The United States Coast Guard was founded on August 4, 1790, when the first Congress authorized the construction of ten vessels to enforce tariff and trade laws and prevent smuggling. Known variously as the Revenue Marine and the Revenue Cutter Service, the Coast Guard expanded in size and responsibilities as the nation grew. The volunteers and staff of USS SLATER will commemorate the 221st Birthday of the United States Coast Guard on Thursday, August 4, 2011 at 9:00 a.m. with a ceremony aboard the ship in Albany. “Coasties” and their friends and families are invited to attend.
It is appropriate to celebrate the Coast Guard’s Birthday aboard USS SLATER, as during World War II, the Coast Guard manned hundreds of Navy and Army vessels, including 30 Destroyer Escorts. Coast Guard-manned ships hunted enemy submarines, protected convoys to Europe, delivered troops and supplies to the various theaters of the war, and operated landing craft which delivered troops to the invasion beaches. Coast Guard cutters and destroyer escorts played a pivotal role fighting Nazi U-Boats in the Battle of the Atlantic. Following the war, during the 1950s, destroyer escorts were once again called into Coast Guard service to serve as weather ships. The SLATER volunteer crew includes a strong Coast Guard contingent, dedicated to preserving a piece of American history.
The ship is open Wednesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., through November 27. Admission is $7 for adults and $5 for children. The ship is located on the Hudson River in Downtown Albany just south of the Dunn Memorial Bridge.