June 21, 1942
Today in World War II Pacific History
Day by day chronology
SUNDAY, 21 JUNE 1942
ALASKA (11th Air Force): The War Department authorizes the XI Air Force Services
Command, hitherto the Provisional Service Command, is activated at Elmendorf
Field. It is charged with maintaining and supplying all of the 11th Air Force (11th AF)
bases. Weather cancels all missions except an armed weather sortie over Kiska. Fighters fly local patrols.
IJN: In the evening, Japanese submarine I-25 uses a screen of fishing boats to avoid a minefield off the Columbia River and after dark surfaces and fires seventeen shells Fort Stevens in northwest Oregon. This was the first enemy attack against the mainland of the United States. Afterwards, departs to the west then proceeds northward.
US Army: At Fort Stevens in northwest Oregon is shelled with the garrison manning their guns and searchlights. Although lookouts could see the submarine firing it was plotted incorrectly to be out of range and the coastal guns never received permission to fire. The Japanese shells
impacted harmlessly into the sand and scrub around Battery Russell, damaging a baseball diamond backstop and a power line. The only injury was a soldier who cut their head rushing to his battle station. At about midnight, the firing ceased and the submarine departed.