|For full details: HOSTAGES
TO FREEDOM - The Fall of Rabaul.
the first printing of Hostages to Freedom - The Fall of Rabaul in
1995, and its reprint in 2000, and again in 2006, the author has received
a wealth of further information from those interested and/or involved in
events concerning Rabaul during the Pacific War. For this he is most grateful,
as the story of Rabaul is a continuing one. Please feel free to contact
Peter Stone with further imformation or comment.
those of you who have the book, you may be interested in some of the material
recently received. The website should have been created years ago and thus
it will take some time to add further info. But at least we have made a
start. Some of the information has been updated (corrected) in the second
printing, as is indicated by [Reprint 1999]. It should also be mentioned
that the second printing corrected many (but not all) of the annoying typos
that seem to sneak by.
of the British POWs mentioned (on several pages) is Frank J. Docketty.
This has been listed as Dockerty. Names are very important, and I am grateful
to his son Colin Docketty for bringing this to my attention.
ERROR - Page 39. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000].
line from bottom - date of 4 January 1994 should read 4 January 1942.
- page 81. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000].
line from bottom - Cpl. H. Holmes. (initial missing in first edition).
ERROR - page 96. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000].
Kusunose died 17 December 1945, not 1946.
CAPTION - page 105. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000].
trek made by Private Bill harry was 80 kilometres, not 140 kilometres.
CAPTAIN J.T.McCALLUM - page 107. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000].
last paragraph - it is recorded that Captain J.T. McCallum was on the Lakatoi,
escaping ffrom New Britain in March 1942. This was not so - he was a prisoner
of war of the Japanese at the time and is seen in the photo on page 274
taken in Japan. This unfortunate error was picked up by the author immediately
after the first edition had been printed. I contacted the relatives of
Captain McCallum with an apology - they confirmed that he had been a POW.
I made the error by accepting a copy of a diary purported to have been
written by a Captain John McCallum. It had been in the files of Frank Holland
who featured in the rescue of several men from the south coast. The diary
is clearly labelled as those of John McCallum, but could not possibly have
been - and I checked that there were not two John McCallums in Lark Force
- but, he could have been a civilian!!. Anyway, it should have been picked
up in the editing. The reprint merely states "a diary entry", as the author
- page 214. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000].
the first paragraph of the first printing, I state that Rabaul was being
bombed right up to the surrender in September 1945. In the second I changed
it to August 1945, when the Japanese actually surrendered. It was in September
that the surrender was accepted in New Britain - I doubt if Rabaul would
have been bombed after the actual surrender in Japan. It is a small, but
CAPTION - page 268. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000].
photo at right is that of Lt. J.H. ‘Jim' MacGregor Dowsett, who later
became ‘officer-in-charge' of the Chinese resettlement in Rabaul, not Captain
A.A. Roberts as indicated in the original printing.
275. Third paragraph. (Corrected in Third Edition, 2006)
announcement by Minister Ward was made during a Parliamentary debate on
5 October 1945. (The incorrect date shown as July 1942 was in fact the
date of the loss of the Montevideo Maru).
Australian government was not aware of the loss of the Montevideo Maru
until after the surrender.
(Victoria) State Library, Commonwealth of Australia Parliamentary
Debates, Book Number LT 328.9402.
following has been added to the third edition:
ROCCA - Page 278 (Correction in Third reprint, 2006)
mention that Joseph Rocca was tried and hung after the war. I now do not
believe this was so. Several people contacted me about this but none were
convincing enough to change the information until a gentleman rang from
Queensland who is friendly with the Rocca family, He stated that Joseph
Rocca survived the war and died possibly of pneumonia sometime in the 1950s.
The author's evidence that he had been hung came from New Guinea 1942-1944
by Timothy Hall, Methuen Australia Pty Ltd, 1981.
CAPTION - page 282. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000]
row: Irene Chan is holding Jeffrey Chan, not Francis Chan.
IDENTIFICATION - page 283. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000]
there were two 'Mows' in Rabaul prior to the arrival of the Japanese, there
was some confusion, to say the least, in providing a positibe identification
of those in the photograph, even amongst through from the Chinese community.
