On March 27, 1794, the Senate passed and the president signed the Navy Armament Act of 1794, officially sanctioning the US Navy. The legislation was passed after years of debate over whether or not Congress should sanction a navy for the Executive Branch to administer. The act officially permitted the president to commission the construction of six ships, four with 44 guns and two with 36 guns. Since this act, the US Navy has grown to over 650 sea vessels and is the largest naval force in the world.
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