The WW II Diary of a US Merchant Mariner brings to light previously untold WW II sea action and the wartime experiences of a few seagoing men, their ships, and their voyages. The diary includes high-seas action, drama, and a bizarre event that needs to be told for posterity.
The story opens another small door into the lives of the seamen whose stories had heretofore rested dormant and gathered dust. The men of the Merchant Marine and the Navy Armed Guard, who comprise a forgotten gray area, forged a strong chain, and proved an indispensable team in the course of WW II. The narration here gathers together personal significant events of maritime shipboard action, and will provide insight and resources for future generations concerning how the US fought the way to victory.
Based upon the WW II wartime voyages of the merchant ships listed in the introduction, the story also relates the daily activities recorded within the ships’ log books, several forms which were consulted for this book.
A ship’s secret log book is maintained by the ship’s master, and subsequently is administered by the US Navy. The secret log, a wealth of information, contains voyage routes, ports of call, ship events, and records of longitude, latitude, and enemy action. In addition, the Naval Armed Guard commander also kept a daily log book of the armed guard service activities. And last, the official log book for ship activities and the merchant crew’s welfare and affairs, was kept by the ship’s chief mate. It was required by federal law and provided by the US Coast Guard. These and other records can be found shelved at the Naval District US Government Archived Files.