2 Replies Latest reply on Sep 16, 2021 1:15 PM by Stacy Aannestad

    How to find Coast Guard Reserves records for WWII

    Stacy Aannestad Wayfarer

      My grandfather was in the Coast Guard Reserves in World War II, and I'm wondering if there's a way to find any records associated with that. He served in Washington State.

        • Re: How to find Coast Guard Reserves records for WWII
          Rachael Salyer Pioneer

          Dear Ms. Aannestad,


          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


          If you have not done so already, we suggest that you request a copy of your grandfather’s Official Military Personnel File (OMPF). OMPFs and medical records of the personnel of the U.S. Coast Guard who were separated from service after 1897 and before April 1998 are located at NARA's National Personnel Records Center, (Military Personnel Records), 1 Archives Drive, St. Louis, MO  63138-1002.  To request these records, please mail a completed GSA Standard Form 180 to NPRC. Veterans and their next of kin also may use eVetRecs to request records. See eVetRecs Help for instructions. If there is any information requested that you do not know, you may leave it blank or provide estimates, however the more details you provide, the easier it will be for NPRC staff to locate the correct file. For more information see Official Military Personnel Files (OMPF), Archival Records Requests.


          We searched the National Archives Catalog and located the series Wartime Unit Histories, 1945-1946 in the Records of the U.S. Coast Guard (Record Group 26) that consists of narrative reports on the various activities and operations of Coast Guard offices in Oregon and Washington during World War II. These records have not been digitized. Please contact the National Archives at Seattle (RW-SE) at seattle.archives@nara.gov for access to and information about these and similar records.


          Next, we located 19 additional series related to Coast Guard reserves in Record Group 26 that may contain some relevant information. If you know the name of the vessel he served on or the shore installation where your grandfather served, for example, then the series Logbooks, 1942 -1947 in the Records of the U.S. Coast Guard (Record Group 26) may include some useful information. Some of these logs have been digitized and may be viewed online using the National Archives Catalog. For information about the non-digitized records, please contact the National Archives at Washington, DC - Textual Reference at archives1reference@nara.gov.


          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 RW-SE and RDT1. Also, NPRC will continue servicing requests ONLY associated with medical treatments, burials, homeless veterans seeking admittance to a homeless shelter, and those involving the VA Home Loan program. If your request is urgent, please see Emergency Requests and Deadlines. Please refrain from submitting non-emergency requests such as replacement medals, administrative corrections, or records research until NPRC returns to pre-COVID staffing levels.  Please check archives.gov/veterans for updates to the NPRC operating hours and status. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.


          Finally, we suggest that you contact the Coast Guard Museum or the U.S. Coast Guard Historian's Office for further assistance.


          We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your family research!