For individuals who served in the U.S. Merchant Marine, the United States Coast Guard was and is responsible for issuing merchant mariner documentation ("seaman's papers" or "Z cards") and officers' licenses. Merchant Marine personnel records (other than those killed during World War II, see below) are available through the following address:
U.S. Coast Guard National Maritime Center
Mariner Information (NMC-4)
ATTN: Correspondence Section
100 Forbes Drive
Martinsburg, WV 25404
Telephone: (304) 433-3400
The merchant mariner veteran or survivor should submit as much identifying information as possible including name, date of birth, copy of death certificate if deceased, Social Security number, address, and Z or service number.