Friday, August 6, 2010

Booty: Honoring The Coasties

The United States Coast Guard turned 220 on August 4th. Begun with the help of such American Navy luminaries as Joshua Barney, the Coast Guard has protected the nation's waterways and right of way in foreign river roads unflaggingly for almost as long as the U.S. has been independent. Living in Alaska, where both legitimate livelihoods and ridiculous stupidity put people in harm's way on the open ocean all too frequently, I'm particularly fond of the Coasties.

Being particularly fond of art as well, I was pleased to see that the Coast Guard offers beautiful artwork by volunteer artists that commemorates the CG of yesterday and today. The above painting, "Defeat of Privateer Dart" by Dean Ellis, is just an example. It shows the nighttime firefight between a Coast Guard sloop and a British privateer during the War of 1812.

The Coast Guard Art Program now includes over 1,800 works which are displayed all over the country from the halls of Congress to the offices of various CG officers. There is also a movable display of selected works that travels to museums and elsewhere upon request. Best of all, though, you can own reproductions of the art yourself. Click over to the U.S. Coast Guard website and the article about the art program. There you can view and purchase some of these amazing pieces whose subjects range from the early history of the CG to the rescues and missions taking place right now.

It's worth taking a look, not just for the beautiful artwork but to appreciate the men and women who work so hard to keep us safe. Happy Birthday, Coast Guard; here's to another 220 years!


Timmy! said...

Ahoy, Pauline! And Happy Birthday, USCG! There were some good photos of the Coasties "Buoy Tender Olympics" which was held in Juneau on Wednesday in our local paper today (on page A-4). Unfortunately, I can not seem to find those photos on their website, but I did find some at this website, Pirate Queen:

Pauline said...

Ahoy, Timmy, and thanks for the link. We loves us dem Coasties in Alaska!