.B., Electrician Elec. Rep. Off. Elec. Rep.
      HORSLEY, G.E., Radio Elec. Rad. Snd. Rep. Radio Rm.
      SMITH, W., Ch. Mach. Asst. Rep. Off. Eng. Repair
      REDMAN, J.L., Machinist Asst. Eng. Firerooms
      BROWN, F.P., Ch. Pay Clk Asst. Supply Code Board
      STEPHENSON, R.S., Ensign C-V, USNR Staff Duty Officer.  
      CREW: Approximately 90% of the enlisted personnel were on board.

    2. At 0759 Air Raid Attack by Japanese Air Force. Fire and explosions on Ford Island. Sounded General Alarm. 0800 sounded General Quarters. At about 0801 first plane passed over Whitney at low altitude straffing with machine guns. 0804 commenced firing at Japanese planes with .50 caliber anti-aircraft guns. About 0805 received signal to get underway. 0809 making preparations for getting underway. Supply Department issued supplies to destroyers alongside. 0810 Set Condition Afirm, commenced firing at Japanese planes with 3" .50 caliber anti-aircraft guns. About 0820 Japanese plane in flames fell in north channel in vicinity of berth X-Ray 5. 0830 Gunnery Department issued ammunition and Ordnance stores to destroyers alongside. 0830 secured steam to destroyers Conyngham, Reid, Tucker, Case and Selfridge. 0846 cut in #1 boiler. 0855 second air attack by Japanese bombing planes, anti-aircraft guns firing at same. 0905 observed one Japanese plane fell down in flames on hill top, bearing N.E. True from ship. 0930 second air attack over. 1000 the Reid and Selfridge got underway from alongside. 1025 secured electricity to destroyers alongside. 1105 conducted intermittent firing through breaks in clouds at bombing planes. About 1130 received orders for the Whitney to remain at anchor. 1155 Captain O.D. King (MC), USN (Staff Comdesbatfor) and Lieutenant Commander C.J. Stuart (MC) USN, left to report to Solace. 235 started taking on fuel oil from YO #28 moored alongside to starboard. 1335 five lengths of hose and two submersible pumps were sent to the Raleigh. 1400 Captain O.D. King, (MC), USN (Staff Comdesbatfor) and Lieutenant Commander C.J. Stuart (MC), USN returned from the Solace. 1505 finished taking on fuel oil, received 213,288 gallons. 1527 YO #28 cast off, making starboard side clear. 1655 the Case left from alongside. 1705 the Tucker left from alongside. 1720 the Conyngham left from alongside, leaving port side clear. 1720 darkened ship. 2110 commenced firing at planes overhead, believed to be Japanese. Sounded General Quarters. 2145 secured from General Quarters, set Condition one in the anti-aircraft battery. Set Condition Baker.
    3. There were no personnel nor damage to material on board the Whitney.
    4. The personnel on board were calm and unexcited throughout the engagement. They manned their battle stations efficiently and carried out all orders promptly and without confusion. All officers and men of the Whitney are deserving of the highest praise for their conduct during the engagement.


Copy to:

    Comdesflot ONE


Pearl Harbor, T.H.,
December 10, 1941.

Report of the Executive Officer, U.S.S. Whitney on the engagement with the Japanese Air Force on Sunday, December 7, 1941.

At about 0759 while in the wardroom of the Whitney the explosion of bombs were heard. I stepped out on deck and saw the fires on Ford Island. At about that time the O.O.D. sounded the General Alarm, and at 0800 the word was passed to go to General Quarters. I went immediately to the bridge. The reports from the various departments were taken. At about 0804 our machine guns commenced firing. At about 0810 the report that Material Condition "Afirm" was set throughout the ship was received. Orders were issued to prepare for getting underway. I went below to supervise and expedite the supply of anti-aircraft ammunition. After a rapid inspection of the ship I went back to the bridge, and arrived about the time of the second attack. After the attack was completed, I went below again to see if the ammunition and provisions were being transferred expeditiously to the alongside destroyers.

During the engagement a large percentage of the crew of the Whitney came under my observation. They were all doing their duty in a cool and collected manner. All orders were obeyed promptly without confusion.

Commander, U.S. Navy,
Executive Officer


Source: Enclosure (E) to CINCPAC action report Serial 0479 of 15 February 1942, World War II action reports,
Modern Military Branch, National Archives and Records Administration, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD 20740.

Published: Fri Mar 16 10:20:39 EDT 2018