2 Replies Latest reply on Jul 2, 2021 12:26 PM by Elliot Schneider

    Seeking father's merchant marine records

    Mike Clement Newbie

      My father served on merchant ships out of the US from 1945 to around 1953. His number was 504599, how can I find the ships he served on? In particular which ship he arrived in Australia on?

      Thank you


        • Re: Seeking father's merchant marine records
          Josette Schluter Adventurer

          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub.


          The Merchant Marine Personnel and Licensing Records dated before 1968 in the Records of the U.S. Coast Guard (Record Group 26) are in the custody of the National Archives at St. Louis (RL-SL). Please contact RL-SL via email at stl.archives@nara.govInclude the name, date of birth, dates of service, "Z" number, and date of death, if known, in your email.


          Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RL-SL. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.


          We hope that this information was helpful.


          • Re: Seeking father's merchant marine records
            Elliot Schneider Ranger



            Please use the following information below. https://www.dco.uscg.mil/nmc/record_request/


            WWII Veteran Eligibility Requests


            United States Merchant Mariners who served in ocean going service during December 7, 1941, to December 31, 1946, are considered "active duty" under the provisions of Public Laws 95-202 and 105-368.  To determine eligibility for a Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, DD Form 214, or a Report of Casualty, DD Form 1300, a member must not only have served within the qualifying period, but also meet the following:

            Eligibility Criteria:

            1.Was a merchant marine serving as a crewmember of a vessel that was:

            • operated by the War Shipping Administration or the Office of Defense Transportation (or an agent of the Administration or Office);
            • operated in waters other than inland waters, the great Lakes, and other lakes, bays, and harbors of the United States;
            • under contract or charter to, or property of, the Government of the United States; and
            • served the Armed Forces.

            2.While serving, was licensed or otherwise documented for service as a crewmember of such a vessel by an officer or employee of the United States authorized to license or document the person for such service.

            Requests should be submitted using a DD Form 2168, Application for Discharge of Member or Survivor of Member of Group Certified to Have Performed Active Duty with the Armed Forces of the United States. You can save this form to your desktop then e-mail it as an attachment with all of your supporting documentation.

            In addition, Public Law 105-368, which applies only to service performed during the period of August 16, 1945 to December 31, 1946, requires that the Coast Guard collect a $30 processing fee for each application.  If qualified ocean going service was served and you wish to have this period certified, please mail a copy of the completed DD Form 2168 along with a check or money order made payable to the U.S. Treasury at the following address:

            Mailing Address:
            USCG ART/Others
            PO Box 979119
            St. Louis, MO 63197-9000

            Overnight Courier Address:
            U.S. Bank Government Lockbox
            1005 Convention Plaza
            Attn: Government Lockbox, 979119
            St. Louis, MO 63101