30 March, 2001
Tidbit of History
In October 1789, Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton asked the various collectors of customs about the need for boats to protect and ensure revenue collection. Sharp Delany, the collector at Philadelphia, replied that he was already using a vessel for that purpose and fully endorsed the concept. In April 1790, Hamilton asked Congress to create a Revenue Marine service with a fleet of 10 small cutters, As the Continental Navy had been disestablished after the Revolution and would no be reestablished until 1799 no armed federal vessels existed with which a Revenue Marine service could be created.
On August 4, 1790, Congress passed Hamilton's Revenue Cutter Bill which provided for construction of the following ten armed cutters: Scammel, Massachusetts, Argus, Vigilant, General Greene, Active, Virginia, Diligence, South Carolina, and Eagle. Hamilton's first ten armed vessels were not large by modern standards; they ranged in length from 40-60 feet. In fact, today we would call them boats and not cutters. Despite their small size and absence of uniformity in design, the law and these vessels established the precedent that all ships of the Coast Guard would forever be called cutters.
The Coast Guard has been instrumental in the operation of our Scientific research. The Commanding Officer is Captain Terry Julich. He is responsible for the overall safety and welfare of the ship and all personnel. Second in command is the Executive Officer Commander Richard Kermond. He is responsible for the daily routine, operation, and maintenance of the ship. Heading the six main departments include the Engineering Officer, Operations Officer, First Lieutenant, Supply Officer, Senior Aviator, and Marine Science Officer.
The Engineering Department is responsible for main propulsion, electricity and electronics, auxiliary equipment, and damage control. The Operations Department includes Quartermasters, Marine Science Technicians, Yeomen, Telecommunication Specialists, and the Health Services Technician. The First Lieutenant is responsible for maintenance and operation of all topside and internal spaces not assigned to other divisions, including small boats, operations of cranes, lines and topside rigging. The Supply Officer is responsible for logistics and port support as well as supplies and materials for the ship. The Senior Aviator is responsible for the maintenance and safe operation of the HH -65 helicopters. Special training in harsh polar environments occurs prior to flying. The Marine Science Officer is the primary point of contact for all science operations. Responsibility includes safe and successful completing of all assigned scientific operations.
Today's Marine Mammal flights occurred in the morning and afternoon. Ringed and bearded seals, walruses, beluga and bowhead whales were spotted.
The temperature was 9 degrees this morning with 20-knot winds.
We completed several science stations today. We are approaching the end of our oceanographic research. Plans include three of us leaving for St. Lawrence Island on Sunday. Monday the remaining group will depart heading south to Dutch Harbor. They should arrive in Dutch Harbor on April 6. There is a strong weather condition south near the Aleutian Islands, which may hinder departure from Dutch Harbor. We are all hopeful that it will dissipate.
I continued to work on my packing. The challenging component is whittling the items down to the maximum weight.
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