"New" Photo of USS Langley at Darwin - February 1942

"New" Photo of USS Langley at Darwin - February 1942

Edward
Edward

September 19th, 2010, 4:06 pm #1

Amongst the many rare photos published in Bill Bartsch's Every Day a Nightmare : American Pursuit Pilots in the Defense of Java , 1941-1942 is one of the USS Langley taken at Darwin around 12 February 1942 (p. 102).

Can anyone tell me about the four plus aircraft that appear on her deck?

Thanks,

Edward
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John MacG
John MacG

September 19th, 2010, 7:52 pm #2

I'm not sure about this pic. I'm not convinced it's taken in Feb.'42, especially as the planes on deck look at me like , from the stern forward, SOC, two SB2Us and unknown.

Can someone convince me that the pic is correctly dated as 11th Feb, preferably by giving full chapter & verse on the camo & markings of the SOC!
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Don Kehn, Jr.
Don Kehn, Jr.

October 25th, 2010, 6:52 pm #3

Amongst the many rare photos published in Bill Bartsch's Every Day a Nightmare : American Pursuit Pilots in the Defense of Java , 1941-1942 is one of the USS Langley taken at Darwin around 12 February 1942 (p. 102).

Can anyone tell me about the four plus aircraft that appear on her deck?

Thanks,

Edward
Hi Edward,

I have two other pics of LANGLEY at Darwin, purportedly taken in Feb 1942, and they show SOCs on her truncated flight deck as well. I think the other planes are KINGFISHERS (?), but I'm not an expert on these planes at all.

I am in touch with a LANGLEY survivor these days and will ask him what he remembers.

Just got Bill's new book from him today--excited as heck!

Don
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Joined: February 28th, 2005, 3:34 am

October 26th, 2010, 11:33 am #4

Kingfishers (OS2Us) would make sense, sort of. The Langley's utility squadron, when she was based in the Philippines acting as 'mother ship' to PatWing 10's PBYs, consisted of a handful of SOCs, OS2Us and a couple of J2Fs.
I didn't think she brought any of them out to Oz, tho'.
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Melmoth the Wanderer
Melmoth the Wanderer

October 26th, 2010, 4:23 pm #5

Hello,

I just came across this photo of LANGLEY sinking on Feb 27, 1942, taken from USS WHIPPLE (DD-217), and it is remarkable for many reasons, not least of which it is the only clear pic I've seen of the secondary armament arrangements on the old flushdeckers of Asiatic Fleet/ABDA, since it shows her 4" battery (portside above deckhouse), .50cal AA, and a .30cal Lewis gun as well.

What a wonderful image; I've not seen it before now.

Enjoy!

MthW

ttp://i384.photobucket.com/albums/oo282/KMDjr/USS_Langley_AV-3_sinking_1942.jpg
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Melmoth the Wanderer
Melmoth the Wanderer

October 26th, 2010, 4:24 pm #6

Kingfishers (OS2Us) would make sense, sort of. The Langley's utility squadron, when she was based in the Philippines acting as 'mother ship' to PatWing 10's PBYs, consisted of a handful of SOCs, OS2Us and a couple of J2Fs.
I didn't think she brought any of them out to Oz, tho'.
Hello,

I just came across this photo of LANGLEY sinking on Feb 27, 1942, taken from USS WHIPPLE (DD-217), and it is remarkable for many reasons, not least of which it is the only clear pic I've seen of the secondary armament arrangements on the old flushdeckers of Asiatic Fleet/ABDA, since it shows her 4" battery (portside above deckhouse), .50cal AA, and a .30cal Lewis gun as well.

What a wonderful image; I've not seen it before now.

Enjoy!

MthW

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Tom Womack
Tom Womack

October 26th, 2010, 5:12 pm #7

Hello,

I just came across this photo of LANGLEY sinking on Feb 27, 1942, taken from USS WHIPPLE (DD-217), and it is remarkable for many reasons, not least of which it is the only clear pic I've seen of the secondary armament arrangements on the old flushdeckers of Asiatic Fleet/ABDA, since it shows her 4" battery (portside above deckhouse), .50cal AA, and a .30cal Lewis gun as well.

