1919-Congress passed the National Prohibition Enforcement Act, otherwise known as the Volstead Act, on this date. The Volstead Act authorized the enforcement of the 18th Amendment, ratified on 29 January 1919. The Act authorized the Coast Guard to prevent the maritime importation of illegal alcohol. This led to the largest increase in the size and responsibilities of the service to that date. 1943-Choiseul, Treasury Islands landing (Coast Guard-manned LST-71 was in second echelon November 1, 1943). 1991-Thousands of Haitian migrants began fleeing their homeland after the overthrow of Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, prompting one of the largest SAR operations in Coast Guard history. Cutters and aircraft from as far north as New England converged on the Windward Passage. In the first 30 days of the operation, Coast Guard forces rescued more than 6,300 men, women, and children who left Haiti in grossly overloaded and unseaworthy vessels. 75 Coast Guard units ultimately took part in the massive SAR operation and by the end of the year over 40,000 Haitian migrants were rescued. (Source: USCG Historian’s Office)
On Friday, July 23, First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama christened the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Stratton, a vessel that was detail designed and production engineered by Northrop Grumman using ShipConstructor CAD/CAM software. Stratton is the first Coast Guard patrol cutter to be named after a woman in more than 20 years. The ship is named in honor of Dorothy Constance Stratton, the first female commissioned officer in Coast Guard history
An important milestone, and one of the first building projects in the $17 billion transformation of the U.S. Coast Guard, took place earlier this month at Bollinger Shipyards, Inc., Lockport, La., with the decommissioning of the 110-ft. Island Class Patrol Boat, USCG Matagorda. While seemingly contradictory, the vessel's decommissioning is only temporary as during the next nine months, it will undergo extensive modifications and re-emerge as a larger 123-ft
1836- A General Order from the Secretary of the Treasury prescribed that "Blue cloth be substituted for the uniform dress of the officers of the Revenue Cutter Service, instead of grey. . ." thereby ending a controversy that ad brewed for years regarding the uniforms of the Service. 1947- The first helicopter flight to the base "Little America" in Antarctica took place. The pilot was LT James A
1918- Keeper John Allen Midgett and the crew of Station No. 179 at Chicamacomico, North Carolina rescued the crew of the mined British tanker SS Mirlo. All but one of the crew were named Midgett and each received the Gold Lifesaving Medal for their actions in saving the crew amid burning oil and wreckage. 1941-The Honolulu Coast Guard District was transferred to the Navy. 1999-For the first time weapons were fired from a Coast Guard HITRON helicopter "to execute the
1945-CGC Magnolia was rammed amidships on 25 August 1945 by the cargo ship SS Marguerite Lehand off Mobile Bay. She sank in two minutes and one of her crew was killed. The other 49 were rescued. Those survivors cross-decked to the new tender CGC Salvia (WAGL-400) which then took Magnolia's place. 1950-SS Benevolence collided with SS Mary Luckenbach. CGC Gresham and other vessels responded and rescued 407 persons.
1909- Stations Holly Beach, and Hereford Inlet, New Jersey: the schooner C.B. parted its chain while weighing anchor. She set a distress signal which was discovered by the lookouts at both stations. The surfboats proceeded to the scene and surfmen swept for the chain and assisted in securing it on board. 1943- USS Ingham, CG, rescued all hands from the torpedoed SS Matthew Luckenbach. 1967-The 378-foot high endurance cutter Hamilton, first in her class, was commissioned
1953- Coast Guard aircraft and surface craft of the Search and Rescue Group at Wake Island joined with a large naval task unit in conducting an intensive search for a Transocean Air Lines DC-6 aircraft last reported about 300 miles east of Wake Island. The scene of the crash was located, and 14 bodies were recovered. (Source: USCG Historian’s Office)
1883- At half past 1 in the afternoon, a boy named Frank Little, eight years old, while playing upon the Government wharf at Sand Beach, Michigan, fell overboard, and would have been drowned but for the assistance of Surfman James McCash, of Sand Beach Station (Tenth District), who hurried to the spot just in time to save him. 2001- The first set of the newly authorized Helicopter Rescue Swimmer insignia, or ‘wings’, were presented to the senior rescue swimmer in the Coast Guard
1789-An act of Congress provided for the registering and clearing of vessels and the regulation of the coastwise trade, thus laying the foundation of American navigation laws which, until 1912, embodied the marine policy of the United States. 1894-An armed guard of Revenue Cutter Service personnel were placed on the Pribiloff Islands to protect seals. 1938-The Coast Guard assumed responsibility for the Maritime Service.
