Naval Group Support Activity, Winter Harbor

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Naval Security Group Activity, Winter Harbor
Part of Naval Security Group
Winter Harbor, Maine
Naval Security Group Activity, Winter Harbor is located in Maine
Naval Security Group Activity, Winter Harbor
Naval Security Group Activity, Winter Harbor
Coordinates 44°20′17″N 68°03′43″W / 44.338°N 68.062°W / 44.338; -68.062
Site information
Owner National Park Service
Controlled by Acadia National Park
Condition Standing
Site history
Built 1935
In use 1935–2002
Garrison information
James W. Guest
Garrison Big Moose Island, Maine

Branch Medical Clinic, Winter Harbor; Customer Service Desk, Winter Harbor Maine; Naval Satellite Operations Center Detachment Alfa; Naval Security Support Group Detachment Two; Defense Commissary Agency, Winter Harbor, Maine; Navy Exchange, Winter Harbor, Maine

U.S. Naval Radio Station- Apartment Building and Power House
Built 1935
Architect Grosvenor Atterbury
Architectural style Rustic Norman
Governing body National Park Service
NRHP Reference # 13000533
Added to NRHP July 5, 2013

Naval Group Support Activity, Winter Harbor was a radio station of the United States Navy that operated from 1935 to 2002.


In the early 1930s, Otter Cliffs Radio Station on Mount Desert Island was literally falling apart.[1] John D. Rockefeller, Jr. wanted to tear down the station. The Navy was willing to meet Rockefeller halfway on the removal of the radio station from Otter Cliffs. If he would build an equally good receiving station on the coast within 50 miles (80 km) of Otter Cliffs, the Navy would agree to turn over the Otter Cliffs Station to him to include it as a donation to Acadia National Park upon the removal of the station structures.[1]

Big Moose Island, at the tip of Schoodic Peninsula about five miles across the mouth of Frenchman Bay from Otter Cliffs, seemed the ideal location.

The architect's plan for the new station included a beautiful building similar to Mr. Rockefeller's residence at Seal Harbor. Artisans from all over the world contributed to the project. It has been estimated that to build the same structure today would cost $10 million.

On Feb. 28, 1935, the U.S. Navy Radio and Direction Finding Station Winter Harbor was officially commissioned with Chief Radioman Max Gunn in charge of a complement of 11 personnel.[1]

The station's name has changed several times over the years. In 1944, it was changed to Supplementary Radio Station, U.S. Naval Radio Station Winter Harbor. In 1950, it became known as U.S. Naval Radio Station (Receiver). The present station name, Naval Security Group Activity, Winter Harbor, became official on June 9, 1958.

In the last year, the base transitioned from an operational posture to focusing on the closure process, with the ultimate goal of transferring the Schoodic parcel to the National Park Service. The last System Maintenance Training Course graduated in July 2001. The Wullenweber Antenna and Classic Wizard antennas came down in August. The last service was held at the Chapel Sept. 2, 2001, and the Foc'sle Galley served its last meal on Sept. 28, 2001.[1]

On July 5, 2013, the site was added to the National Register of Historic Places.


The current plans for the site state that the self-sufficient town is to be redeveloped into a learning center of sorts. The National Park Service will determine the final fate of the property.


Radio Direction Finding Station:CRM M. C. Gunn, CRM O. C. Coonce, CRM F. L. Freeman, CRM J. W. Pearson, CRM/LTJG M. C. Gunn, LTJG L. A. Lankford

Supplementary Naval Station:LTJG H. I. Maltz, CRE L. A. Newbury, LTJG M. C. Gunn, LTJG C. M. Smith, LCDR H. L. Kisner

Naval Radio Station (Receiver):LCDR F. V. Mason, CDR K. B. Kohler, CDR S. E. Hazelett, LCDR I. E. Willis, LCDR M. C. Morris, LCDR J. L. Koon[2]

Naval Group Support Activity:LCDR J. L. Koon, CDR T. J. Quick, CDR C. G. Lawrence, CDR S. T. Faulkner, CDR T. F. Hahn, CDR H. J. Davis, CDR J. F. WIlliamson, LCDR D. K. Layman, CDR G. C. Lawrence Montgomery Jr., CAPT J. D. Wood Jr., CAPT A. D. McEachen III, CAPT M. J. Whelan Jr., CAPT R. K. Lunde, CAPT T. F. Stevens, CAPT E. R. Dittmer, CAPT H. W. Whiton, CAPT J. T. Mitchell, CDR E. J. Kurzanski, CDR S. K. Tucker, CDR M. S. Rogers, CDR E. F. Williamson[3]


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