The Revenue Cutter Service, predecessor of the United States Coast Guard, had a flag designed for it in 1799. That flag, with vertical stripes, is still in use but it was not chosen by the Coast Guard when a ceremonial color was adopted in July 1951. The United States coat of arms, dating from 1782, was displayed in the center of a white field and instead of the usual colors the design featured the national red, white, and blue. The name of the service is inscribed above the coat of arms, while below is the Coast Guard motto, SEMPER PARATUS (Always Ready). The date 1790 honors the creation of the Revenue Cutter Service.
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