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The first ship to land aircraft at Townsville Harbour was the "USS Copahee". It unloaded 22 P-40 Warhawks. They were towed along the front of No. 4 Shed by tow motors. The "Verandah" or outloading section of No. 4 shed had been removed to allow this to happen.

The Warhawks were then towed down Perkins Street and across Sandy Crossing near Railway Estate headed for Garbutt airfield. Most aircraft arrived on converted Liberty Ships and were unloaded at No. 5 Crane berth. Over a period, numerous P-40 Warhawks and P-38 Lightnings were towed along Perkins Street.

"USS Copahee" moored starboard side to the Eastern Breakwater Pier, Berth No. 5 on 26 September 1943 and began unloading the following aircraft:-

45   A-20 Havocs
 2    P-47 Thunderbolts
 8    P-40 Warhawks


Townsville Harbour Board


The Defence of Townsville Harbour


"Z" Force Commandos Raid Townsville Harbour



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


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This page first produced 21 October 2000

This page last updated 08 December 2017