The U.S. Coast Guard and Army Amphibious Development
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
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The crucial amphibious landings of World War II had their foundations established in 1933 with the inauguration of the Fleet Marine Force. After a lethargic beginning and a series of marginally successful landing exercises in the 1930s, the raising prospects for worldwide conflict generated a crescendo of amphibious development. The U.S. Army, Navy and Marines all embarked on amphibious training programs, sometimes jointly, and often severely splintered. The U.S. Coast Guard, in spite of its small size and non-military emphasis, became a significant participant in much of this saga. The Coast Guard provided surges of skilled amphibious manpower and individual expert guidance to both the Army and Navy. This paper highlights the Coast Guards joint role in supporting the U.S. Army preparations of its World War II engineer amphibians. The principal setting is the Engineer Amphibian Command at Camp Edwards, on Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Participation by the Coast Gurads Boat Unit Detachment occurs during the period June 1942 to July 1943. Theirs is a story little known by military historians and therefore seldom mentioned by writers describing amphibious development.
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