Chase, 1934

Nov. 23, 2020

Chase, 1934

CG-9277 (ex-Kirk and Sweeney; ex-George and Earl)

Salmon P. Chase resigned from the Senate in 1861 to become the 25th Secretary of the Treasury as the Civil War began.  He served for President Abraham Lincoln in that capacity from March 7, 1861 until June 30, 1864.  The war created the need to raise money, and with customs revenue from the Southern cotton trade cut off, Chase had to implement internal taxes. The Bureau of Internal Revenue, later the Internal Revenue Service, was created in 1862 to collect stamp taxes and internal duties. The next year it administered the nation's first income tax.  In order to further finance the war, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing was established in 1862 to print the government's first currency, known as greenbacks because of their color. These were legal tender notes not backed by specie. Chase disapproved in principle of the legal tender notes; with no requirement for specie backing they could be printed in unlimited quantities and were therefore inflationary. He recognized their necessity in a time of emergency, but later, as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, he would declare the notes unconstitutional.  The National Banking System was created in 1863 to establish a uniform currency.  The greenbacks, within a new network of national banks, directly involved the government in banking for the first time.  Chase resigned in 1864, having put the nation's finances in a more favorable condition.  Lincoln appointed him Chief Justice later that year, and he presided over the Court during the difficult period of Reconstruction.

Salmon P. Chase was born in 1808. He died in 1873.

Builder: Yarmouth, Nova Scotia

Length: 137

Beam: 27' 3"

Draft: 12'


Rig: Schooner

Cost: N/A

Commissioned: 1921 (private); 1934 (USCG)

Decommissioned: 1939

Disposition: Sold

Machinery:  Semi-diesel engine

Performance & Endurance:






The Chase was a captured rum-runner originally built as the Kirk and Sweeney in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia.  She was renamed George and Earl sometime after that and was captured by the Coast Guard on 7 December 1934 for violating the Volstead Act.

She was then used as a training vessel at New London, Connecticut until she was sold in 1939 after being damaged in the 1938 hurricane.  She was used on the lumber trade on the Chesapeake Bay without her sailing rig.  She later served as a breakwater in the 1950s at Rock Hall, Maryland.


Cutter History File.  USCG Historian's Office, USCG HQ, Washington, D.C.

Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.  Washington, DC: USGPO.