Register of the John Sidney McCain papers

Finding aid prepared by Aparna Mukherjee
Hoover Institution Library and Archives
© 2008
434 Galvez Mall
Stanford University
Stanford, CA 94305-6003

Title: John Sidney McCain papers
Date (inclusive): 1933-1945
Collection Number: 82114
Contributing Institution: Hoover Institution Library and Archives
Language of Material: English
Physical Description: 5 manuscript boxes (2.0 Linear Feet)
Abstract: The John Sidney McCain papers consist of correspondence, reports, dispatches, orders, and photographs relating to American naval aviation and to naval operations in the Pacific Theater during World War II. John Sidney McCain was an admiral in the United States Navy and a Commander of the Second Carrier Task Force in World War II. He was awarded Navy Cross for his heroism and the Distinguished Service Medal with two Gold Stars for exceptional service
Creator: McCain, John Sidney, 1884-1945
Physical Location: Hoover Institution Library & Archives


The collection is open for research; materials must be requested in advance via our reservation system. If there are audiovisual or digital media material in the collection, they must be reformatted before providing access.


For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Library & Archives

Acquisition Information

Acquired by the Hoover Institution Library & Archives in 1982

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], John Sidney McCain Papers, [Box no., Folder no. or title], Hoover Institution Library & Archives

Biographical Note

1884 August 9 Born, Carroll County, Mississippi
1901-1902 Student, University of Mississippi
1906 Commander, ensign, U.S. Navy
  Graduate, U.S. Naval Academy,
1920 Graduate, Naval War College
1935-1936 Flight instructor (naval aviator), Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida
1937-1939 Commanded the aircraft carrier Ranger (CV-4)
1939 Served as Commander of Air Forces for Western Sea Frontier and the South Pacific Force
1941 Promoted through grades to Rear Admiral
1943 July Promoted to Vice Admiral
1942 September - 1943 July Chief, Bureau of Aeronautics
1943 July Deputy Chief, naval operations for air, Commander, Carrier Task Force
1943 August Rose to the rank of Vice Admiral as Deputy Chief of Naval Operations
1944 Earned the Navy Cross
  Returned to the Pacific Theater as Commander of the Fast Carrier Task Force
1945 Awarded the Distinguished Service Medal with two Gold Stars for outstanding performance as an air planner and carrier task force commander and awarded the Navy Cross for gallantry
1945 September 2 Witnessed the Japanese surrender on board U.S.S. Missouri
1945 September 6 Posthumously appointed Admiral effective that date
  Died, Carrollton, Mississippi

Scope and Content of Collection

The papers of John Sidney McCain, acquired by the Hoover Institution Library & Archives in 1982, deal with United States naval aviation and naval operations in the Pacific theater during Second World War.
The papers have been organized into three series. Correspondence includes letters, of a both official and personal nature, with names of some prominent correspondents mentioned and arranged chronologically. The United States Navy File covers air distribution lists, dispatches, orders, and operating procedures relating to American naval operations particularly in the Pacific region. Last but not the least are the photographs divided by the creator generally into groups including the date, the location, and the names of photographers.
The original order of the McCain papers has been maintained and security- classified documents have been pulled out of the collection.


The collection is organized into 3 series: Correspondence, United States Navy File, and Photographs

Subjects and Indexing Terms

World War, 1939-1945 -- Aerial operations
World War, 1939-1945 -- Naval operations
United States. Navy
United States. Navy. Carrier Task Force, Second


Correspondence 1933-1945

Scope and Contents note

Personal and official correspondence sent to and received from John Sidney McCain, arranged chronologically. Includes correspondence with C. M. Austin, M. M. Dupre, L. B. Porterfield, John N. Towers, and others. Also includes memoranda and related materials.
box 1, folder 1


box 1, folder 2


Scope and Contents note

Includes correspondence with C. M. Austin, M. M. Dupre, L. B. Porterfield, W. C. I. Stiles, Zane Thompson, Jr., M. J. Torlinski, and others
box 1, folder 3


Scope and Contents note

Letters to John H. Towers. See also folder 7
box 1, folder 4


Scope and Contents note

Includes correspondence with Robert L. Ghormley, H. F. Leary, G. L. Roberts, and John H. Towers
box 1, folder 5

