Coast Guard Birthday

The U.S. Coast Guard has been around for quite some time. It was created on August 4, 1790, when the United States Congress authorized the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, to build ten ships to enforce tariff laws and stop smuggling activities. These vessels were known as revenue cutters, and over the next few years, these ships, as well as others that were to be built, protected the coastline of the United States from all manner of illegal activities. It’s for this reason that all Americans should take the time out of their day on the 4th of August to celebrate the Coast Guard’s Birthday.

The History of the U.S. Coast Guard

Since the Coast Guard’s birthday has been observed ever since it was first created, it’s probably a good idea to talk about the history of the Coast Guard itself. As we stated in our introduction, the U.S. Coast Guard, or USCG, was first created by the United States Congress on August 4, 1790. Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton headed up the service and pressed it into service collecting customs duties at all United States seaports. Over the next 70 years, it would take on other responsibilities as well, and by 1860 the service was known as the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service. This service had originally been called the Revenue-Marine, but that name for this service fell out of fashion by this time.

In 1915, the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service would take on additional responsibilities when it was merged with the U.S. Life-Saving Service on January 28th. Twenty-four years later, in 1939, the U.S. Lighthouse Service would also be merged into the Coast Guard. From the time of its inception to the current day, one thing hasn’t changed about the U.S. Coast Guard, however. It has always been involved in every U.S. war. This included the Quasi-War that took place between the U.S. and France from 1798 to 1800, as well as modern conflicts.

Fun Facts About the U.S. Coast Guard

Below are two facts we learned about the U.S. Coast Guard and would like to share.

The U.S. Coast Guard Predates the Department of the Navy

The United States Coast Guard was created in 1790, but the Department of the Navy wasn’t established by Congress until April of 1798. However, it should be noted that some people disagree with this statement, including the U.S. Navy. Many people consider the U.S. Navy to be older because there was a Continental Navy created on October 13, 1775. However, since that navy was decommissioned and a new one was created in 1798, we consider the Coast Guard to have been formed before the U.S. Navy.

The U.S. Coast Guard Has Over 40,000+ Active Members

The Coast Guard has over 40,500 members. That makes them a little bit larger than the New York Police Department.

Observing the U.S. Coast Guard Birthday

On this day, the U.S. Coast Guard usually holds parades, honor guards, and other activities for its service members and for members of the general public. People all over the country can also take part in honoring the Coast Guard’s Birthday by learning more about their history, visiting museums that have Coast Guard displays, or attending one of the parades that are held on this day.

Where is it celebrated?
United States (Observance)
When is it?
This year (2024)
August 4 Sunday
Next year (2025)
August 4 Monday
Last year (2023)
August 4 Friday