BREAKING THE OUTER RING: Marine Landings in the Marshall Islands
by Captain John C. Chapin, USMCR (Ret)
All of the basic Marine histories for World War II
contain detailed accounts of the Marshalls operation. This monograph
represents a summary, supplemented by individual experiences drawn from
the Personal Papers and Oral Histories Collections in the Marine Corps
Historical Center, Washington, D.C.
Among the most useful were: 1stLt John C. Chapin,
USMCR, The 4th Marine Division in World War II (Washington:
Historical Division, HQMC, 1945); LtCol Robert D. Heinl, Jr., USMC, and
LtCol John A. Crown, USMC, The Marshalls: Increasing the Tempo
(Washington: Historical Branch, G-3 Division, HQMC, 1954); Historical
Division, HQMC. "The Marshall Islands Operations." Unpublished draft,
n.d. World War IIMarshall Islands Records File. Marine Corps
Historical Center, Washington, D.C.; LtCol S. L. A. Marshall, AUS,
Island Victory (Washington: Infantry Journal Press, 1944); Carl
W. Proehl, ed., The Fourth Marine Division in World War II
(Washington: Infantry Journal Press, 1946); Henry I. Shaw, Jr., Bernard
C. Nalty, and Edwin T. Turnbladh, Central Pacific DriveHistory
of U.S. Marine Corps Operations in World War II, vol 3 (Washington:
Historical Branch, G-3 Division, HQMC, 1966).
In the Personal Papers Collection Unit, Marine Corps
Historical Center, Washington, D.C., the following files have been
useful: First Lieutenant John C. Chapin (PC 671); Master Sergeant Roger
M. Emmons (PC 304); Private First Class Robert F. Graf (PC 1946);
Princeton University Collection (PC 2216).
Transcripts of interviews in Oral History Collection,
Marine Corps Historical Center, Washington, D.C: BGen William W.
Buchanan; BGen Melvin L. Krulewitch; Col William P. McCahill; MajGen
William W. Rogers; LtGen James L. Underhill.
About the Author
Captain John C. Chapin earned a bachelor of arts
degree with honors in history from Yale University in 1942 and was
commissioned later that year. He served as a rifle-platoon leader in the
24th Marines, 4th Marine Division, and was wounded in action during
assault landings on Roi-Namur and Saipan.
Transferred to duty at the Historical Division,
Headquarters Marine Corps, he wrote the first official histories of the
4th and 5th Marine Divisions. Moving to Reserve status at the end of
World War II, he earned a master's degree in history at George
Washington University with a thesis on "The Marine Occupation of Haiti,
Now a captain in retired status, he has been a
volunteer at the Marine Corps Historical Center for 10 years. During
that time, he wrote History of Marine Fighter-Attack (VMFA) Squadron
115. With support from the Historical Center and the Marine Corps
Historical Foundation, he then spent some years researching and
interviewing for the writing of a new book, Uncommon MenThe
Sergeants Major of the Marine Corps. This was published in 1992 by
the White Mane Publishing Company.
THIS PAMPHLET HISTORY, one in a series devoted
to U.S. Marines in the World War II era, is published for the education
and training of Marines by the History and Museums Division,
Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps, Washington, D.C., as a part of the U.S.
Department of Defense observance of the 50th anniversary of victory in
Editorial costs of preparing this pamphlet have been
defrayed in part by a bequest from the estate of Emilie H. Watts, in
memory of her late husband, Thomas M. Watts, who served as a Marine and
was the recipient of a Purple Heart.
WORLD WAR II COMMEMORATIVE SERIES
DIRECTOR OF MARINE CORPS HISTORY AND MUSEUMS
Brigadier General Edwin H. Simmons, USMC (Ret)
WORLD WAR II COMMEMORATIVE SERIES
Benis M. Frank
George C. MacGillivray
EDITING AND DESIGN SECTION, HISTORY AND MUSEUMS DIVISION
Robert E. Struder, Senior Editor; W. Stephen Hill, Visual
Catherine A. Kerns, Composition Services
Technician, R.D. Payne, VolunteerWeb Edition
Marine Corps Historical Center
Building 58, Washington Navy Yard
Washington, D.C. 20374-5040
PCN 190 003124 00