1941 January-December

box 1, folder 6

1942 April-September

box 1, folder 7

1942 January - 1945 August

Scope and Contents note

Includes correspondence with John H. Towers. See also folder 3
box 1, folder 8

1943 October - 1944 August


United States Navy File 1941-1945

Scope and Contents note

Correspondence, dispatches, Fast Carrier Task Force instructions, operating orders and procedures, and war diary, arranged alphabetically and then in chronological order
box 1, folder 9

Action reports 1944 October 29


Aircraft Scouting Force

box 1, folder 10

1939 June - 1941 November

box 1, folder 11

1941 January - 1942 April


Subject file

General note

See also Photographs
box 2, folder 1

Dispatches REF Storm 1944 December 15-22

box 2, folder 2-3

Operation orders I-44 and 2-44 1944 August-September and undated

Scope and Contents note

Includes standard operating procedures, undated
box 2, folder 4

Task Force 38 operations 1945 January 25

box 2, folder 5

War diary - Roster of daily activities 1944 August 18 - 1945 July 31

Scope and Contents note

Includes 12 photographic prints taken in Formosa, Japan, Philippines, and Russia

United States Pacific Fleet

box 3, folder 1

Fast Carrier Task Force instructions 1944-1945 and undated


Second Carrier Task Force and Commander Task Force 38

box 3, folder 2


Scope and Contents note

Air support plan in support of bombardment groups, distribution list, strategic targets - Tokyo, and map. Operation orders 2-45 and 3-45
box 3, folder 3

1944 February - 1945 June

Scope and Contents note

Thirty Eight, operation order 2-45
box 3, folder 4

1944 October 2-29

Scope and Contents note

Commander Task Group 38 Point One Action Report. Includes 6 photographic prints taken in the Philippine Islands
box 3, folder 5

1944 November 13 - 1945 January 1

Scope and Contents note

Communication plan numbers 2-45
box 3, folder 6

1945 July 2-August 15

Scope and Contents note

Includes 1 photographic print taken in Tokyo area
box 4, folder 1

1944 December - 1945 August 22

Scope and Contents note

Commander Task Force 38 Action Report. Includes 2 photographic prints, 1944 December 5, taken in Japan
box 4, folder 2

1945 June 7

Scope and Contents note

Includes 11 photographic prints generally of individuals taken in the Pacific area
box 4, folder 3-4

1945 July-August

Scope and Contents note

Includes copies of photographs

Photographs 1939-1946

Scope and Contents note

Photographs of bombing of Japan, Luzon Islands, Manila Bay, Second Carrier Task Force, shipping damage, Sibuyan sea battle, and miscellaneous prints, arranged chronologically. Names of photographers, often names of ships, have been mentioned whenever available
box 4, folder 5

Shipping damage, 31 photographic prints 1944 January 3-December 14 and undated

Scope and Contents note

Photo by U.S.S. Cowpens, U.S.S. Hornet, U.S.S Franklin, U.S.S Hancock, U.S.S. Ticonderoga, and U.S.S. WASP, U.S. Navy
box 4, folder 6

Second Carrier Task Force 1944 January 3 - 1946 October 10 and undated

Scope and Contents note

25 prints photographed by U.S.S. Cowpens, U.S.S. Essex, U.S. Navy
box 4, folder 7

Bombing of Japan depicted in 36 prints 1944 October 10 - 1946 October 16 and undated

Scope and Contents note

Includes greetings sent to John S. McCain on his birthday and anniversary, 1945, August 9
box 5, folder 1

Sibuyan sea battle depicted in 3 prints 1944 October 24

Scope and Contents note

photographed by U.S.S. Franklin, U.S. Navy
box 5, folder 2

Luzon Islands, Philippine Islands 1944 October 25 - 1945 January 12

Scope and Contents note

photos by U.S.S. Franklin and U.S.S. Ticonderoga, U.S. Navy. 16 prints
box 5, folder 3

Manila Bay depicted in 6 prints 1944 November 5

box 5, folder 4

Miscellaneous prints 1944 January - 1945 September

Scope and Contents note

photographed by U.S.S. Navy and U.S.S. Shangrila, U.S. Navy. 28 prints