Happy B-day, big Green
On this day in 1775, the Continental Congress authorized the recruitment of riflemen for the newly-formed Continental Army, which today’s U.S. Army takes as its born on date, making it 244-years young.
As noted by the Army’s CMH, the images on the service’s seal and flag, adopted in 1947:
Reflect traditions of military service and the founding of the nation. In the center is an armored breastplate, a symbol of strength and defense.
The sword, espontoon (spontoon), musket, bayonet, cannon and cannon shot, mortar, and mortar bombs are all representative of Army implements – or “the tools of the trade” – in use at the time of the Army’s founding in the Revolutionary War.
The drum and drumsticks are symbols of public notification and the Army’s purpose and intent to serve the Nation and its people.
The “Liberty Cap,” or “Phrygian” cap, represents the founding of the Army for the defense of American liberty during the Revolution, and is supported on the point of the unsheathed sword.
The Army’s motto “This We’ll Defend” is written on a scroll held by the rattlesnake. The rattlesnake evokes the Army’s Revolutionary War origins when it was a popular symbol displayed on American flags of the era – often with the warning “Don’t Tread On Me” – and signifies the Army’s constant readiness to defend and preserve the United States.