Croaker versus Tojo

This photo was taken in the summer of 1943 at the submarine building yards of the Electric Boat Company in New London/ Groton, CT.

The painted sign on the side of the crane shows a croaker fish chasing what appears to be a caricature of Japanese leader Tojo, hanged for crimes against humanity after the Japanese surrender. The croaker is the namesake of the Gato class submarine being built, USS Croaker. The boat was laid down April of 1943 and launched in December 1943. She compiled an outstanding war record in the Pacific, sailing on six war patrols against the Japanese.

After being de-commissioned and re-commissioned several times, she was finally struck from the US Navy list in 1971. You can tour the submarine at the Buffalo Naval Park.

[Image courtesy of Life Magazine.]

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Charles McCain

Charles McCain is a Washington DC based freelance journalist and novelist. He is the author of "An Honorable German," a World War Two naval epic. You can read more of his work on his website:

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