The Coast Guard During Prohibition


For a great historical account of the Coast Guard’s role during the Prohibition Era, read this blog post over at EagleSpeak. Our duties then were not much different than our duties now protecting our borders from the smuggling of illegal drugs, people and contraband.

3 comments on “The Coast Guard During Prohibition”

  1. I actually did a presentation in college about boats called “Rum Runners” during the prohibition, that were specially made to try and outrun the law. I’m gonna go check out EagleSpeak to see if they’re talked about at all.

  2. I am studying Prohibition in the french islands Saint Pierre and Miquelon, in 1927, and I would like to find a precision:
    The US Ice cutter coast-guard Modok was looking for bootleggers, and he saw on monday 9th may 1927, at 9h o’clock in the morning, betwen Newfoundland and Saint Pierre an aircraft certainly from prohibition, I suppose she fire against this aircraft with her machine-gun , I don’t suppose they make some victims, but I would like to have confirmation of this act by the Historical US Coast-guard division, perhaps to have a look of the Modok’s Logbook? Many Thanks to help me.
    Bernard from France

    1. Bernard, the Historian’s have directed me to the National Archives ( At this site you can look up records of the United States Coast Guard including the Modoc’s log book and other Prohibition material. Good luck in your research!

      LT Connie Braesch
      Coast Guard Public Affairs

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