ISS3 2017

Reservist Magazine is the award-winning official publication of the United States Coast Guard Reserve. Quarterly issues include news and feature articles about the men and women who comprise America's premier national maritime safety and security

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Page 37 of 55

"Plan One, Acknowledge" and the Coast Guard's Military Baptism of Fire Story by William H. Thiesen, Ph.D., Historian, Coast Guard Atlantic Area Were such a reminder necessary, I feel sure that the splendid record of its forbear, the Revenue Cutter Service, in all the previous wars in which this country has engaged, would serve as an incentive to the officers and men of the present Coast Guard to maintain unsullied its past reputation for heroic deeds in battling the Nation's enemies. — Treasury Secretary William McAdoo McAdoo wrote the words above to Coast Guard Commandant Ellsworth Bertholf Friday, Apr. 6, 1917, the day Congress declared war on Germany. That same day, the Navy's communications center in Arlington, Va., transmitted the code words "Plan one, acknowledge" to Coast Guard cutters, units and bases throughout the United States. This coded message initiated the Service's transfer from the Treasury Department to the Navy, placing the Service on a wartime footing. Prior to World War I, President William Taft's administration had nearly disestablished the Revenue Cutter Service, the Coast Guard's predecessor service, as a cost-cutting measure. Taft proposed to dismantle the Service and distribute its assets and missions between Coast Guard boat station crew at Quonocontaug, Rhode i sland, dressed in their World War i uniforms. Coast Guard Collection Rese R vist Magazine a l ight on Yeste RY ea R 36 RESERVIST � Issue 3 • 2017

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