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Naval Academy Celebrates Marine Corps' 237th Birthday

Posted on: November 10, 2012 08:00 EST by Jessica Clark

From Naval Academy Public Affairs

Naval Academy faculty, staff and midshipmen celebrated the 237th Marine Corps birthday with a cake-cutting ceremony in King Hall Nov. 8.

This annual celebration is intended to preserve the traditions of Marine Corps heritage and integrate members into a service that honors the many years of its existence.

Traditionally, the first pieces of the cake go to the oldest and youngest Marines in attendance, symbolizing the experienced Marines passing their knowledge to the new generation. Accepting the first pieces this year were Midshipman 4th Class Peter Goutzounis, who was an active duty lance corporal before his acceptance to the Naval Academy, and Director of the Humanities and Social Sciences Division Col. Paul Montanus.

On Nov. 10, 1775, the Continental Marines were established in preparation for the Revolutionary War. The mission of this organization, as set down by the Continental Congress, was to conduct ship to ship fighting, provide shipboard security and assist in landing forces. Though disbanded after the war, the modern U.S. Marine Corps was recreated in 1798. Nov. 10 remains the day on which the Marine Corps birthday is celebrated.

The Marines began officially honoring their birthday in 1921, after Marine Corps Order No. 47, Series 1921, was issued by Maj. Gen. John A. Lejeune, requiring that a statement about the history, mission and tradition of the Marine Corps be read every Nov. 10.

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