LANDING SHIP TANKS (LST)
AND LANDING CRAFT INFANTRY, LARGE
LCVP'S AND LCM'S 
AT THE STRAND AND KISSING POINT, TOWNSVILLE
DURING WW2

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visits since 22 October 2000

 

On 21 May 1943, a number of Landing Ship Tanks (LST's) were bought in to the beach at the Strand in Townsville, adjacent to Fort Kissing Point. This would have been in the approximate location of the current Rock Pool.

They unloaded heavy military equipment and earth moving machinery. Steel matting was placed on the sand to allow the large machinery to be moved across the soft sand. It was then transported to the large American warehouses and workshops located between Aitkenvale and Mount Louisa.

United States L.S.T. Landing Craft at Kissing Point, Townsville in the
location of today's Rock Pool. USS LST-334 features in the foreground.

 

United States L.S.T. Landing Craft including USS LST-334
at Kissing Point, Townsville
in the location of today's Rock Pool.

 


The Library of Virginia US Army Signal Corps Photograph Collection

1 January 1943, LST-334 (foreground) and LST-390 (background) between Piers 4 and 5
Newport News VA, loading 3/4 ton 4X4 Dodge command reconnaissance cars, 
to be shipped to Cactus and the SWPA

 

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United States L.S.T. Landing Craft at Kissing Point
in the location of today's Rock Pool in early 1943
Note the old timber and mesh swimming enclosure
towards the right of the photograph

 

kp01.jpg (49783 bytes)

United States L.S.T. Landing Craft at Kissing Point
in the location of today's Rock Pool in early 1943

The Coast Guard-manned USS LST-168 of LST Flotilla 7, Group 21, Division 42 under the command of Lt Arthur S. Moreau, USCGR left New Orleans, Louisiana, in convoy under Commander, Flotilla 7 and reached Cleveland Bay, Townsville on 10 June 1943.

Landing Craft Infantry, Large, LCI (L),
unloading at Kissing Point

 

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Landing Craft Infantry, Large, LCI (L),
unloading troops at Kissing Point
(284Kbytes)

 

LST's unloading area at Kissing Point, Townsville

 

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Troops and equipment being unloaded from
Landing Craft Infantry, Large, LCI (L) at Kissing Point

 


Photo: Peter Dunn

The same location today. Quite a different view!

 

The 16,000 ton transport, USS President Jackson, was involved in amphibious exercises in Cleveland Bay off Townsville, in north Queensland in 1943. This involved LCVP's and LCM's and some landings on the beach at The Strand on Townsville's beautiful seafront. The exercises included loading at least one 155mm gun onto an LCM from the beach on The Strand.

Photos # NH 82763 LCVP's from USS President Jackson during exercises off Townsville in
1943. In the background at the right of the photo you can see the breakwater wall of the
harbour entrance and Magnetic Island can be seen in the distance at the left of the photo.

 

Photo # NH 82765 LCVP's from USS President Jackson practice
landings on the beach on The Strand in Townsville in 1943. Kissing
Point can be seen at the right of this photograph.

 

Photo # NH 82768 Loading a 155mm gun on an LCM from USS President
Jackson on the beach on The Strand in Townsville in 1943

 

NavSourve Online: Amphibious Photo Archive LST-334

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I'd like to thank Gary Priolo from Navsource Naval History for his assistance with this home page, particularly with technical history of LST-334 and the photo on 1 Jan 1943 of LST-334 in Newport News, VA, USA.

Richard A Clark from Springfield Mo. 65619 served on the L.S.T. 334

 

REFERENCE BOOK

"The History of Townsville Harbour 1864 - 1979"
By H.J. Taylor

"Townsville at War 1942"
By Darryl McIntyre

 

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Copyright

 Peter Dunn 2003

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This page first produced 22 October 2000

This page last updated 11 July 2004