Driving this initiative were the increasing number of maritime assistance calls the Coast Guard received from recreational boaters and the gathering clouds of war over Europe. The objectives of the new organization were to promote efficiency in the operation of motorboats, promote safety and effect rescues on the high seas and navigable waters, and facilitate other operations of the Coast Guard.
On June 23, 1939, Congress passed the Coast Guard Reserve Act. In 1941, Congress amended the original act to create the Coast Guard Auxiliary and Reserve Act which created a new military reserve and renamed the original civilian reserve the Coast Guard Auxiliary.
CG petty officer and Auxiliarist conducting boardings 1942, New York Harbor. (I can't help but wonder if he made the jump?)
National Archives/History program,
For more detailed history of the Auxiliary go to: