Today marks the 247th birthday of the United States Marine Corps founding at Tun Tavern. Interestingly, the person commissioned by the Second Continental Congress to raise two battalions of Marines, Samuel Nicholas, was the innkeeper of Tun Tavern and a Quaker. He is buried at Arch Street Friends Meeting’s graveyard where the Marines lay a wreath in his memory on the Marine Corps’ birthday.
Quakers are one of three historic peace churches which means they oppose violence and war. AND Samuel Nicholas (1744-1790) the first commandant of the Marine Corps was a Quaker. AND he’s buried in Philadelphia in our Quaker burial ground. #meetquakerhistory pic.twitter.com/pSHUBTvget— Arch Street Meeting House (@HistoricASMH) July 3, 2019
Nicholas gives new meaning to the term “Fighting Quakers”. I wonder how many Quakers are aware of this connection to the Marine Corps. I know that I never heard of it when I attended Guilford College which is a Quaker college.
Nicholas started recruiting immediately upon receiving his commission from the Continental Congress. In that spirit, here are a couple of older recruiting posters.
Finally, here is the official birthday message from the Commandant in video form.