Today in U.S. Naval History - April 22 1778 - Captain John Paul Jones of Ranger led landing party raid on Whitehaven, England 1898 - U.S. warships begin blockade of Cuba 1987 - U.S. Navy ordered to provide assistance to neutral vessels under Iranian attack outside the exclusion zone and
Today in U.S. Naval History: April 23 1917 - Launching of USS New Mexico, first dreadnought with turboelectric drive 1918 - USS Stewart destroys German submarine off France 1945 - In only U.S. use of guided missiles in WW II, 2 BAT missiles release at Balikiapan, Borneo
The Canadian Government informs it has awarded a $6.5 million contract to Babcock Canada Inc. for critical refit work for Canadian Coast Guard ship 'CCGS Louis S. St-Laurent'. The shipyard portion of the work will be carried out by Chantier Davie Canada Inc., a sub-contractor to Babcock Canada.
Today in U.S. Naval History - April 24 1778 - Continental Navy sloop Ranger captures HMS Drake 1862 - Battle of New Orleans; Union Navy under David Farragut runs past forts into Mississippi River 1884 - USS Bear left the New York Naval Shipyard as part of the Greely Relief Expedition
Today in U.S. Naval History - April 8 1925 - First planned night landings on a carrier, USS Langley, by VF-1 1950 - Unarmed Navy patrol aircraft shot down over Baltic Sea by USSR 1951 - First of four detonations, Operation Greenhouse nuclear test
Today in U.S. Naval History - April 9 1861 - Second relief convoy for Fort Sumter left New York 1941 - Commissioning of USS North Carolina, which carried nine 16-inch guns 1943 - Reestablishment of Commodore rank 1959 - Selection of first 7 Mercury astronauts
Today in U.S. Naval History - April 10 1941 - USS Niblack, while rescuing survivors of torpedoed ship, depth charged German submarine; first action of WW II between U.S. and German navies 1963 - During diving tests, USS Thresher lost with all hands (112 crew and 17 civilians) east of Cape Cod
Today in U.S. Naval History - April 11 1783 - Congress declares end of war with Great Britain 1900 - Navy accepted its first submarine, USS Holland 1970 - Launch of Apollo 13, commanded by Capt. James A. Lovell, Jr., USN. Former naval aviator Fred W. Haise, Jr. was the Lunar Module Pilot
Today in U.S. Naval History - April 14 1898 - Commissioning of first Post Civil War hospital ship, USS Solace 1969 - North Korean aircraft shoots down Navy EC-121 reconnaissance aircraft from VQ-1 over the Sea of Japan 1988 - USS Samuel B. Roberts struck Iranian mine off Qatar
Today in U.S. Naval History: April 15 1885 - Naval forces land at Panama to protect American interests during revolution 1912 - USS Chester and USS Salem sailed from MA to assist RMS Titanic survivors 1918 - First Marine Aviation Force formed at Marine Flying Field, Miami, Fla.
Today in U.S. Naval History: April 16 1863 - Union gunboats pass Confederate batteries at Vicksburg 1924 - Navy commences relief operations in Mississippi Valley floods, lasting until June 16 1947 - Act of Congress gives Navy Nurse Corps members commissioned rank
Serious crashes in the bustling Bay of Galveston have fallen to the lowest level in a decade even as more oil moves on U.S. waterways, official data show, suggesting that better training and equipment are helping avert spills like one in March.
The US Coast Guard informs that Rear Adm. Charles W. Ray will relieve Vice Adm. Paul F. Zukunft (US Coast Guard Commander designate) as Commander, Coast Guard Pacific Area and Coast Guard Defense Forces West, in a change-of-command ceremony at Coast Guard Island in Alameda.
Today in U.S. Naval History - April 17 1778 - Sloop-in-war Ranger captures British brig For more information about naval history, visit the Naval History and Heritage Command website at history.navy.mil.
Today in U.S. Naval History - April 21 1861 - USS Saratoga captures slaver, Nightingale. 1898 - U.S. at war against Spain. 1906 - Commander Robert Peary discovered supposed Arctic Continent did not exist. 1972 - Moonwalk in the Descartes Highlands by Capt. John W