What a wonderful image; I've not seen it before now.

Enjoy!

MthW

ttp://i384.photobucket.com/albums/oo282/KMDjr/USS_Langley_AV-3_sinking_1942.jpg
Darn Web Sense filtering software! I'll have to check this out when I get home tonight.
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Melmoth the Wondering
Melmoth the Wondering

November 8th, 2010, 8:35 pm #8

Kingfishers (OS2Us) would make sense, sort of. The Langley's utility squadron, when she was based in the Philippines acting as 'mother ship' to PatWing 10's PBYs, consisted of a handful of SOCs, OS2Us and a couple of J2Fs.
I didn't think she brought any of them out to Oz, tho'.
Hello,

This question intrigues me, for many reasons, and I'm not yet 100% certain of the correct answer. However, I did speak again today for an hour with a survivor of LANGLEY--who had been an Asiatic Fleet sailor since late 1937--and I asked him about it pointedly.

Naturally it's hard to be too pressing or expect to much precision--usually!!--from a 92 yr old. However, in this instance, my friend is still remarkably sharp.

His response was that yes, she had just such planes from the PatWing 10 Utility Squadron at Manila/Cavite (under LT Jack C. Renard) before the war, and he could tell me with much exactness how & where they were stowed on the LANGLEY. (These were J2Fs, OS2Us, and SOCs) He at first said that the Utility Sqdn escaped the Philippines, but didn't know what happened to them ultimately--I thought this meant they weren't in Darwin--but he meant after the Java campaign ended. It was his recollection that (at least some of these) WERE with the ship in her 6wk tenure at Port Darwin as part of the base forces there...The Asiatic Fleet Orbat I've used for a number of years now shows at least one SOC-1 attached to LANGLEY.

I then asked if the photos we had that purported to show her at Darwin might be gauged by the dilapidated condition of her hull's paint job? He thought not. The ship had not been in the yard for painting--he thought--since well before the war began. Perhaps as long as a year.
But, in 1941 she spent little time operating in the Manila area anyway, and most of it in the southern P.I. Again, the ship's hull & bottom had not been repainted (at Olongapo's Dewey drydock)in the year prior to war, he thought, so I'm not certain I can make that argument for the photos.

He also claimed that LANGLEY loaded a good deal of "odd ammo" at Darwin, and among other items this included 8" projectiles...for heavy cruisers like HOUSTON, one assumes.

Any more info pertaining to this would be useful & appreciated,

MthW
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Paul Parsons
Paul Parsons

November 13th, 2010, 1:25 am #9

Hello,

I just came across this photo of LANGLEY sinking on Feb 27, 1942, taken from USS WHIPPLE (DD-217), and it is remarkable for many reasons, not least of which it is the only clear pic I've seen of the secondary armament arrangements on the old flushdeckers of Asiatic Fleet/ABDA, since it shows her 4" battery (portside above deckhouse), .50cal AA, and a .30cal Lewis gun as well.

What a wonderful image; I've not seen it before now.

Enjoy!

MthW

Here are more pictures of Langley sinking, including the one you posted. Obviously one of the pair is reversed.

I seem to recall that these pictures came from eBay, August 2004.

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Melmoth the Wanderer
Melmoth the Wanderer

November 13th, 2010, 4:13 am #10

Hi Paul,

Well, many thanks...I guess...because these might open up a can of worms I don't want to have to consider at all. Oy weh!

LANGLEY was indeed torpedoed from both sides--port & starboard--after they had pumped nine 4"/50cal projectiles into her with no apparent effect.
It looks like the two right hand photos--top & bottom--may be reversed, but I'm not certain about that yet, so don't hold me to it...

These probably came from LT CDR Lawrence Divoll's collection, I believe. He is the source for the pair (both shown here also) that are reproduced in Dwight R. Messimer's PAWNS OF WAR.

These are historically important images, nonetheless, and I am excited to see them.
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