United States Coast Guard
August 4 marks the officially recognized birthday of the United States Coast Guard. On August 4, 1790, Congress authorized Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton's proposal to build ten cutters to protect the nation's revenue by preventing smuggling and enforcing federal tariffs. Known as the system of cutters, Revenue Service and Revenue-Marine, this service would officially be named the Revenue Cutter Service in 1894. The cutters were placed under the control of the Treasury Department. On January 28, 1915, President Woodrow Wilson signed into law the "Act to Create the Coast Guard," which combined the Revenue Cutter Service and a separate Life-Saving Service to form the United States Coast Guard. The heroism and bravery of the Coast Guard are well represented at Arlington National Cemetery. Twelve former commandants are interred at the cemetery, and two notable landmarks, the Coast Guard War Memorial and the Serpens Memorial, honor the Coast Guard's service.
As part of the United States Coast Guard's birthday celebration, we are highlighting the history of the Coast Guard War Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery with a series of guest blog posts from the USCG. These posts tell the story of the Coast Guard War Memorial and its significant role in honoring and remembering the heroism and ultimate sacrifices made by Coast Guardsmen during World War I.
*Information courtesy of the U.S. Coast Guard.