Happy Birthday to the United States Marine Corps...11/10/1775
"The tip of the spear..."
First to Fight...Last to Leave
The birthplace of the Marine Corps was the Tun Tavern in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania...
The tavern was erected in 1686 at the intersection of King (later called Water) Street and Tun Alley by settler Joshua Carpenter, brother of Samuel Carpenter, a Quaker merchant who made a fortune trading in Barbados. Joshua Carpenter built the Tun on the caraway that led to Carpenter's Wharf. Tun Tavern was named for the Old English word "tun," meaning a barrel or keg of beer.
The Tun Tavern hosted the first meetings of a number of organizations. In 1720, the first meetings of the St. George's Society (a charitable organization founded to assist needy Englishmen arriving in the new colony—predecessor of today's "Sons of the Society of St. George") were held there.
In 1732, the tavern hosted the first meetings of St. John's Lodge No. 1 of the Grand Lodge of the Masonic Temple. (The Masonic Temple of Philadelphia also recognizes Tun Tavern as the birthplace of Masonic teachings in America.).
In 1747 Tun Tavern became the founding place of the St. Andrew's Society, which like the St. George's Society helped newly arrived Scottish.
Tun Tavern was a significant meeting place for other groups and individuals. In 1756, Benjamin Franklin used the inn as a recruitment gathering point for the Pennsylvania militia as it prepared to fight Native American uprisings. The tavern later hosted a meeting of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and the Continental Congress.
According to tradition, Tun Tavern was where the United States Marines held their first recruitment drive. On November 10, 1775, the Second Continental Congress commissioned the innkeeper and former Quaker Samuel Nicholas to raise two battalions of Marines in Philadelphia. The tavern’s manager, Robert Mullan, was the "chief Marine Recruiter."
The first Continental Marine company was composed of one hundred Rhode Islanders commanded by Captain Nicholas. Each year on November 10th, U.S. Marines worldwide toast the memory of this colonial inn as the officially-acknowledged birthplace of their service branch. The earliest Marines were deployed aboard Continental Congress Navy vessels as sharpshooters because they were typically recruited as outstanding marksmen.