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Welcome to our Virtual Museum

The Virtual Museum of the Coast Guard Auxiliary

In the simplest terms, the mission of the Virtual Museum of the Coast Guard Auxiliary (VMCGA) is to present, in a museum-like setting, historical objects of interest from our organization's past. The Auxiliary does not have a physical structure to house and display artifacts, although the future National Museum of the Coast Guard plans to include an exhibit dedicated to "America's Volunteer Lifesavers." Similarly, a few maritime museums and historical societies across the country have displayed artifacts associated with the Auxiliary. But, in the absence of our own, traditional "bricks and mortar" museum, the VMCGA was established to share the material culture of the Coast Guard Auxiliary through a public website accessible to all. In the words of Joseph Henry, science advisor to President Lincoln and the first secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, "The worth and importance of the Institution are not to be estimated by what it accumulates within the walls of its building, but by what it sends forth to the world." It is our hope that, in a small sense, our virtual museum "sends forth to the world" a glimpse of the Auxiliary's more than eighty years of heritage and material culture. 

The VMCGA is not meant to tell a detailed history of the USCG Auxiliary; rather, it will complement other published and electronic sources, such as John A. Tilley's The United States Coast Guard Auxiliary: A History, 1939-1999 (Washington, DC: GPO, 2003, found here in digital form: Book in PDF Format; C. Douglas Kroll’s A Coast Guardsman’s History of the Coast Guard (Annapolis: Naval Institute Press, 2010); and Mark A. Snell’s four-part PowerPoint overview of the Auxiliary’s history, found here: History of the Coast Guard Auxiliary.

Visitors to the VMCGA—who know of Auxiliary artifacts in public repositories, or might even have worthwhile historical objects in their personal collections—are encouraged to consider “donating” artifact images for display, after reading our collections policy found here: U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary - Public Affairs - History Program ( The VMCGA is a "work in progress." Please check regularly for updates and additions.

Auxiliarists from Flotilla 23, Dredge Harbor, NJ, serving as USCG Temporary Reservists, 1943
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