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When is Coast Guard Day?

Coast Guard Day occurs on August 4th.

What is Coast Guard Day?

There are five branches in the U.S. military. All the other branches work for the Department of Defense, but not the Coast Guard. It falls under Homeland Security, and it has a unique mission. Coast Guard Day commemorates the birth of the Coast Guard and celebrates the hard work and bravery.

While the U.S. was still a wee little country—a mere fourteen years old—the Continental Navy was disbanded. In its place, Congress established the Revenue-Marine on August 4th, 1790. It was a fleet of independent cutters that collected tariffs and enforced maritime law when it wasn’t dealing with the Barbary pirates.

These days, coast guardsmen (a.k.a. coasties) seize drugs from cartels, defend freight ships from pirates, and intercept illegal migrants. They check ships in port for safety, help watercraft navigate, and respond to oil spills. Members of the Coast Guard also respond to 20,000 search and rescue calls every year, saving about 4,000 lives annually.

The Coast Guard plays a vital role in our nation’s defense. That’s why we honor the courage and determination of our guardsmen on Coast Guard Day.

Fun facts about Coast Guard Day!

  • Members of the Coast Guard have mixed feelings about the title “guardians” instead of “guardsmen.” Some don’t mind; some really don’t like it.
  • The Coast Guard was the only American navy between 1790 and 1797, when the first three warships set sail as the U.S. Navy.
  • The Deployable Operations Group is the Coast Guard force that handles counter-terrorism, counter-piracy, and biological/chemical threats, among other things.
  • The U.S. has 95,000 miles of coastline to protect.
  • Coast Guard aviators have a fraternal organization called the Coast Guard Aviation Association. It used to go by the name Ancient Order of the Pterodactyl.

How to celebrate Coast Guard Day:

  • Send a note of gratitude to anyone you know who used to serve or currently serves in the U.S. Coast Guard.
  • Study Coast Guard history. Find a book about the major battles and victories of the Coast Guard.

What’s the hashtag for Coast Guard Day?

Use #NationalCoastGuardDay on social media to thank our nation’s Coast Guard.