368th Harbor Craft Company
Condensed from the Adjutant General’s Office — Historical Records Section
Organization activated 8 May 1944 at the Seattle Port of Embarkation, HQ
Seattle Port of Embarkation, with an authorized strength of five
Commissioned Officers, one Chief Warrant Officer, five Warrant Officers junior grade, and two hundred eighty enlisted men.
The organization immediately entered training at the Seattle Port of
Embarkation. Classes of EM (enlisted men) assigned to Diesel School,
Rigging School, Seamanship School, Navigation School, Signaling School, Fire Fighting School, Swimming School, and First aid school. Crews were also assigned to various small craft for practical experience in maintenance and operation.
June 11, 1944 the organization arrived at the Tulalip Ammunition Backup Storage Depot, Marysville, Washington, set up camp and began extended field training and bivouac.
The organization returned from Marysville, Washington on June 17, 1944.
On August 17, 1944 the organization departed SPE (Seattle) and arrived at ‘Fort Lawton, Washington for preliminary staging.
On September 1, 1944 the organization departed Fort Lawton and arrived at the Camp Stoneman staging area, Pittsburg California on September 3, 1944.
On September 20, 1944 the entire organization departed Camp Stoneman and arrived at Fort Mason, California and boarded the S. S. Monterey. The S. S. Monterey left port on September 21, 1944, destination unknown.
(Note: ship destinations were not publicized during wartime.)
On October 8, 1944 the S. S. Monterey arrived at Hollandia, Dutch New Guinea, having traveled a distance of 8,000 miles. The organization debarked at Hollandia, Dutch New Guinea, on October 10, 1944 and arrived at Camp Walker on October 1 1,1944.
The organization departed Camp Walker and Arrived at Waab Beach on
October 26, 1944. The organization operated the USASOS Floating Craft
Pool. Duties involved operating tugs and small craft; deck loading barges and making up tows; operating two thirty ton cranes; operating a rigging loft; and servicing, repairing and maintaining all craft in the pool.
The Asiatic-Pacific campaign medal authorized for all officers and enlisted men on November 8, 1944.
On December 31, 1944 the 30 ton crane BD 1159 was attacked by a
Japanese Aircraft and hit by one anti-personnel bomb. The crew suffered no casualties and damage to the crane was slight.
Five officers and 140 enlisted men departed from Hollandia, Dutch New
Guinea on various small craft on January 10, 1945 arriving at Tacloban, Leyte, Philippine Islands, January 22, 1945. The organization was assigned to the ADSOS Pool, Harbor Craft, operating small craft, making up tows, operating two 30 ton floating cranes, and servicing all craft in the pool.
On January 26, 1945 WOJG Pera departed with 13 enlisted men and floating crane BDI 159 for destination unknown.
(Date not given) WOJG Pera stated in a letter to HQ that his detachment arrived safely at its destination. Enemy mortar fire and artillery fire had been experienced in the first few days, but there had been no casualties to men or equipment and they had carried on their work in the usual manner.
Effective the organization was redesignated as the 36O Transportation Corps Harbor Craft Company under a New Table of Organization and Equipment, dated September 1944. (Changes were mostly in personnel and officers, company enlisted strength was reduced from 280 to 268.)
From Base X 26 May 1945 — During the past month the organization has carried on routine operation of tugs and the crane in Manila Bay, marked by no unusual occurrence. No reports have been received form the units on detached service with the QS-5, QS-6 and BD 1159. (Do not know what the abbreviation QS stands for)
The QS-5 with two Warrant Officers junior grade and eight enlisted men arrived at Manila June 3, 1945, from detached service at APO 72.
On June 17, 1945, Lt. Barfield and WOJG Hughes with 89 enlisted men departed on the OL-4-A for Marivales, Luzon Island, Pel. to prepare a camp area in anticipation of a movement of the entire organization to that station.
