Updated Tuesday, May 04, 2004  

I started this web site in April of 1998 as an exercise to see if I could come up with something that made sense and would serve a useful purpose while at the same time satisfying my own ego. The format is simple following the KISS rule. I have avoided columns and frames. I believe they would clutter up these simple pages. I have added a few pictures and some gadgetry to liven things up a bit.

It took over a year to obtain my own domain and to find a host that would provide the necessary web space without dropping advertising into the pages. This is not a venture that anticipates any monetary gain whatsoever. It is really a hole in which money is poured. There is presently 100 megabytes of space available, more than enough to post photographs and many more stories.

The purpose of the board is to provide a place on the electronic World Wide Web where Coasties of any stripe can record their experiences. This is all part of our unique culture and should not die like the GAR did. I became somewhat concerned with this prospective loss after I assumed editorship of the Coast Guard Sea Veterans newsletter. Much of the early, contributed material was from WWII. This was a Coast Guard I never knew even though I entered a few years after the big war. About 1974 or 1975 the Coast Guard changed drastically from the organization that I knew during my career. I do not want those wonderful tales of land and sea lost during this period to antiquity so I am providing a place for them. I also welcome stories from before and after that era. See the FAQ page for instructions on how to submit stories and pictures to Jack's Joint. I am now only an occasional contributor to the Old Salt's Journal.

I hope you like music and varying backgrounds. They are provided as eye and ear candy. If you find the music distracting, turn it off.

Fred Siegel has provided Fred's Place as a registry for Coasties past and present and I have no intentions of duplicating his fine efforts. Ken Laesser's Coast Guard History Site  is a site similar to Jack's Joint, is infinitely more complex and  stresses historical accuracy. His is a most important site that should be visited often. Jerry Lentz's Cutter Bahooglia Site and others have made photos of the Old Guard available. Others to numerous to mention have devoted their sites to other aspects of the Coast Guard. It is not my intent to duplicate their efforts although some overlap can be expected.

During October 2000 Fred Siegel webmaster of Fred's Place posted approximately 35 of the stories found on this site on his site under the name, "Ship's Library." I applaud this gesture. I have sent him the entire contents of Jack's Joint on a CD-ROM disk with my permission to post them in the event Jack's Joint has to close. I have sent CDROM's also to Ken Laesser and Don Gardner who I am in cahoots with for getting these stories into print. I don't want these stories lost again to antiquity and this is a way of perpetuating them.

There have been a few good books written about life in the Coast Guard but they were usually of limited circulation and were lost in the stacks prematurely.

There are several sites that can be accessed through the home page. COAST GUARD STORIES is about the U.S. Coast Guard, personal experiences of life in the Coast Guard, related poetry, and so forth. I initially seeded it with some of my own experiences in hopes others would contribute theirs. This proved to work as a total of 841 articles are now in the Coast Guard Stories table of contents. Another page contains back issues of the internet edition of the OLD SALT'S JOURNAL through the year 2001, the national newsletter of the Coast Guard Sea Veterans of America. There is a LIGHTHOUSE PAGE with a few stories and a number of links to other lighthouse sites. I put some effort into verifying whether or not a lot of these sites were still on the web. Most check out now but initially there were many that didn't. I am involved to a small degree with the Fort Sheridan (IL) branch of the Ft. McCoy (WI) Military Retirees Council. I have a military page with as many valuable links as I could find on the web for your convenience if you have need for them. I have moved a few pages to Jack's Shack such as the small page for OZAUKEE COUNTY (WI) which links to their web site and allows me a page to express my personal political philosophy on local government. The PORT WASHINGTON page links to Port Washington web sites.

I solicit your contributions to this site. I will use some editorial license before I add them to the list. Please send them to me by email or by disk. I don't really feel like doing a lot of copy typing. 

This site does not subscribe to plagiarism. Copyrighted material is not knowingly posted to any of the pages without first obtaining the copyright holders permission. If you submit a copyrighted article of any sort I request you give "Jack's Joint" permission to put it on the site. The copyright and credit will be shown prominently.

A project started in August of 2000 and now complete aimed to convert all articles on this site to the Front Page 2000 format. Four or five different programs to generate HTML files were employed since the sites birth in 1998 which has led to some inconsistencies. Several articles are in the Adobe .PDF format which I do not intend to change. 

Email me for my home address if you would like it. My email address is jeckert@wi.rr.com


Jack A. Eckert, LCDR, USCG(retired)