“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
New London in New London County, Connecticut — The American Northeast (New England)

Coast Guard

Coast Guard Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
1. Coast Guard Marker
The Revenue Cutter Service, the federal bureau that enforced treaties and tariffs on the seas and inland waterways, established its officer training school at Fort Trumbull in 1910. Fort Trumbull offered easy access to Long Island Sound, which was a good place to practice drills, however, the Revenue Cutter Service found the buildings uncomfortable and bleak. Rear Admiral Earl G. Rose called the post “tall in weeds, a stony and forlorn-looking place, devoid of creature comforts.”

Congress merged the Revenue Cutter Service and the Life Saving Service in 1915 to form the U.S. Coast Guard, and the school became the Coast Guard Academy. Two years later, with the entry of the United States into World War I, hundreds of Coast Guard seaman recruits flocked to Fort Trumbull for training. The twelve cadets enrolled at the academy at that time helped prepare the new recruits for service. Several temporary wooden buildings were hastily constructed for living and teaching space. Many of the recruits trained at Fort Trumbull served on cutters that escorted ships between Gibraltar and Britain.

In 1920 the Eighteenth Amendment
Marker in Fort Trumbull image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
2. Marker in Fort Trumbull
The Life-size figure next to the marker represents a Coast Guard cadet at Fort Trumbull from 1922.
Click or scan to see
this page online
went into effect and made the sale and consumption of alcohol illegal – ushering in the turbulent period known as Prohibition. Widespread illegal activity resulted in the need for more Coast Guard personnel to prevent smuggling along the coast. Section Base Four, a Coast Guard division responsible for patrolling the New London area, came to Fort Trumbull in this period. The Day, New London’s newspaper, described “sensational action,” in 1932 when the Coast Guard seized a rum-running speedboat after a seventy-mile chase.

The academy moved to its present location up the Thames River in 1932, but the Coast Guard continued to operate a radio school, a pharmacy school, and other training programs at Fort Trumbull into the early 1940s. A Coast Guard station responsible for search and rescue and law enforcement on Long Island Sound remains on the waterfront here today.
Erected by Fort Trumbull State Park.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Military. A significant historical year for this entry is 1910.
Location. 41° 20.613′ N, 72° 5.596′ W. Marker is in New London, Connecticut, in New London County. Marker can be reached from East Street, on the left when traveling south. Marker is located in the fort at Fort Trumbull State Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: New London CT 06320, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8
<i>Fort Trumbull, Revenue Cutter School, New London, Conn.</i> image. Click for full size.
circa 1912
3. Fort Trumbull, Revenue Cutter School, New London, Conn.
other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Post Civil War to 1910 (here, next to this marker); Civil War (here, next to this marker); “Aim, Load, Fire” (here, next to this marker); The Third System (a few steps from this marker); War of 1812 (a few steps from this marker); American Revolution (a few steps from this marker); Scientific Research (a few steps from this marker); Fort Interiors (a few steps from this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New London.
More about this marker. A map on the lower right of the marker contains a caption of “This drawing of Fort Trumbull from the 1931 Coast Guard Academy yearbook, shows several buildings no longer standing. Some cadets drill on the parade ground, while others play sports.”
On the left is a photograph of the inside of a building at the academy. It has a caption of “The academy set up a woodworking shop and other training areas inside the fort.” This and the map are courtesy of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.
The bottom right of the marker features a photo of “A coast guard cadet on guard duty at the entrance to the fort.” Photo courtesy of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center.
Also see . . .  History of Fort Trumbull. Friends of Fort Trumbull. (Submitted on October 16, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on October 16, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 532 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on October 16, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.   3. submitted on January 6, 2015.

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Apr. 16, 2021