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U.S. Coast Guard Celebrates 230th Birthday in August

Originally founded in 1790 as the Revenue Marine, the maritime service became the U.S. Coast Guard in 1915. August 4 is considered to be the U.S. Coast Guard’s birthday, which makes August 4, 2020 the military organization’s 230th birthday.

Alexander Hamilton, while serving as the nation’s treasury secretary, originally founded the Revenue Marine, also known as the Revenue Cutter Service. Congress authorized the service on August 4, 1790. The Revenue Marine, though under the Treasury Department, has always been considered a part of the nation’s military.

The Revenue Marine was responsible for patrolling the nation’s waters to enforce customs laws, but also fought in wars to defend coastlines, took out pirates and smugglers, and intercepted slave vessels.

In 1915, President Wilson signed into law the U.S. Coast Guard, which combined the Revenue Cutter Service with the Live-Saving Service. Except during times of war, the Coast Guard remained under the Treasury Department until 2003, when the service moved under the Department of Homeland Security.

Over the years, the Coast Guard has served a number of important services, including patrolling waters during World Wars I and II and today, ensuring water safety, providing water rescues, and responding to hurricanes, floods, and other emergencies. The Coast Guard currently utilizes approximately 1,400 boats and 200 helicopters and airplanes in support of its work. shares four interesting facts about the Coast Guard:

  1. The oldest serving Coast Guard member was 105. Anthony Christy, who manned the Christiana Lighthouse in Delaware, died while on duty in 1862.
  2. High standards for U.S. Coast Guard rescue swimmers: the qualifying criteria is so tough that 50% of applicants fail every year.
  3. A dog served in the U.S. Coast Guard during World War II. Sinbad was an official member of the crew, complete with his uniform, his own bunk, and paperwork.
  4. U.S. Coast Guard tracks movements of icebergs. The U.S. Coast Guard is a part of the International Ice Patrol, which monitors and reports movements of icebergs around the world.

Capitol Tech is a proud member of The Yellow Ribbon Program, which is a provision of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008. The program means that Capitol Tech has entered into an agreement with the Veteran’s Administration (VA) so that qualifying veterans have the opportunity to pursue a degree tuition free. The university also participates with the Montgomery GI Bill and other military-based educational benefits.

More information on this benefit, including which veterans are eligible, is available on the Military and Veteran’s web page. For more information on Capitol Tech’s degree programs, contact

The staff at Capitol Tech would like to thank members of the U.S. Coast Guard, and all branches of the military, for their service.

Learn more about the history of the U.S. Coast Guard.