The Long Blue Line: Lighthouse Service during the Civil War

Throughout the Civil War and its aftermath, U.S. Lighthouse Service men and women fulfilled their mission as members of the long blue line by operating lighthouses all along the East and Gulf Coasts. Other services rendered by the Lighthouse Service included buoys, aids to navigation, buoy depots, lightships and lighthouse tenders.


The Long Blue Line: Gunboat Cutter E.A. Stevens—the Revenue Cutter Service’s experiment in modern naval technology (Part 2)

Learn more about the Coast Guard’s semi-submersible gunboat’s role in the American Civil War in Part 2 of the story.


The Long Blue Line: Gunboat Cutter E.A. Stevens—the Revenue Cutter Service’s experiment in modern naval technology (Part 1 of 2)

During an era when vessels were transitioning from wood and sails to iron and steam, the Coast Guard’s predecessor service, the Revenue Cutter Service, experimented with a new kind of technology to fight in the American Civil War – a semi-submersible gunboat.


Cutter Etheridge

In behalf of humanity

Another vessel has joined the ranks and earned the title “Coast Guard cutter.” However this isn’t just any cutter, it’s a fast response cutter. At 154-feet long, the ship has an impressive array of capabilities, including sustained speeds of more than 28 knots and an armament of a stabilized 25mm machine-gun mount and four, crew-served .50-caliber machine guns. But more impressive than its technology, more impressive than its features, is the cutter’s namesake – Richard Etheridge.


Haunted: Indian River Life-Saving Station

Last week Compass told the story of Point Lookout Lighthouse and the ghost stories surrounding the historic building. Today we bring you the story of the Indian River Life-Saving Station. Do you think it is haunted? Read on and decide […]


Haunted lighthouses: Point Lookout Lighthouse

Throughout the service’s history, stories of rescues at sea naturally evoked images of romance in hard times, but would anyone believe there are plenty of ghost stories associated with lighthouses and lifesaving stations? Read on as Coast Guard historian Nora […]


Capt. Faunce

Harriet Lane fires first naval shot of the Civil War

Written by William H. Thiesen, Coast Guard Atlantic Area Historian April 12th will mark the 150th anniversary of the start of the American Civil War. On that fateful day, the Coast Guard’s legacy service of the Revenue Cutter Service made […]


The origin of Memorial Day

For many Americans, Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start of the summer and an opportunity to gather with family and friends. For veterans and their families, it is a day of rememberance for those who have made the ultimate sacrifice […]