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    Bathurst Island Northern Territory Australia
Location
Lat 11° 37' 0S Long 130° 22' 60E  Bathurst Island is located in Northern Territory in Australia. Borders Apsley Strait and Melville Island to the east, Clarence Strait, Darwin and Darwin Harbor to the southeast and Gordon Bay to the west.

Wartime History
During February 1942, a small Australian Army contingent was on Bathurst Island including Sergeant Leslie J. Powell of the 23rd Field Company, Royal Australian Engineers to prepare installations for demolition, in the event of a Japanese attack.

In late February 1942, Aboriginal Matthias Ulungura from the Snake Bay Settlement escorted a Petty Officer Hajime Toyoshima to Bathurst Island to turn him over to the nearest Australian Army personnel. Unarmed, Powell was given his pistol on a lanyard. The pair were photographed together on February 27, 1942 and became the first Japanese Prisoner Of War (POW) captured in Australia.

On March 2, 1943 a Japanese reconnaissance aircraft was sighted off Cape Fourcroy on Bathurst Island.

Bathurst Island Airfield
Wartime airfield

Bathurst Airport
Postwar airfield built roughly 2km away from the wartime era strip.

PBY-5 Catalina Bureau Number 2306
Pilot Moorer shot down February 19, 1942

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Last Updated
March 17, 2021

 

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