Today in Coast Guard History – January 1st

  • 1831- A contract was made to provide the Portland Harbor (Barcelona) Lighthouse, on the south shore of Lake Erie in New York, with natural gas “at all times and seasons” and to keep the apparatus and fixtures in repair at an annual cost of $213.00.
  • 1850- The light in the Minots Ledge Lighthouse was first shown. This lighthouse was the first one built in the United States in a position directly exposed to the sweep of the open sea. It was destroyed and two keepers were killed in a great gale in April 1851.
  • 1937- Effective this date, the dividing point between the 6th and 7th Lighthouse Districts on the east coast of Florida was moved northward from Hillsboro Inlet to St. Lucie Inlet. This change was made so that the trans-Florida waterway through Lake Okeechobee so that the entire waterway would be under one jurisdiction.
  • 1946- The U.S. Coast Guard, which had operated as a service under the U.S. Navy since 1 November 1941, was returned to the U .S. Treasury Department, pursuant to Executive Order 9666, dated 28 December 1945.
  • 1946- The International Load Lines Convention, which had been suspended since 9 August 1941, was restored to full effectiveness by a Presidential proclamation dated 21 December 1945. The U .S. Coast Guard resumed assumed the enforcement of the convention’s requirements in the interest of safe loading.
  • 1954- The “Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1948” commonly known as the “Revised lnternational Rules of the Road” became law. These were a result of the International Conference on the Safety of Life at Sea, 1948.
  • 1958- The U.S. Coast Guard ceased listening continuously for distress calls on 2670 kilocycles. Although the countries of the world had agreed at the Atlantic City Convention of the International Telecommunication Union in 1947 to use 2182 kilocycles for international maritime mobile radiotelephone calling and distress, the U.S. Coast Guard had continued listening on the old frequency until the public had had sufficient time to change to the new one.
  • 1984- The CGC Westwind was heavily damaged by ice in Antarctic’s Weddell Sea. About 120 feet of the port-side hull was gashed when brash ice forced the ship against a 100-foot sheer ice shelf. The gash was two to three feet wide and was six feet above the water line. The crew made temporary repairs. There were no injuries.
  • 1985- The CGC Citrus was rammed by the M/V Pacific Star during a boarding incident. The Pacific Star then sank after being scuttled by her crew. There were no casualties. The seven crewmen were arrested on drug charges.
  • 1999- The aviation machinist ratings merged with the aviation structural mechanic ratings to form the aviation maintenance technicians with the designator AMT. The aviation electronics technician rating became the avionics technicians with the designator AVT. The aviation survivalman rating was renamed aviation survival technician

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