JAPANESE AGENTS ON IRON ISLAND
AT BROAD SOUND IN CENTRAL QUEENSLAND

For a number of years before the war, Japanese experts visited Queensland to map our mining fields. They were particularly interested in the Mount Isa and Cloncurry areas.

The Japanese had a plan to send raw metals to Normington and then on to Japan. They were also very interested in Iron Island, a rich deposit in Broad Sound about 100 miles from Rockhampton in central Queensland. Several Japanese had actually established a camp on the island and installed some sophisticated radio communications equipment and a very comprehensive library. It contained:-

- mining fields
- statistics of mine outputs
- stock exchange reports
- financial journals dealing with mining and pastoral companies
- Australian travel books
- railway guides
- dozens of maps
- complete set of charts of the Great Barrier Reef
- comprehensive set of photographs of Queensland scenes and industry
- pedigrees of many prize animals from stud farms
-  reports of industrial disputes
- details of the morale of the people of Queensland
- list of exports

Some of the maps had flat areas marked on coastal plains as possible landing areas for Japanese aircraft.

Several Japanese agents in this camp on Iron Island were arrested by Australian authorities.

 

REFERENCES

"Shadows Dancing - Japanese Espionage against the West 1939 - 1945"
by Tony Matthews

 

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This page first produced 14 April 2002

This page last updated 14 January 2015