Fukuoka (130.400E 33.566N), the second largest city in Kyushu, was the site of two Mongol invasions, in 1274 and 1281. The second invasion fleet was destroyed by a typhoon – the original Divine Wind, or Kamikaze. By 1945 the population was about 323,200 persons.

Fukuoka sits on the west bank of the Naka River, with the city of Hakata on the east bank. The two cities form one large metropolitan area.

Coal mines in the region produced about 6.3 million tons in 1941.

The headquarters of Western District Army was located at Fukuoka. 56 Division and 26 Engineer Regiment were located here as well. The city was a regimental district for 12 Division.

The city was bombed by two full wings of B-29s on 19 June 1945, with destruction of 1.37 square miles (3.5 km2) or 21.5% of the urban area. The waters off the port were heavily mined in the closing months of the war, to the point where the occupying forces had to move to the city by rail from Sasebo.


Floor Space
Building Way Length
Merchant Tonnage
Naval Tonnage

About nine submarine chasers may be been constructed at Fukuoka Shibuilding and Iron Company.

Guerrilla Squad. During the last months of the war, a guerrilla force was organized under Western District Army at Fukuoka to conduct last-ditch resistance against any Allied invasion. The force was led by First Lieutenant Otosu Norimi, who had his men practice archery and swordsmanship on live American prisoners of war. Some prisoners were deliberately released and then hunted down and killed by Otosu's men to hone their tracking skills. Otosu himself beheaded eight prisoners in a matter of seconds to display his skills as a swordsman. Following the Japanese surrender, Otosu took to the hills and was not captured until 1949.

Rail connections




CINPAC-CINCPOA Bulletin 142-45 (accessed 2011-10-23)

Craven and Cate (1952; accessed 2011-10-12)

Frank and Shaw (1968; accessed 2011-10-23)

"Handbook on Japanese Military Forces" (1944-9-15; accessed 2011-10-23)

Maga (2001)

Parillo (1993)

Van Royen and Bowles (1952)

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