The Marine Corps Birthday

Well America. November 10 always marks the birthday of your United States Marine Corps. There is a rich history left behind from each generation of leathernecks and devil dogs and jarheads. Here's a few things you might like to know about your Marine Corps.

 A resolution drafted by a Continental Congress committee in Tun Tavern in Philadelphia, PA passes on November 10, 1775The proprietor of Tun Tavern was Robert Mullan. This resolution called for the raising of two battalions of Continental Marines able to fight on sea or shore. First order of business was to commission the first commandant, young Philadelphian Samuel Nicholas. Mullan became his first captain and chief recruiter the same day. (Probably first thing! Over a beer!) So guess where the first recruiting office was? Yep. Tun's Tavern. Seems to fit doesn't it?! "On November 10, 1775, the Continental Congress commissioned Samuel Nicholas to raise two Battalions of Marines.  That very day, Nicholas set up shop in Tun Tavern.  He appointed Robert Mullan, then the proprietor of the tavern, to the job of chief Marine Recruiter -- serving, of course, from his place of business at Tun Tavern.  Prospective recruits flocked to the tavern, lured by (1) cold beer and (2) the opportunity to serve in the new Corps of Marines.  So, yes, the U.S. Marine Corps was indeed born in Tun Tavern.  Needless to say, both the Marine Corps and the tavern thrived during this new relationship." - The early Marines distinguished themselves four months after being commissioned in March of 1776 at Fort Nassau, their first amphibious raid on foreign soil in the Bahamas. Led by the new commandant Captain Samuel Nicholas, these Marines took the quick surrender of British troops and seized cannons, powder and other supplies supporting the war against the colonies. Although the Continental Marines were disbanded after the war ended with the 1783 Treaty of Paris along with the Continental Navy, the Marines were formally re-established on July 11, 1798. It was soon after this a Marine operation was initialized to take on Libyan pirates off the "the shores of Tripoli." Because of the Marines versatility, The Corps has served in every American conflict. For a partial list of engagements from WWI to the present check out

History of The Eagle, Globe and Anchor

In 1776, the device consisted of a "fouled anchor" of silver or pewter. (A fouled anchor is an anchor which has one or more turns of the chain around it). The fouled anchor still forms a part of the emblem today. Changes were made in 1798, 1821, and 1824. In 1834, it was prescribed that a brass eagle be worn on the hat, the eagle to measure 3 ½ inches from wingtip to wingtip.
During the early years numerous distinguishing marks were prescribed, including "black cockades," "scarlet plumes," and "yellow bands and tassels." In 1859 the origin of the present color scheme for the officer's dress uniform ornaments appeared on an elaborate device of solid white metal and yellow metal. The design included a United States shield, half wreath, a bugle, and the letter "M."
In 1868, Brigadier General Commandant Jacob Zeilin appointed a board "to decide and report upon the various devices of cap ornaments of the Marine Corps." On November 13, 1868, the board turned in its report. It was approved by the Commandant four days later, and was signed by the Secretary of the Navy on November 19, 1868.
The emblem recommended by the 1868 board consisted of a globe (showing the Western Hemisphere) intersected by a fouled anchor, and surmounted by a spread eagle. On the emblem itself, the device is topped by a ribbon inscribed with the Latin motto "Semper Fidelis" (Always Faithful). The uniform ornaments omit the motto ribbon.
The general design of the emblem was probably derived from the Royal Marines' "Globe and Laurel." The globe on the U.S. Marine emblem signifies continuing historical service in any part of the world. The eagle represents the nation of the United States. The anchor, whose origin dates back to the founding of the Marine Corps in 1775, acknowledges the naval tradition of the United States Marines and their continual service under the command of the Department of the Navy. - from

Click this pic for a real American hero story!
At the time of this writing a total of 297 Marines have been the recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor awards. Men like Smedley Butler, Dan Daly, John Basilone, Louis H. Wilson Jr., Grant F. Timmerman and, most recently, Sgt. Dakota Meyer.

"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. But, the Marines don’t have that problem." - Ronald Reagan, President of the United States, 1985

First women in the Marines. Lucy Brewer, disguised herself as a gung-ho motivated man and became the first woman to serve as a Marine. She served in the Marine Detachment (MarDet) of the USS Constitution in The War of 1812.  On August 12, 1918, the Secretary of the Navy granted authority to enroll women for clerical duty in the Marine Corps Reserve.  The next day, Opha M. Johnson enlisted and became the first official Woman Marine.

The United States Marine Corps War Memorial in Washington D.C. depicts one of the most famous moments of World War II in the battle of Iwo Jima and stands symbolic of its grateful nation's honor for the Marines that have died in the defense of the United States since 1775. The figures are 32 feet high and are forever erecting a 60 foot flagpole of which an American Flag flies 24 hours a day. The figures posed are the same positions as in the famous photograph taken by Joe Rosenthal. The development of the memorial site and the cost of the statue had no public funding. The $850,000 was all donated by U.S. Marines, former Marines, Marine Reservists, friends of the Marine Corps and members of the Naval Service.

Marine Divisions

                1st Marine Division               2nd Marine Division
                    Camp Pendleton California          Camp Lejeune North Carolina

                     3rd Marine Division              4th Marine Division
     Camp Smedley D. Butler Okinawa, Japan     New Orleans, Louisiana           

               5th Marine Division              6th Marine Division    
                                    Inactive                                                Inactive             

In closing, I'd like to share with you...
The Marines' Prayer
Almighty Father, whose command is over all and whose love never fails, make me aware of Thy presence and obedient to Thy will. Keep me true to my best self, guarding me against dishonesty in purpose in deed and helping me to live so that I can face my fellow Marines, my loved ones and Thee without shame or fear. Protect my family. Give me the will to do the work of a Marine and to accept my share of responsibilities with vigor and enthusiasm. Grant me the courage to be proficient in my daily performance. Keep me loyal and faithful to my superiors and to the duties my country and the Marine Corps have entrusted to me. Make me considerate of those committed to my leadership. Help me to wear my uniform with dignity, and let it remind me daily of the traditions which I must uphold. If I am inclined to doubt; steady my faith; if I am tempted, make me strong to resist; if I should miss the mark, give me courage to try again. Guide me with the light of truth and grant me wisdom by which I may understand the answer to my prayer. Amen.

Recommended Video:

Related Links
Marine Corps History     United States Marine Corps War Memorial
A Commitment To Our Nation     Commandants Of The Marine Corps
Overview Of Marine Corps History    Tun Tavern Historic Beginnings
Marine Corps Birthplace, Tun Tavern   Proud To Be An American
List Of United States Marine Corps Regiments     Marine Gear
Medal Of Honor Statistics     Congressional Medal Of Honor Society

- Published 11/10/2011