The Long Blue Line: Jim Evans–veteran of the World War II’s Greenland Patrol and Cutter Northland

Colorized black and white photo from 1942, showing newly enlisted recruit Jim Evans in his dress whites. (Courtesy of the Evans Family)

In April 1943, Evans was assigned to Coast Guard Cutter Northland in the famed Greenland Patrol. Evans sailed on three missions on board Northland, which escorted vessels to Greenland twice, and then to Iceland on his final mission.

The Long Blue Line: Bootleggers beware-Prohibition Law Enforcement 100 years ago

A Boston rum runner loaded with liquor after apprehension by the Coast Guard. (Boston Public Library)

Prohibition began on January 17, 1920, under President Herbert Hoover’s administration. To enforce the new laws, a Prohibition Bureau was established and was almost immediately overwhelmed. Despite having a marine division, alcohol smuggling was too lucrative, and therefore too prevalent for the Bureau. The Coast Guard became the go-to resource for enforcement, but there were issues with this solution.

The Long Blue Line: 75 years ago—Service trailblazer and FRC namesake Olivia Hooker took the oath

At 98 years old, Olivia Hooker recalled her experiences as one of the first African American female members in the Coast Guard SPAR program during World War II. Hooker is a native of White Plains, N.Y., and recieved her Doctorate as a school psychologist. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Ali Flockerzi.

Dr. Olivia J. Hooker was a pioneer in the history of women and minorities in the Coast Guard and the nation. She believed that her military service taught her “a lot about order and priorities” and “how to better form relationships, and how to deal with people without bias and prejudice.” Despite experiencing hatred and racism in her own life, she devoted her life and her career to serving the needs of her community and her nation.

Stories Behind the State of the Coast Guard

The theme for the 2020 State of the Coast Guard Address is “Why I Serve,” which highlights the individual motivations each of us have to serve in the world’s best Coast Guard.

No matter the motivation, our people come from every corner of society and bring with them individual experiences as diverse as our Nation. Each person’s unique skills and backgrounds are vital to our missions, and we wanted to capture the importance of that diversity during the State of the Coast Guard.