Coast Guard Birthday

Next Sunday, 4 August 2024

Every year on August 4 the United States Coast Guard celebrates its birthday. The U.S. Coast Guard was founded on this day in 1790 to provide coastal defense, enforce the payment of tariffs and trade laws, and stop smugglers from entering the country through the sea.

Since 1790 its duties have only increased, but the Coast Guard keeps serving as safe-keepers of the United States' coast, making it the oldest continuous maritime service in the country. 

The U.S. Coast Guard is a branch of the military and armed forces, and its motto is Semper Paratus or Always Ready. Honor, Respect, and Devotion to Duty are values at the core of the Coast Guard. 2023 will mark the 233 years of service of the United States Coast Guard.

The United States Coast Guard

The U.S. Coast Guard History

At the request of Alexander Hamilton, the head of the Revenue Marine, on August 4, 1790, Congress approved and funded the construction of ten vessels to protect the coast of the United States of America. Until 1798, when the Navy was re-instated, these ten Coast Guard vessels were the only naval force in the U.S. 

Early Coast Guard crews' duties included transporting government officials and sometimes they even carried mail. 

The Coast Guard, as we know it today, was formed in 1915 with the merging of the Revenue Cutter Service and the U.S. Life-Saving Service. Eventually, the Coast Guard became so essential in protecting the United States, that it was moved from its original place at the Department of the Treasury to the Department of Homeland Security in 2003. It was to aid the United States against terrorist attacks. In times of war, the Coast Guard has occasionally operated as a service of the U.S. Navy. 

The Duties of the Coast Guard

The U.S. Coast Guard is an essential service of the military, as it has a wide range of duties that go from ensuring that maritime commerce is safe and lawful and that tariffs are paid, to search and rescue missions, often in bad conditions.

They also aid other vessels with navigation, safely returning lost boats to the coast. Besides this, they ensure the protection of the environment by making sure that the coast is kept clean. Finally, they perform Port Security, to intercept any illegal migrants from coming into the country, and to stop any human or drug trafficking. 

Celebrate Coast Guard Birthday

Some branches of the Coast Guard will host parties and events on this day. Check to see if there are any near you and spend a day learning more about the history of the Coast Guard, and talking to Coast Guardsmen to hear about their exciting experiences firsthand. 

If you know any Coast Guard retirees and Veterans, you can spend the day keeping them company, listening to their stories, and paying your respects. 

Coast Guard Interesting Facts

  • On December 5, 1973, Congress passed a law that stopped the functioning of the Coast Guard Women's Reserve which meant that women would be able to able to serve alongside men in the Coast Guard Reserve.
  • The profession of Coast Guard Rescue Swimmer is very difficult. As per statistics, over half the people who attempt to become rescue swimmers fail.
  • The Coast Guard is only a part of the Department of Homeland Security, not the Department of Defense. However, the latter can control the Coast Guard in case of a war.
  • The U.S. Coast Guard consists of around 57,000 active-duty members which is definitely a lot less compared to the Marine Corps and Army.
  • The Coast Guard was originally named Revenue Marine in 1790.
  • Fifty-nine-year-old Admiral Linda Fagan created a mark in history on June 1, 2022, when she became the first woman commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard.

Coast Guard Birthday
Coast Guard Birthday

Coast Guard Birthday - Next years

Monday, 04 August 2025

Tuesday, 04 August 2026

Wednesday, 04 August 2027

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