- Milne Bay
Inlet of the South Pacific Ocean, Papua New Guinea.Located at the southeastern end of the island of New Guinea, the bay is 30 mi (50 km) long and 6–8 mi (10–13 km) wide. A Spanish explorer charted the bay in 1606; it was named by the British for Adm. Alexander Milne in 1873. European interest in it increased during the 1889–99 gold rush. Samarai, an island in the China Strait, became a boomtown from which prospectors spread through the islands of Milne Bay and to the mainland. As a Japanese base of operations in World War II, Milne Bay was the scene of Japan's first major setback in 1942, and it served as an Allied base for the remainder of the war.
* * *easternmost inlet on the coast of the island of New Guinea, Papua New Guinea, southwestern Pacific Ocean. Milne Bay measures 30 miles (50 km) by 6–8 miles (10–13 km). The bay, which receives the Gumini River, has fertile south and west shores that support plantations. The north shore is steep and rugged. A small fishing industry harvests bêche-de-mer (sea cucumber) for export. The Spanish explorer Luis Vaez de Torres charted the bay in 1606. In 1873 the British navigator Capt. John Moresby named it for Adm. Alexander Milne. European interest in the area increased during the gold-rush years of 1889–99. Samarai, an island in the China Strait, became a boom town from which prospectors spread through the islands of Milne Bay and to the mainland. A base of Japanese operations early in World War II, the bay was the scene of Japan's first major setback of the war in a battle fought in August 1942 and was an Allied base for the duration of the war.
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