Oral Histories

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Oral Histories

Bill Harned Bob Barber Bobby Waldron
Norbert Muench Carl Bowman Carl Olsen
Clyde Robbins David Webb Deece Thompson
Dick Schmidtman Don Elliott Dutch Houtsma
George Miller Glenn Rollins Hank Kniskern
Harold "Gus" Land Harold Wood Jack Hayes
James Palmer Jimmy Alger Joanna Collins
Joe Doebler John Day John "Muddy" Waters
John Oren Julian Johansen Linda Johansen
Merlin Oneill Michelle Fitzpatrick Ned Sprow
Owen Siler Paul Breed Paul Yost
Pete Colmar Pete Prindle Red Wagner
Ric Cueroni Stew Graham Tamara Goodwin
Tom Midtlyng Warren Mitchell  
     
     

The followig files are also pdf but will be retrieved from the USCG Historian site

 

Joseph Etienne, who during his 30-year Coast Guard career served on Prohibition enforcement aboard CGC Champlain, as a surfman at a lifeboat station, participated in the invasion of Guadalcanal (he was a shipmate of Douglas Munro aboard the USS Hunter Liggett), and post war assignments in aids to navigation where he got to know Arnold Palmer.

Seaman 2/c John Cullen was the Coast Guardsman on beach patrol on Long Island who came across a team of Nazi saboteurs who had just landed from a U-boat.

Horst Boettge, a German merchant marine veteran who served aboard the Horst Wessel (nowEagle) recounts what life was like aboard the venerable sail-training vessel during the war.

Pat Latorra a gunners' mate who served aboard cutters on escort-of-convoy operations on the Greenland Patrol aboard CGC Algonquin and later in the Caribbean aboard CGC Active.

One Among Many: The Memoirs of BM2 Douglas M. Pierpont, BM2 Pierpont's exciting illustrated memoir of his service in the Coast Guard through World War II and after.  He enlisted prior to Pearl Harbor and saw action as a coxswain assigned to the Boat Division aboard USS Leonard Wood–he participated in the invasions of North Africa, Sicily and then landings throughout the Pacific Theatre.  After the war he served in Alaska aboard USCGC Bittersweet and Unalga.

The oral history of Radioman First Class Glen Boles, who served as a radio operator during the war.  RM1c Boles had spent time in Hollywood and on Broadway as an actor before joining the Coast Guard after the attack on Pearl Harbor.  After attending basic training in Manhattan, he went through training as a radio operator in Atlantic City before volunteering for duty at a radio-monitoring station in Brazil.   Here they intercepted German radio messages to their South American agents.  RM1c Boles also includes information of his life after the war.

The oral history of Chief Damage Controlman Clyde Allen USCG (Ret.). Chief Allen served during World War II and retired from active duty in 1965.  He had a variety of duty posts during his Coast Guard career, including the service with the Beach Patrol, the troop transports USSGeneral Hugh L. Scott and the USS General H. F. Hodges, ocean station duty aboard theMinnetonka, LORAN construction duty aboard the Kukui, a tour aboard the buoy tenderSweetbrier in Alaska, and patrol duty aboard the Morris.  He is the father of the Commandant of the Coast Guard, Admiral Thad Allen, USCG.

"Tales of an Old Sea Dog" A series of fascinating and informative autobiographical articles written by Captain C. William "Bill" Bailey about his distinguished 30-year career in the Coast Guard, from World War II through 1973!  He commanded a total of nine cutters, including 5 buoy tenders and the Eastwind, Coos Bay and Chase.

John Bach: discusses his service in the Coast Guard as a sonarman during World War II. As a sonarman Bach relates information about sonar technology as well as imparts information relating to military life. He recounts training at Curtis Bay (Maryland) and sonar school (Key West, Florida) including the development of new training courses, creation of insignia, shipboard equipment shortages, and other difficulties incurred while expanding the military. Serving aboard the [USS] Thetis, [CG] a patrol boat that escorted convoys along the East Coast, he relates his shipboard role, coastal encounters with German submarines, and the basic nature of the sonar technology.

Kelly Clifton joined the Coast Guard at the end of World War II and, after attending radar school, was assigned to the tender Walnut where he trained as a QM striker.  He saw ATON duty and supplied Loran stations, and was injured during one beaching.  He also survived a tsunami in Hawaii in 1946 and helped recover bodies.

Radioman First Class George C. Larsen's memoir of service & surviving the attack on Pearl Harbor.  Larsen lived through the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor while serving at a radio monitoring station.  He had served on the Taney, and shortly after the attack was transferred to the Kukui, and while aboard he took part in the "liberation" of Niihau Island which had been "taken" by a downed Japanese pilot.  He then saw service aboard the Tiger.

"A Radioman in the U.S. Coast Guard" by Chief Radioman Michael Chartuk. MC Chartuk served as a radio intercept operator during World War II in a little-known Coast Guard operation to intercept coded Nazi radio messages.  He served first at a radio monitoring station at Southmpton, New York and then established a radio monitoring station in the Dominican Republic.

The memoir of Chief Warrant Officer Fred Mann, USCG (Ret.). Mr. Mann enlisted in the Coast Guard in 1939 and retired in 1971 after 32 years of continuous service.  During his career, which began aboard the old cutter Saranac, he served aboard Navy transports, where he saw considerable action at Guadalcanal, earning a Silver Star for heroism in combat in that early amphibious assault.  After the war he served on a ocean station weather patrol, commanded patrol craft, saw service aboard numerous buoy tenders (and commanding one).  He also had duty at many shore stations around the country.

