1 Reply Latest reply on Dec 21, 2021 10:47 AM by Rachael Salyer

    Seeking USN & USCG documents from 1942

    painted_ocean Newbie

      I am researching several ships that were sunk by German U-boats off New Jersey in 1942. The documents I am seeking are in bold below. What I would like to know is:

      1.) where each of these are located

      2.) how I can obtain copies

       

      For reasons unknown, I have struggled to find any of the below items in "War Beneath the Waves: Researching Anti-Submarine Incident Reports during World War II".

       

      I understand that this is a significant amount of documentation, and any assistance in this endeavor is enormously appreciated.

       

      • RG 24(?) - USS PE 56 / Eagle 56 logs - Feb 1942
      • RG 38 - Records of the 10th Fleet in the Records of the Chief of Naval Operations / Record Group 38
        • Varanger (sunk Jan 1942 off NJ): survivor interviews
        • India Arrow (sunk Jan 1942 off NJ): survivor interviews + any other USN/USCG records of sinking & aftermath
        • RP Resor (sunk Feb 1942 off NJ): survivor interviews + any other USN/USCG records of sinking & aftermath
        • Gulftrade (sunk Mar 1942 off NJ): survivor interviews + any other USN/USCG records of sinking & aftermath
        • Tolten (sunk Mar 1942 off NJ): survivor interviews + any other USN/USCG records of sinking & aftermath
      • RG 52(?) - "Summaries of Statements by Survivors"
        • Same as above: Varanger, India Arrow, RP Resor, Gulftrade, Tolten
      • RG 26.5.11 - "Records relating to merchant marine safety"
        • Survivor interviews from: Varanger, India Arrow, RP Resor, Gulftrade, Tolten

        • Letters to next-of-kin, USCG War Action Casualty Reports, consular reports, affidavits, survivor statements pertaining to: Varanger, India Arrow, RP Resor, Gulftrade, Tolten, Plow City, Rio Tercero, John R. Williams
      • RG 26.5.10 - Any action reports/other records pertaining to the sinking of the Persephone off NJ in May 1942
      • 26.5.11 - Any photos related to the following ships: Varanger, India Arrow, RP Resor, Gulftrade, Tolten, Plow City, Rio Tercero, John R. Williams
      • RG 26 - USCGC Antietam (WSC-128) log for 9-14 March 1942
        • Should be located in "USCG Logs: 1942 Series" RG 26, Entry 159D, Box 19
      • RG 26.4.2 - Logs/other records pertaining to the following Coast Guard stations for the following dates:
        • Barnegat CG Station (26-28 Feb, 10 Mar, 25 May)
        • Cape May CG Station (26-28 Feb, 10 Mar, 25 May)
        • Manasquan Inlet CG station (26-28 Feb, 10 Mar)
        • Shark River CG Station (26-28 Feb, 10 Mar)
      • RG 313.5.2 - War diaries of ZP Squadron 12 (based at Lakehurst, NJ) and Fleet Airship Wing 1, time frame 24-26 May 1942
        • May be located in "Records of Commander Naval Air Force, Atlantic Fleet, 1942-61"
      • RG 313.10 - Coastal charts showing lightships & lighted buoys along DE, NJ, NY coast, Jan-June 1942
      • RG 313.10 - Coastal charts showing depths/underwater topography along DE, NJ, NY coast, Jan-June 1942
      • RG 26.5.6 -Schematics/design documents for USCGC Antietam (WSC-128, later renamed Bedloe)
      • RG 26.12 - Photographs of USCGC Antietam/Bedloe
      • RG 19 -"USS Jacob Jones File Drawings": National Archives Identifier 175669479 / Record Group 19 > Microfilm of Ship Engineering Drawings, 1945-1955 > USS JACOB JONES DD-130".
        • Re: Seeking USN & USCG documents from 1942
          Rachael Salyer Ranger

          Dear Mr. Nelson,

           

          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!

           

          We searched the National Archives Catalog and located the Logbooks of U.S. Navy Ships and Stations, 1941-1983 in the Records of the Bureau of Naval Personnel (Record Group 24) that include the deck logs of the USS Eagle 56 (PE-56) for January 1941-March 1945. For more information about the non-digitized deck logs, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) via email at archives2reference@nara.gov.

           

          We also located the series World War II War Diaries, Other Operational Records and Histories, ca. 1/1/1942 - ca. 6/1/1946 in the Records of the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations (Record Group 38) that contains war diaries and reports concerning the activities of the USS Eagle 56 during World War II. These records have been digitized and may be viewed online using the Catalog.  Please keep in mind that the Catalog does not always list files in chronological order. We located an additional 40 file units and 1 item related to survivor interviews and 3 series and 95 file units related to survivor statements in Record Group 38 that might include some records related to your research as well. In addition, we identified 12 series related to war diaries and the Atlantic in the 1940s in the Records of Naval Operating Forces (Record Group 313). These records have not been digitized. For access to and information about these and similar records, please contact RDT2.

           

          Next, we located the series Logbooks, 1942 -1947 in the Records of the U.S. Coast Guard (Record Group 26) that may include the logbooks of the Coast Guard vessels or stations you are researching. Some of these logbooks have been digitized and may be viewed online using the National Archives Catalog. For more information about the non-digitized logbooks, please contact the National Archives at Washington, DC - Textual Reference (RDT1) via email at archives1reference@nara.gov. We also located the series Records Relating to Merchant Vessel Casualties During World War II, 1941-1950 in Record Group 26 that might include other relevant information. These records have not been digitized. Please contact RDT1 for assistance with these and other Coast Guard records.

           

          Additionally, some of the charts and photographs you are interested in may be interspersed with other textual records. You may also contact the National Archives at College Park - Still Pictures (RDSS) at stillpix@nara.gov and the National Archives at College Park - Cartographic (RDSC) at carto@nara.gov  for additional assistance with those records. Please include as much information as possible in your inquiry, such as names of vessels or stations, locations, and dates of interest.

           

          We also suggest that you use The National Archives Catalog to search for additional potentially relevant records. The Advanced Search feature lets you narrow your search results by Record Group, date, type of record, and more. Some of the records may be digitized and others may not. Please note that many of the references you included in your original request are from the Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States, which provides an overview of NARA’s holdings but does not always indicate specific series of records. If you identify more records of interest using the Catalog, you may contact the NARA reference unit listed in each Catalog description for assistance with those records.

           

          Due to the continued impact of COVID-19, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgment as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDT2, RDT1, RDSS, RDSC, or other NARA reference unit.  We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience as we balance mission-critical work and the safety of our staff during the pandemic. Please check NARA’s web page about COVID-19 updates for the latest information.

           

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