Daily readings about people, places, and events in American history.
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November 10th
The Marine Corps Birthday and Flag
The U.S. Marine Corps traces its origins to November 10, 1775, during the Revolutionary War, when the Continental Congress called for two battalions of Continental Marines to be raised. Their mission was to provide security on-board Navy ships, conduct ship-to-ship fighting, and serve as landing troops. Tradition has it that the Tun Tavern in Philadelphia served as the first Marines recruiting post. The Marines’ first landing, led by Captain Samuel Nicholas, came in March 1776 at New Providence, in the Bahamas, where they seized British cannons, shells, and powder.

The Marines were disbanded after the Revolutionary War, then reformed in 1798. The U.S. Marine Corps has served in every major armed conflict in American history. As a “force in readiness,” its missions range from amphibious assaults to counter-terrorism operations.

The Marine Corps flag is a scarlet banner that carries a yellow and gray image of a globe (symbolizing service in any part of the world) and an anchor (a reminder of the amphibious nature of Marines’ duties, and that the Marine Corps is a partner of the U.S. Navy). An eagle stands on the globe, holding in its beak a scroll inscribed with the Marine Corps motto, Semper Fidelis (“Always Faithful”). Below, a larger scroll reads, “United States Marine Corps.” The flag’s design dates to 1939.

American History Parade
1775
The Continental Congress founds the U.S. Marines Corps.

1871
New York Herald journalist Henry M. Stanley finds Scottish missionary David Livingstone at Lake Tanganyika, Africa, and greets him with the famous words: “Dr. Livingstone, I presume.”

1928
Notre Dame football coach Knute Rockne tells his team, “Win one for the Gipper,” and they do, beating Army 12–6.

1938
Kate Smith introduces Americans to Irving Berlin’s “God Bless America,” singing it for the first time on her network radio show.

1954
President Dwight D. Eisenhower dedicates the Marine Corps War Memorial (Iwo Jima Memorial) in Arlington, Virginia.
This content is courtesy of The American Patriot's Almanac
© 2008, 2010 by William J. Bennett and John T.E. Cribb
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