I am indebted to Charles Yip in Sydney for the correct caption, as follows:
memorable photograph, taken in the late 1930s, was incorrectly captioned
when published in the first printing of this volume. Originally it
stated that the man seated at front with the children was Mo Pui Sam, the
Methodist reverend. This is not so. The man is Thomas Mow, a teacher, known
as Mow Sin Sung, ie teacher Mow. He arrived in Rabaul in 1934 to teach
at the Overseas Chinese School run by the Methodists. His son Paul, now
living in Sydney, was one of the first Chinese boys to attend secondary
school in Australia, where he continued on to University earning a Batchelor
of Economics degree before returning to Rabaul. Europeans did not welcome
an educated Chinese in Rabaul, so Paul moved on to the USA where he obtained
a Masters degree. He returned to Rabaul but being over-qualified, ‘bowed
to the inevitable' and opened a trade store.
Tung Hung, known as Tom Hung, (rear far left),
Wing Cheong (standing second from left),
Ping Kim (far right),
Kwan Tai (lady, standing centre, dark top),
June Hey (to the left in the photo of lady above),
Sui Yeung (to the right in the photo of Chee Kwan Tai),
Chun Sing (young boy squatting third from keft),
Chun Wai (boy squatting third from right, partially obscured).
IDENTIFICATION - Page 314 (Added to Third reprint, 2006)
provided courtesy of Don Green, Queensland.
prisoners of war are civilians captured relatively soon after the invasion
of New Britain in January 1942. One of the civilians has been positively
identified, another a possibility.
white civilian gentleman fourth from left (of the civilians) with the beard
and balding pate is Hugh Wheatley, a mixed race (British Solomons) medical
assistant, probably captured at Pondo. (Note: he is standing immediately
behind the Japanese second from left.) The civilian man standing second
from left of the civilians (no shirt, full face), could be Jack Beaumont
was was a mechanic at Carpenters in Rabaul.(Beaumont is the uncle of Don
other men are possibly as listed, although no name to face was provided.
These men were known to have been captured and intered with Beaumont and
Wheatley under the Japanese Navy. They are: A. Chauncey, surveyor; Harry
Badger, chainman; W. Fitzgibbon, master plumber; Ken Sherwood, telephone
mechanic; Alan Cameron, electrican engineer; Ernest Buchmann, motor mechanic;
Albert Evensen*, manager of Pondo plantation; Bill Korn, manager at Pondo;
a Captain Klawe, Scandinavian ship's captain.
mixed-race gemtleman smoking a cigarette on far right is thought to be
a friend of Joseph Rocca who features in the book.
is suggested that the civilians at the time the photo was taken (date unknown)
were captives of the Minseiwo, the Japanese adminisstration, under
the management of a Mr Morimoto. Morimoto was known not to have worn badges
of rank, and could be the man squatting second from left.
is thought that if the Japanese are indeed Minseiwo, the photo could have
been taken at their camp at Pondo. It is thought that the civilian prisoners
were later transfered to Japanese Navy control in a jail in Rabaul on Malaguna
Road - the photo could have been taken at the time of the "hand over",
possibly sometime later in 1942. It is also surmised that these civilian
POWs were later transfered to the 6th Field Kempetai, where they were later
executed, possibly at Matupi, later in the war. Don Green states there
is evidence to suggest that the men were alive up to about two months before
the surrender (in New Britain) in September 1945. It is a fact that none
of the men survived the war, and there is no evidence that they were transfered
to Japan or other POW camps away from New Britain.
Written, incorrectly, as 'Evenson' in the third printing.
DOCUMENT DATE - page 338. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000]
copy of the surrender document shows a date of September 1942. If only
it were so. Should be 1945 of course.
IDENTIFICATION - page 352 [Corrrected in Reprint 2000]
was Johnson Seeto who married Doreen Chan, so presumably that is Johnson,
not Jackson his brother, holding hands with Doreen.
NAME - page 369. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000]
indicates Kisargel Maru - should be Kisaragi Maru.
MISSING - page 371. [Corrrected in Reprint 2000]
Commonwealth Marine Salvage Board was NOT averse to making a pound or two.
INCORRECT - page 474 (Corrected in second reprint, 2000)
line - should read 1947, not 1945 - date of suicide of Lt.General Adachi.
on photograph. incorrect.
J.H. Bowering should read Lt. J.H.Bowring.