COAST GUARD MASTER CHIEF PETTY OFFICER COMBINATION CAP

The Master Chief Petty Officer (MCPO) grade was established in 1958 through the passage of an amendment to the Career Compensation Act of 1949 that created the pay grades of E-8 and E-9 across all of the Armed Forces of the United States. Authorized for wear with the vast majority of Coast Guard uniforms, our Coast Guard Master Chief Petty Officer Combination Cap features a cap device consisting of a silver-and-gold rendering of the MCPO insignia: a fouled anchor with a star on each side of the anchor’s top.

The fouled anchor has served as a general naval symbol for several centuries, with most sources mentioning its use on the seal of Lord Howard of Effingham, who served as Great Britain’s Lord High Admiral at the time of the victory over the Spanish Armada in 1588. But the first time that a fouled anchor is mentioned as being the cap device for Chief Petty Officers in the United States Armed Forces came in the 1897 edition of U.S. Navy Uniform Regulations, nearly 20 years before the Coast Guard was formed with the merger of the U.S. Life Saving and U.S. Revenue Cutter Services.

With the establishment in E-8 and E-9 pay grades, two new senior enlisted Coast Guard positions were created—Senior CPO and Master CPO—and with them came the need for new cap devices. Both the Navy and Coast Guard simply modified the existing CPO “fouled anchor” by adding a star for each grade above the CPO rate of E-7: one star for a Senior CPO, two stars for MCPO. For reasons that aren’t quite clear, however, the Coast Guard chose to orient the single star on the SCPO insignia with one ray pointing upward (the Navy’s SCPO has one ray pointing down).

Both services, however, use the same design for the MCPO cap device: a star on each side of the anchor with one ray pointing downward. The Navy, however, had a bit of trouble getting the new cap device into the hands of its first generation of MCPOs. Despite the fact that E-8 and E-9 rating badges had been authorized when the new grades were established, all Navy CPOs E7 to E-9 wore identical cap devices until 1969. That was the year that cap devices were finally authorized not only for Navy SCPOs and MCPOs, but also the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy, a position created two years earlier in 1967.
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Metal
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$84.99usd
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