Today marks the 225th anniversary of the creation of the U.S. Coast Guard. Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson congratulates the men and women of the U.S. Coast Guard on this remarkable anniversary, and extends his gratitude for their unfailing service to this nation, in a new video message.
By signing the Tariff Act on August 4, 1790, President George Washington gave Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton the authority to build ten single-masted sailing ships, called revenue cutters, and were estimated to cost only $1,000 each. The U.S. Coast Guard traces its roots to this day and celebrates the foundation laid by these early revenue cutters and the crews that selflessly served to protect our shores and guard the revenue that kept our country strong.
Ever since, the mission of the U.S. Coast Guard has continued to expand and evolve. The service that began as the enforcers of revenue and piracy laws and rescued mariners in distress has become the defenders of America’s 95,000 miles of coastline, supporting nearly all of our nation’s maritime interests.
Today, the U.S. Coast Guard fights transnational criminal organizations, intercepts the illicit drug trade, facilitates the flow of maritime commerce on our waterways, guards the increased human activity in the Arctic, and monitors cyber threats that endanger our digital systems.
The Department of Homeland Security works to support these missions, and 225 years on, the men and women of the U.S. Coast Guard continue to live up to “semper paratus – always ready,” each and every day.
Congratulations Coasties, we salute you!