Radarman Second Class Collingwood Harris. served aboard the Coast Guard-manned destroyer escort USS Peterson during World War II and saw action in the convoy battles of the North Atlantic, including the loss of the Coast Guard-manned USSLeopold and the sinking of the U-550!

Commander Carleton Skinner's memoir  the Coast Guard officer who commanded the first integrated ship in the U.S. fleet, the USS Sea Cloud. This important memoir details the history of integration in the Coast Guard by the officer responsible for championing and overseeing its implementation

Robert Resnick tells of the Coast Guard's role in the raising of the flag on Mount Suribachi at Iwo Jima.

Invasion of Iwo Jima diary: Coast Guard veteran Gunner's Mate First Class Robert Mullinswrote a detailed diary during the bloody assault on Iwo Jima in 1945.  GM1 Mullins served aboard a Coast Guard-manned LST

Commander Ray Evans' narrative entitled "The Gold Dust Twins" regarding the loss of his friend and shipmate Douglas Munro.

Captain David W. Sinclair's memoir has provided us with his memoir of his Coast Guard career that stretched from 1935 through his retirement in 1969.  He describes life as a cadet in the Coast Guard Academy's Class of 1939, life aboard a Treasury Class cutter just prior to the U.S. entering World War II, his service in World War II, including the Greenland Patrol, flight training, and aerial patrol duties.  He then goes on to describe his post-war Coast Guard career.

An illustrated first-hand account of the Magic Carpet operation written by Seaman First Class Wilbur Selbrede 
in 1945.  He served aboard the Joseph T. Dickman as a member of a special amphibious beach party and saw action at Okinawa and then participated in the "Operation Magic Carpet" voyages that returned former Allied Prisoners of War, some who were the survivors of the Bataan Death March in the Philippines in 1942 as well as those who had been captured on Wake Island in December, 1941, back home from Japanese P.O.W. camps.

An account of the relief of convoy SC-177 that was taken from an unpublished book, Bloody Winter — The Lighter Side, by the late Captain John M. "Muddy" Waters, Jr., the first President of the Ingham Association.

Illustrated memoir of Signalman Third Class William L. Sprague who describes his World War II experiences, including  Basic Training at Curtis Bay, Maryland, service in the Captain of the Port Office and on a patrol boat in Newport, Rhode Island, travel across the U.S. by train and plane, Signalman School in California, and service on board the USS Corpus Christi in the Pacific Theatre.

The oral history of World War II Coast Guard veteran Marvin Perrett who was a coxswain of a landing craft assigned to the USS Bayfield; he participated in the invasions of Normandy (D-Day!), Iwo Jima, and Okinawa.

Illustrated memoir of Coast Guard veteran Norman Taylor who describes his World War II experiences, including  Basic Training at the Manhattan Beach Training Station, service on the Beach Patrol, "EM" School, and service on the USS FS-396 in the Pacific Theatre

"My Life in the Coast Guard:" Captain David Oliver, USCG (Ret.): who describes his experience with World War II convoy operations, aviation activities, helicopter development, and operations in Alaska.

The oral history of World War II Coast Guard aviator Bernard A. Bailey.

Quartermaster Third Class Walter Nasmyth describes his experiences on the USS LST-19in the Pacific Theatre.

"The Story of a World War II Frigate: The USS Sandusky PF-54, a first-hand narrative written by former Vice-Commandant Vice Admiral Thomas Sargent, who commanded Sanduskyduring World War II.

"The First Year in the Life of a Patrol Craft: USS PC-469 a first-hand narrative written by former Vice-Commandant VADM Thomas Sargent, who commanded PC-469 during World War II.

Photographer's Mate Third Class Seth Shepard's article on his experiences while on board the Coast Guard-manned LCI(L)-92 on 6 June 1944 at the invasion of Nazi-occupied France at Normandy.

 

A Letter Home An uncensored letter written by a Coast Guard veteran describing Coast Guard-manned LCI(L) Flotilla 4/10's operations prior to D-Day.

Death of a Wooden Shoe: Life on the Coast Guard's Greenland Patrol in World War II.

Boatswain's Mate Third Class Thomas Mullings' Oral History: A crewman on board the Alexander Hamilton, describes his Coast Guard career, including surviving the sinking of the U.S.S. Alexander Hamilton, C.G. on 30 January 1942.

Joseph Matte, III's Personal Journal: written while on board the USS Ingham, CG, on convoy duty in the North Atlantic from 16 February 1942 to 19 April, 1943.

Quartermaster First Class Hank Roger USCG (Ret.) tells the story of the Coast Guard-manned Army FS-184 in action in the Pacific.

Seaman First Class Raymond O'Malley' Oral History: Raymond O'Malley was one of twoEscanaba survivors.

Cliff Beasley recounts a few humorous stories regarding OCS training, the atomic bomb, and duty aboard an Army "FS" vessel in the Pacific.

US Coast Guard Aviation History 1950s Victor E Rouland (AD2 1952-1956)

The Coast Guard and Operation Iraqi Freedom

Captain Paul A. Lutz commanding USCGC Sherman, describes his cutter's 1970 Vietnam cruise.

 

 

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