Dexter, 1925

Dec. 22, 2020

Dexter, 1925

Samuel Dexter: Educated at Harvard and trained as a lawyer, Samuel Dexter (1761-1816) resigned his seat as Massachusetts Senator in June 1800 to accept the position of Secretary of War in the cabinet of President John Adams.  Upon Secretary of the Treasury Oliver Wolcott's resignation in December 1800, Adams appointed Dexter ad interim Secretary to serve until the inauguration of Thomas Jefferson as President. Dexter served less than a year in Adams's cabinet and has no great acts associated with his name. It has been said that "his temperament and intellectual endowment ill suited him for that minute diligence and attention to intricate details which the departments of War and Finance imposed on the incumbents of office.''

Shortly before the termination of Adams's administration, the President offered Dexter a foreign embassy, but Dexter declined, remaining at the Treasury Department until Jefferson became President.

Type/Rig/Class: 100-foot patrol boat

Builder: Defoe Boat & Motor Works, Bay City, Michigan

Dates of Service: 1925 - 1936

Disposition: Transferred to the US Navy

Displacement: 210 tons

Length: 99' 8"

Beam: 23'

Draft: 4' 6"

Machinery: 2 Grey Marine diesel engines; 300 BHP; twin propellers

Speed: 12 knots maximum

Complement: 15 (with 1 warrant officer)

Armament: 1 x 3"/23

Cutter History:

The third cutter named Dexter, a 100-foot patrol boat built to combat rum-runners during Prohibition, was one of 13 in her class.  These 13 were steel-hulled patrol boats that were capable of close inshore work but were slower than the 75-foot patrol boats.  They made up for their slower speed and lack of maneuverability with better accommodations for the crew so that they could stay at sea for longer periods and work well off-shore.  They were all built by Defoe Boat & Motor Works of Bay City, Michigan. 

The Dexter was stationed at Boston, Massachusetts until 1927 and was then transferred to Pascagoula, Mississippi late in that same year.  She was transferred to Buffalo, New York, by 1935 and was decommissioned in 1936.  She was then transferred to the U.S. Navy.


Donald Canney.  U.S. Coast Guard and Revenue Cutters, 1790-1935.  Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1995.

U.S. Coast Guard.  Record of Movements: Vessels of the United States Coast Guard: 1790 - December 31, 1933.  Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1934; 1989 (reprint).