Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Today In History: Little-known feats...

On this date in 1776, the Continental Marine Corps captured Nassau in the Bahamas. For reasons that remain unclear to me, we gave it back. Also unknown is why this incident is unmentioned in the Marine Corps Hymn.

"From the streets of tacky tourist traps,
To the scenic beachfront bars..."


Zendo Deb said...

Puerto Rico has a much better deep water port. So we kept it.

It was all about having a refueling station for coal-fired warships in the Atlantic.

And personally, I'm not all that thrilled with the Bahamas. Flat land, shallow water. The Virgin Islands are much cooler.

Michael W. said...

Simple enough, we took all the gun powder they had stored there (with considerable help from the locals) and there wasn't anything else there worth taking. For the rest of the war, they were some of our best trading pardners in the Atlantic. This pissed off the British government like you wouldn't believe but we provided the locals with most of their food.

The Brits learned from their mistake however, in the war of 1812 the British navy built a major naval base in the Bahamas to better control the sea trade between Europe and America.

Mrs. Whitebread said...

I talked with Whitebread, and he said you might enjoy reading this: http://www.jacksonsun.com/article/20090303/NEWS01/903030308

A student fought off her potential rapist, Jack Bauer-style.

DirtCrashr said...

What about the Rum?

Don Meaker said...

The Marines and the Continental Navy were disestablished after the war. Their contribution in that war was very small. Not until 1834 did the Marines get their own regulations, and July 1834 was celebrated as the Marine Corp's birthday until 1921. It was then backdated to the Tun Tavern event, so that Marines would have two consecutive days, the second being Armistice Day.

In the Revolution, there was little glory for non-militia units. One year (1777) the Navy had 5 ships at sea, while there were over 300 privateers. The damage done to British shipping by the privateers was very severe.

That is the heritage that is referred to in Title 10, Section 311 by the terms "naval militia".

I read a recent book by a fellow named Patton on the subject.

Sgt.Fathead said...

Didn't we take as much rum as we could from British frigates? You know, just before we cannon shot their keels and burned them to the waterline?

Sgt. Fathead

D.W. Drang said...

Puerto Rico has a much better deep water port. So we kept it.
The US didn't take possession of Puerto Rico until the Spanish American War--ironically, one week before Puerto Rico was due to receive formal independence from Spain.

WV: derant: What you do in comments when you realize you completely misunderstood what someone else was saying.

staghounds said...

And there weren't any coal fired ships in 1776. Or for twenty years thereafter.

As a former Bahamian, I know that people there have long profited from Americans' disputes and flirtations with commanded chemical purity.

Anonymous said...

"...It was all about having a refueling station for coal-fired warships in the Atlantic."
OMG. alGore does a better job of making sh!t up. The year was 1776.


TJP said...

Going with Zendo Deb. I went snorkeling in the bay. I'd be afraid to run a small yacht aground. The Puerto Rico Trench is certainly better, being the deepest trench in the Atlantic and all.

Why are so many natives missing limbs in the Bahamas?

reflectoscope said...

Allegedly the first Marine to join the Corps looked at the second and said, "Things were different in the old Corps."


Anonymous said...

So by Meaker's lights, the "leather neck" was adopted during the period the Marines did not exist. This must be as big an embarrassment at Tun's as all those long-hairs in the first 50 pages of the official illustrated History of The Corps.

Old Breed, indeed. Heh.

WV: Yannisma. Wouldn't want to be.