GyG'sMailbag: Marine Corps History

GyG'sMailbag: Marine Corps History

Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

October 22nd, 2002, 11:55 am #1

(From GyG'sMailbag)

I received this from my friend Ginny who makes the trip to DC
every year
in November to honor our fallen at the Iwo Jima Memorial. She
also makes
the trip to the Vietnam Memorial as well. By the way, Ginny is a
War II Marine, and a fellow Pennsylvanian.

Semper Fidelis,


From :
Virginia Swartz

Date :
Mon, 21 Oct 2002

Jim, I don't know whether this is for real or just for fun but
it makes
a good read anyhow. As you and I both know, all good things
begin in
Semper Fi, Ginny

Where do I sign up? This is a copy of an actual recruiting poster for the Continental Marines. Those recruiters really knew how to throw out some sea stories! <>




What a Brilliant Prospect does this Event Present to every Lad of Spirit who is inclined to try his Fortune in this highly renowned Corps.

The Continental Marines

When every thing that swims the Seas must be a


Thousands are at this moment endeavoring to get on Board Privateers where they will serve without pay or reward of any kind whatsoever, so certain does their chance appear of enriching themselves by PRIZE MONEY! What an
enviable Station then must the CONTINENTAL MARINE hold,--- who with far superior advantages to these, has the additional benefit of liberal Pay, and plenty of the best Provisions, with a good and well appointed Ship under him,
the Pride and Glory of the Continental Navy; surely every Man of Spirit must blush to remain at Home in Inactivity and Indolence when his Country needs his Assistance.

Where then can he have such a fair opportunity, reaping Glory and Riches in the Continental Marines, a Corps daily acquiring new Honors, and here, once embarked in American Fleet, he finds himself in the midst of Honor and Glory,
surrounded by a set of fine fellows, Strangers to Fear, and who strike Terror through the Hearts of their Enemies wherever they go!

He has likewise the inspiring idea to know, that while he sails the Ocean to protect the Liberty of these states, that the Thanks and good Wishes of the whole American people shall send him forth on his mission and participate in his Glory. Lose no Time, then, my Fine Fellows, in embracing the glorious Opportunity that awaits you: YOU WILL RECEIVE

Seventeen Dollars Bounty.

And on your Arrival at Head Quarters be comfortably and genteely CLOTHED. And spirited young BOYS, of a promissing Appearance, who are Five Feet Six Inches High, will receive TEN DOLLARS, and equal Advantage of PROVISIONS and CLOTHING with the Men. And those who wish only to enlist for a limited Service, shall receive a Bounty of SEVEN DOLLARS, and Boys FIVE. In fact, the Advantages which the MARINE receives are too
numerous to mention here, but among the many, it may not be amiss to state --- that if he has a WIFE or aged PARENT, he can make them an Allotment of half his PAY! which will be regularly paid without any Trouble to them, or to whomever he may direct, that being well Fed and Clothed on Board Ship, the remainder of his PAY and PRIZE MONEY will be placed in Reserve for the Relief of his Family or his own private Purposes. The Single Young Man, on his
Return to Port, finds himself compelled to cut a Dash on Shore, with his GIRL and his GLASS, that might be envied by a Nobleman. Take Courage then, seize the Fortune that awaits you, repair to the MARINE RENDEVOUS, where on a FLOWING BOWL of PUNCH, on Three Times Three, you shall drink.

Long Live the United States and Success to the Marines

The Daily Allowance of a Marine when embarked is One Pound of BEEF or PORK. One Pound of BREAD. Flour, Raisins, Butter, Cheese, Oatmeal, Molasses, Tea, Sugar, &c. &c. And a Pint of the best WINE, or half a Pint of the Best RUM or BRANDY, together with a Pint of LEMONADE. They make Liberty in warm countries, a plentiful Allowance of the choicest FRUIT. And what can be more handsome than the Marines' Proportion of PRIZE MONEY, when a Sergeant shares equal with the Fleet Class of Petty Officers, such as
Midshipmen, Petty Officers, &c. which is five shares each; a Corporal with the Second Class, which Is Three Shares each; and the Private with the Able Seaman, one Share and a Half each.

Desiring Greater Particulars, and a more full account of the many Advantages of this Invaluable Corps, apply to CAPTAIN MULLAN at TUN TAVERN, where the bringer of a Recruit will receive THREE DOLLARS.

January, 1776
Semper Fidelis
You are not alone.
Addendum by Dick Gaines (Gunny G's Marines Sites-Forums)


From the book, The Marine Corps Story, by J. Robert Moskin, 1992, Little, Brown and Company
"...The two battalions were never raised; but on November 28, the Congress commissioned thirty-two year old Capt. Samuel Nicholas, a Philadelphia Quaker, and innkeeper and a blacksmith's son, as the first Marine officer. A hundred volunteers, recruited in Rhode Island, arrived at Philadelphia by December 5...probably signed up in Robert Mullan's Tun Tavern."

And, from the book, The United States Marines A History, by Edwin Howard Simmons. 1998, Naval Institute Press
"...According to legend, the recruiting redezvous was Tun Tavern, but it is more likely that it was the Conestoga Wagon, a tavern owned by the Nicholas family on Market Street between Fourth and Fifth Streets."

And, from the book, Marine Corps Book Of Lists, Albert A. Nofi, 1999, Combined Publishing
"...Eight Hoary Old Marine Corps Legends That Are Not True. 1. The first Marine recruiting station was established in Tun Tavern , in Philadelphia, the proprietor of which was so adept at securing recruits, by liberally plying them with drink, that he was made a captain in the Corps. Alas for "romance," the story is untrue. It probably got its start from the fact that Samuel Nicholas, effectively the first Marine Commandant, actually did own a tavern in Philadelphia, the Conestoga Wagon, which apparently served as his headquarters for a time. However the owner of the Tun Tavern did become a Marine officer, about a year after the creation of the Corps, which probably gave rise to the legend.



From the book, The Marines, by Edwin Howard Simmons, J. Robert Moskin, Marine Corps Heritage Foundation, 1998
"...For generations drill instructors have solemnly told recruits that the scarlet stripe on the blue trousers of Marine officers and noncommissioned officers are "blood stripes" in honor of Marines killed in storming of Chapultapec in Mexico City in 1847. Interesting but not true. The wearing of stripes on the trousers began in 1834, following the Army's practice of having trouser stripes the color of the facings. Col. Henderson prescribed buff-white stripes for officers and sergeants. When in 1839 the uniform changed back to dark blue coats faced red, officer trouser stripes became dark blue edged in red. Ten years later officer stripes changed to red and in 1859 the uniform regulations prescribed a scarlet welt inserted into the outer seam for officers, and a scarlet cord for staff noncommissioned officers and musicians. After more variations were tried, finally, in 1904 the simple and striking all-scarlet stripe was adopted..."


THE MARINES! SINCE 1775... OR 1798?

From MarineLINK
"... When the peace treaty with Britain finally was signed in 1783, only the Continental frigate Alliance was still in commission. A small Marine guard commanded by Lieutenant Thomas Elwood stayed with the frigate until Congress decided to sell the vessel in September. With the sale of the Alliance, the Continental Navy and Marines went out of existence."

From, The United Staes Marines A History...
"...As for the Marines, only the slenderest thread of continuity can be claimed by virtue of "marines" serving in the Revenue Cutter Service...There were to be Marine "quotas"...not "detachments" for there was no corps from which they could be detached...on 11 July 1798, the true birthday of the Corps, President John Adams approved...establishing and organizing a Marine Corps."

Last edited by Dick Gaines on October 22nd, 2002, 12:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.