The patrol boat concept had its origins in Prohibition. The Coast Guard needed fast, shallow draft boats to follow the rum runners into bays and rivers. In WWII, patrol boats were used for near-shore rescue missions that were beyond the capability of the surfboats and lifeboats. The Coast Guard fought the war with 230 83’ patrol boat, which were built to serve as escort vessels for coastal convoys. They saw action in combat theaters, including 60 that served off the coast of Normandy during the D-Day invasion, as well as in U.S waters. These wooden-hulled, gasoline powered, open bridge vessels more than met the existing requirements for a coastal patrol boat after the war. Joining the 83s were the 95’ steel-hull boats. Designed for anti-submarine warfare, they were more suited to sea keeping missions than the 83s. The 95s had a larger power plant, enclosed bridge and larger fuel capacity. They too distinguished themselves offshore and in shallow waters.
For a complete list of white hulls that served from 1947 to 2000 go to this Link.