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Monaghan

The Farragut class destroyer No.354 Monaghan was laid down on 21 November 1933 and completed on 30 August 1935. On 7 December she was ready-duty destroyer so she had steam up and was able to proceed immediately when, at 0827, she was ordered to sea in response to Ward's sighting of a midget submarine. Monaghan was moored in the north of East Loch and Lieutenant Commander William P. Burford (Burford, William P.) set a course between Ford Island and the ships moored along its north western shore and Curtiss, south of Pearl City in the mouth of Middle Loch. At 0839 Curtiss signalled a submarine sighting, but Burford was looking for a conventional boat and his signalman had to draw his attention to what looked like "an over and under shotgun barrel" some 1,200 yards off the starboard bow. Curtiss had fired on it, and claimed a hit, and the seaplane tender Tangier, the most south-westerly of the ships moored off Ford Island, had to cease fire as Monaghan fouled the target. Burford made to ram the sub, as the log of Medusa records. Monaghan's starboard side struck the starboard side of the submarine, thrusting it under water. The enemy's second torpedo was fired, but ran wide of any ship to strike the shore. Burford dropped, at some risk, a depth charge, lifting the stern of his ship out of the water, but the submarine was seen no more. The Monaghan, meanwhile, was rushing towards collision with a dredge and Burford threw his engines into emergency full astern. The collision with the dredge was light, but the destroyer ran aground temporarily. The second depth charge ordered was not dropped, a wise sailor realizing he would sink his own ship if he obeyed. Once afloat again, Monaghan proceeded to sea. A couple of hours later reports came in of Japanese ships south of Oahu and Monaghan joined St Louis, Blue and other ships in forming a defense screen, but it turned out to be a false alarm.

See also: Blue; Curtiss; East Loch; Ford Island; Medusa; Middle Loch; midget submarine; Oahu; St Louis; Ward

You can find out more about the Monaghan in the following Osprey book:

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