The Fighting Coast Guard
America's Maritime Guardians at War in the Twentieth Century, with foreword by Admiral Thad Allen, USCG (ret.)
Sales Date: December 20, 2022
- Published: December 2022
- Published: December 2022
This collection of essays, written by some of the foremost historians in the field of Coast Guard history, highlights the wartime roles played by the United States’ oldest federal maritime service, from its inception through the last decade of the twentieth century. The Fighting Coast Guard features three distinct sections: “Beginnings,” which includes a short overview of the US Revenue Cutter Service (the USCG’s primary forerunner, established in 1790) and two chapters on World War I; “Conflagration,” the role of the USCG during the World War II era; and “The Cold War and Beyond,” an assessment of the Coast Guard’s participation in the Korean Conflict, the Vietnam War, and the Persian Gulf War of 1991. The Fighting Coast Guard is a significant contribution to the limited historiography of the Coast Guard and a critical analysis of various wartime roles undertaken by the Coast Guard during America’s twentieth-century conflicts.
Because the Coast Guard operated as part of the Department of the Navy during the two world wars, its service and history is often overlooked or enveloped by the larger service, while the USCG’s limited participation in cold and hot wars since 1945 is often ignored altogether. This anthology provides readers with a solid overview while highlighting some of the service’s most important contributions as a combatant force.
This definitive study of the role of the US Coast Guard in wartime, from its modern inception in 1915 through the end of the twentieth century, is long overdue and will shed new light on America’s smallest military service.
“The history of America’s Coast Guard is filled with more heroes and heroism than most of the navies that ever sailed the seven seas. Snell’s work is informative, groundbreaking, and inspiring.”—James Jay Carafano, vice president, Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy
“There is no comparable anthology on the Coast Guard at war. The combination of general descriptive essays and more focused chapters on specific ships or campaigns make for intriguing and informative reading. Anyone who reads this book will come away with a broad knowledge of Coast Guard history and better appreciation for its activities during wartime.”—Robert Wooster, retired Regents Professor of History at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi and author of The United States Army and the Making of America: From Confederation to Empire, 1775–1903
Foreword, Admiral Thad Allen, Twenty-third Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard
Preface and Acknowledgments
Introduction: “In Spite of Foeman’s Might. . . Fr Showing How to Fight”: A Chronological Overview of the U.S. Coast Guard as a Combatant Force, 1917-19941, Mark A. Snell
Part I: Beginnings
Prologue: A Historical Overview of the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service, 1798-1898, C. Douglas Kroll
1. “The Highest Traditions of Any Service"”: Thje U.S. Coast Guard’s Attempt to Save the British Collier Wellington, Robert Browning Jr.
2. The Loss of the USS Tampa at Its Lasting Legacy, Nora Chidlow and Arlyn Danielson
Part II: Conflagration
3. “Remember Pearl harbor”: The World War II Odyssey of the USCG Cutter Taney, Paul Cora
4. “Bringing Home the Bacon”: The U.S. Coast Guard’s Participation in the Atlantic Convoy Operations of World War II, Scott Price
5. Ice, Icebergs, and War: The U.S. Coast Guard in Greenland during World War II, Dennis L. Noble
6. Naval Operating Base Cactus and Coast Guard Operations in the Battle for Guadalcanal, William Thiesen
7. The Coast Guard and the Pacific War, Robert Browning Jr.
8. “The Mission . . . Is to Put the Army on the Beach” USCG Flotilla 10 at Bloody Omaha, Mark A. Snell
9. The Auxiliary at War, 1941-1945, John A. Tilley
Part III: The Cold War and Beyond
10. The Forgotten Service during the Forgotten War: The U.S. Coast Guard’s Role in the Korean Conflict, Scott Price
11. Patrolling Inshore Waters from Demilitarized Zone to Qui Nhon, 1967-1968: A Memore, Paul C. Scotti
12. To Patrol and Interdict: The USCG Cutter Taney in Operation Market Time, 1967-1970, Paul Cora
13. “WarTime Usefulness . . . Is a By-Product of the Coast Guard” The Origins and Early History of the Coast Guard Reserve’ Port Security Units, John R. Olson
Epilogue: “He Gallantly Gave Up His Life”: Remembering and Memorializing the U.S. Coast Guard’s Wartime Service, Darin Lenz
Glossary of Nautical, Naval, and Coast Guard Terms and Acronyms
Appendix: U.S. Vessel and Aircraft Designations