S/SGT. JACK MAIDLOW, JR,
IN AUSTRALIA DURING WWII
S/Sgt. John S. Maidlow, Jr. 15081737, enlisted in the US Army Air Corps on 13 September 1941. He was initially attached to Air Corps Training Command carrying out Teletype maintenance.
In January 1942 he was attached to Headquarters Squadron, 8th Fighter Group at Mitchell Field, USA. He travelled to Brisbane, Australia on board the USAT Maui which left San Francisco on 13 February 1942. Jack remembers he had oxtail soup and crackers in the morning and oxtails and crackers in the afternoon on board USAT Maui.
USAT Maui arrived in Brisbane on 5 March 1942 as part of Convoy 2033 escorted by USS New Orleans. Other ships in Convoy 2033 that continued on to Australia were Perida, Pennant, Cape Alava, Cape Flattery and Torrens.
After a short stay at Camp Ascot, near Eagle Farm Airfield, Jack Maidlow's group established their quarters in a tent camp near Archerfield Airfield, adjacent to a farmhouse across the other side of Beatty Road. Whilst at Archerfield Airfield Jack helped to install the first Teletype circuit from Base Section Three Headquarters at Somerville House girls school in Brisbane to Melbourne where General Douglas MacArthur had established his General Headquarters Southwest Pacific Area (SWPA) in March 1942.
Jack relocated to Antill Plains Airfield in north Queensland outside of Townsville in August 1942 and then moved to Milne Bay in New Guinea in September 1942. He then returned to Archerfield Airfield in Brisbane in December 1942 to help develop the Radio Teletype Control System.
He was admitted to the 166th Station Hospital at Southport School on 25 December 1942.
In the first half of 1943 Jack Maidlow was Per Diem renting a room from Mrs. Greenwell at Barkley Street, Tarragindi, whilst he was working with the Crammond Radio Manufacturing Company at 8 Queen Street in the city.
In the second half of 1943 he was assigned to the 419th Signal Company Aviation installing Radio Teletype circuits at Archerfield Airfield. The 419th Signal Company Aviation looked after the radio station diagonally across from Archerfield Airfield just west of Camp Muckley. They used BC-339K transmitters at this site. A Signal Corps photo shows a Sgt. C.G. Huey and Sgt. S.M. Halfinger working on the BC-339K transmitters at Archerfield. Jack Maidlow's quarters at this time were at Camp Muckley not far from Archerfield Airfield.
The Radio site near Archerfield
be seen to the west of Camp Muckley
In early 1944 Jack was assigned on temporary duty with the Teletype Maintenance unit commanded by Captain Mark T. Muller, who was in charge of USASOS Teletype Room, Signal Office, GHQ SWPA.
Whilst attached to Captain Muller's unit Jack often visited General Douglas MacArthur's General Headquarters Southwest Pacific Area in the AMP building. He sat in General MacArthur's chair once whilst working with the Sigaba machine held in a safe (or vault) located not far from General MacArthur's office.
In September 1944 Jack was assigned to 42nd General Hospital, at Holland Park as a "Guinea Pig" in a study on Atebrin tablets.
During his time in Brisbane, S/Sgt. Jack Maidlow spent time in the following hospitals:-
S/Sgt. Jack Maidlow returned to the USA in November 1944.
I'd like to thank Jack Maidlow for his assistance with this web page. Jack was 96 years old when he contacted me in October 2016.
Can anyone help me with more information?
© Peter Dunn 2015
This page first produced 15 October 2016
This page last updated 18 October 2016