On July 2, 1945 Pfc. John J. Bennett was seriously burned as the result of an explosion and fire on the small craft J-1761. He was taken to the hospital and died later that day.
On July 8, 1945 the detachment stationed at Marivales took into custody a man said to be a Japanese sailor who had swum from Corregidor to Bataan. The prisoner was taken to Manila and turned over to the Office of the Provost Marshall.
On July 10, 1945 6 officers, 7 WOJG, and 191 enlisted men departed from Manila by water at 1100 and arrived at Marivales at 1900.
On July 27, 1945 the entire company was assembled to witness the awarding of the Bronze Star Medal to eight men for meritorious achievement against the enemy in Dutch New Guinea. (Citations attached in copy form AG’s Office.)
Note: this next section is out of date with the above, it was labeled as the third section from the AG’s Office
January 26, 1945 WOJG Pera departed with a crew of 13 men for Subic Bay on the 30-ton conical floating crane BD 1159 in a Navy Convoy. Subic Bay was reached on February 2, 1945, two days after the initial landings had been made on the beach. Mr. Pera reported to Col. Keys of the 592nd E.S.B.
The crane was anchored in a small cove north of Rifle Range Beach. The next morning a heavy squall came up causing the crane to drag anchor and drift some 400 yards from the original anchorage. That night the enemy attempted to knock out a bridge on a river north of Olongapo and subjected it to mortar fire. Ten mortar shells fell into the cove from which the crane had drifted.
During this period the enemy lines were four miles away, being subjected to heavy artillery and small arms fire. The enemy’s return artillery fire was light, their small arms fire was heavy.
On February 25, 1945 the crane BD 1159 received orders to commence salvage operations on an LCM. From that date until March 25, 1945 the crane was busy unloading Liberty ships and doing salvage work. On March 25, 1945, the crane departed from Subic Bay for Manila Bay and upon arrival there resumed discharging Liberty ships.
On February 5, 1945 a detachment of 53 enlisted men with 2 ST’s, 3 WT’s, 2 D Boats and 10 LCM’s under the command of 1 st Lt. Barfield departed from Lazeretto Island Leyte for Base X, in a Navy Convoy. This convoy arrived at Subic Bay on February 27, 1945. The detachment lay over in Subic Bay until 0200 March 1, 1945, at which time it joined another Navy Convoy and departed for Manila Bay, arriving at 1500 on the same day.
When the convoy passed Corregidor Island our forces were subjecting it to heavy bombing and strafing. Arriving at the mouth of the Passig River the detachment found that heavy fighting was going on in the Walled City, and South Harbor had not been opened to use because it was still subjected to small arms fire from snipers concealed on sunken ships.
For four weeks the detachment worked 18 hours a day, operating tugs towing barges to and from Liberty ships and operating LCM’s which were used to discharge cargo and assist the Navy in salvage work. During this time the detachment furnished all the water transportation used by the Port Command of Manila.
The volume of work was so great that at times the crews of the tug boats operated for 24 and 48 hour periods without relief. Lt. Barfield reports that despite the long hours of work, inadequate quarters and poor food, the men gave him the highest cooperation.
On March 21, 1945 Pfc Wallace died by accidental drowning in the performance of his duty as a deckhand on a LCM.
On April 4, 1945 WOJG Campbell with 11 enlisted men was placed on detached service with the 492nd CIC, aboard the Army Vessel QS-6. To date this organization has received no news from this detachment. (The date being April 27,1945.)
On April 6, 1945, two officers and 36 enlisted men departed APO 72 for duty at APO 75. The detachment joined the command of Lt. Barfield.
On April 15, 1945 S/Sgt. Ronquille with 5 other enlisted men departed from APO 72 on two ST’s for detached service at Mindanao.
On April 17, 1945 two officers, two WOJG’s and 111 enlisted men departed APO 72 for APO 75 arriving on April 22, 1945.
Note: this is the end of the report from the AG’s Office.