Eastern Sea Frontier

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The tanker "Dixie Arrow" was torpedoed within the Eastern Sea Frontier off Cape Hatteras on 26 March 1942.

The Eastern Sea Frontier (EASTSEAFRON) was a United States Navy operational command during World War II, that was responsible for the coastal waters from Canada to Jacksonville, Florida, extending out for a nominal distance of two hundred miles. The Commander was designated Commander, Eastern Sea Frontier (COMEASTSEAFRON). COMEASTSEAFRON had vessels for convoy use or other uses determined by the commander. In addition to providing escorts for convoys within its frontier, the frontier was responsible for sea-air rescue, harbor defense, shipping lane patrol, minesweeping, and air operations.


Although the Code of Federal Regulations indicate Eastern Sea Frontier's commander also served as commander of the Atlantic Reserve Fleet as of 1937-38;[1] establishment of the Eastern Sea Frontier awaited action by Chief of Naval Operations Harold Rainsford Stark on 1 July 1941.[2]

Eastern Sea Frontier's headquarters were located at 90 Church Street in Lower Manhattan. The commander of the Eastern Sea Frontier, until the closing months of 1943, was Vice Admiral Adolphus Andrews. COMEASTSEAFRON had control and responsibility for convoys within its defined area. Convoys from adjacent sea frontiers would continue across sea frontier boundaries. Since the Eastern Sea Frontier coordinated with the Royal Canadian Navy for convoys crossing into the Canadian Coastal Zone, the Eastern Sea Frontier was the "parent" of the contiguous sea frontiers to the south, and COMEASTSEAFRON authority extended beyond its own frontier. COMEASTSEAFRON operational orders could only be appealed to Admiral Ernest King.[2]


COMEASTSEAFRON resources included a blimp airship group at Naval Air Engineering Station Lakehurst, a special convoy air escort group at Naval Air Station Quonset Point, and the Northern, Narragansett, New York, Delaware, Chesapeake, and Southern Air Groups operating from sixteen airfields from Bar Harbor NAAF to Naval Air Station Jacksonville.[3] COMEASTSEAFRON worked closely with the U.S. Army Air Force in the defense of the frontier. Usually, offices of the U.S. Navy and U.S. Army Air Force officers assigned to the frontier, had their offices side by side in order to create effective two-way communications and expedited reaction to reports of enemy presence.


Vice Admiral John S. McCain, Jr. served as Commander, Eastern Sea Frontier, 1965-67, and he was relieved by Admiral Andrew McBurney Jackson, who retired in 1969.


  1. ^ The Code of federal regulations of the United States of America having general applicability and legal effect in force June 1, 1938: 1st ed., published by the Division of the Federal register, the National archives, pursuant to section 11 of the Federal register act as amended June 19, 1937 (Google eBook)
  2. ^ a b Morison, pp.207&208
  3. ^ Morison, p.248


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