The 8th & I Reunion Association
An organization of Marines
who served at
8th & I Streets, S.E.,
"What It Means to be a Marine"
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We appreciate your visit to our site and we hope you enjoy it!
The site contains hundreds of photos and documents which
reflect our service at the "Oldest Post of the Corps,"
(established by President Thomas Jefferson in 1801), which is
known throughout the Marine Corps as "8th & I" (the streets in
Southeast Washington, DC where it is located).
Welcome to our 8th and I Reunion Association web site!
All who have served at 8th&I are justifiably proud in having served there. This pride is apparent
from the great number of photos and other submissions for this web site which have been kept
for many years in scrap books and trunks, or found in attics. Mac McCarthy's (he served at 8th&I in 1969-70)
pride is manifest in his car's license plate:
To give you some flavor of service at 8th & I, we suggest
that before surfing the site, you hover your cursor over
the following "thumbnail sketches" of some of the duties there:
"What The Barracks Is All About"
This web site incorporates many new changes which contain hundreds of items of
interest, which can be accessed through its navigation line above.
As an introduction to the aura of Marine Barracks, Washington, DC,
you may view the article entitled "If Walls Could Speak" which
appeared in "Pass in Review," the Barracks magazine, in August, 1987 by
In addition, in 1990 Leatherneck Magazine ran an in-depth story spread over several monthly
issues on the "Oldest
Post in the Corps'" It explains the Mission of the Barracks, its various ceremonial
functions, as well as the various roles filled by the Marines who are stationed there.
Of interest is the fact
that the CO of the Barracks at that time, was Col. Peter Pace, USMC, who had earlier
served at the Barracks as a ceremonial officer, and who would later serve as a
four-star General in the capacity as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
For Leatherneck's first installment,
For Leatherneck's second installment,
For Leatherneck's third installment,
For Leatherneck's final installment,
8th&I Marines feel a solemn obligation to the Marine Corps War Memorial (Iwo Jima Statue) in Arlington, VA.
When they found that the US Park Service had allowed the flags to become tattered and weather-beaten, they
responded with immediate, effective action. For an account of this valuable service which guarantees a fresh flag flies
each month, click here.
Barracks service has also inspired poetry by those who served there.
1984-1988, while assigned to the Marine Barracks, 8th & I Streets, Washington, DC, Jim Schmidt, Esq., wrote a wonderful, Marine poem, MERRY CHRISTMAS MY FRIEND. Jim's poem circulates world-wide on the Internet. It is quite popular! Unfortunately, as it circulates, it is often altered, i.e., the word MARINE is replaced with some other inappropriate word. To read Jim's poem, click here.
We now present twelve poems by our "Barracks Poet," Sergeant Tom Lee (deceased, July 28, 2008), who served as a Body
Bearer from 1964-67. To read a particular poem, click on its title below:
The Boys From 8th & I.
An Evening Parade in Blue and White Dress.
He Served With Pride: "The Lion of Fallujah".
The Making of a Marine.
My Home of Granite.
Flag of Our Fathers.
A Special Night - Santa is Coming.
(Click 'Open' to read and 'Save' to download it to your computer.)
Where Have All the Heroes Gone.
(Click 'Open' to read and 'Save' to download it to your computer.)
Marine Corps Flag.
Don Maurer ('67-68) composed a poem dedicated to Tom Lee which Don read at Tom's funeral
on July 30, 2008, entitled The Last Detail which can be viewed
Yet another poem entitled 8th & I has arrived anonymously. Although we do
not know who the author is, the poem captures the spirit of the Barracks. It can be
read by clicking here..
Tom Holstein submitted a poem written by a non-Barracks Marine written specifically
for our 2005 Reunion. It is entitled The Marines of 8th&I, and can be viewed by
I received the poem, "My M-1 Rifle" and it really hit home. Although I was a machine gunner, I quickly became a rifle carrying Marine as my whole platoon was killed on the beach at Saipan. I sometimes play bagpipes for military funerals. I have my Marine jacket tailored to the Marine Tartan (my kilt). I received an invitation to play at Little Big Horn National Cemetery. I was so thrilled I wrote music for the Pipes and words to go with it . I played at the WWI Area, WWII Area, Korea and Vietnam Areas. I met some former soldiers and they asked me to play Amazing Grace, again. I did - they cried - I cried- then we all hugged. I taught them to say "Semper Fi". By then it was the end of the day. The Director of the cemetery put the words of my music in their Archives. I'm sending the words as a poem to you. I signed it "former Marine, WWII wounded on Saipan. Edmond "Buddy" Thomas, 8th & I, Barracks Detachment, 1944-45. To read Buddy's poem, "A Tribute," click here
"THANK YOU TROOPS," was written by JO MANLEY, wife of 8th & I Marine DON MANLEY, Barracks Detachment, 1952-1955. Canisteo, NY. It can be viewed by clicking here..
Click here to read Ed Croghan's poem, Face of Glory
Click here to view the Member authors and the books they've written: Authors
General Chapman's swagger stick located and donated to Barracks!
Ceremonial Guard Company (1957-60) member Don Keelan, the author of The Secrect of Camp David
retired CPA (he and his wife Verrall now run a BB in Arlington, Vt) received Col Chapman's swagger stick
when the Col returned Don's salute at the gate house. The Col said that this was acknowledgement of his
last salute as a Colonel — he was returning from HQMC with the news that he had just been promoted to
Brigadier General! Don offered the swagger stick to the Barracks, which was accepted at a ceremony at Center House in early June, which can be
viewed by clicking here
A Tribute to former Barracks Marines Killed in Action
Many Barracks Marines have served in combat, and unfortunately, some have been been killed in action.
We have dedicated a special page to their memory, which can be accessed by clicking here.
The "Old Corps" - Barracks Marines in 1865!
The Band and troops (Commandant's House in the background)
On duty at the Naval Gun Factory
(Photos submitted by Jim Donovan)
Marine barracks 8th & I 1917
While 8th& I reveres its history and traditions as the "Oldest Post of the Corps," when the Nation
progresses, 8th& I will progress with it. A case in point is that of African-American Marines who
have served at the Barracks for many years as Marine Corps Institute course writers and various
administrative posts at the Barracks, but who had never served as ceremonial troops on the parade deck
or in street parades. That situation changed in the winter of 1957-58, as described in Don Keelan's
The Integration of Ceremonial Guard Company
which may be viewed by clicking here
An important set of traditions are focused on the Barracks' relationship with the White House. The
Marine Band, of course, has played at White House functions since it was built. How has the relationship with the White
House developed over the years? An excellent paper on this subject has been compiled with the assistance
of those who were involved. It can be viewed by clicking here
In addition, Barracks personnel have pulled duty at "Shangri-La" (now "Camp David") since it was constructed
in the early days of World War II. Because of the number of photos our members have submitted, we have devoted
a separate section of this web site to that most unusual duty assignment. It can be viewed at Camp David
Ceremonies at the Barracks
"8th & I" (Marine Barracks, Washington, DC) is known for its public ceremonies, which are
primarily parades held at the Barracks and at the Iwo Jima Marine War Memorial at Arlington,
VA. Private ceremonies are held for interments at Arlington National Cemetery. The
parades, which last approximately 90 minutes, are the best shows in Washington, featuring the US Marine Band
click here for film clip, the Marine Drum and Bugle
Corps at an Evening Parade click here for film clip as well
as a Sunset Parade at the Marine War Memorial
click here for film clip, and the US Marine Silent
Drill Platoon click here for film clip 1 and
click here for film clip 2.
Don Maurer just found the earliest known video of the Silent Drill
Team! It was taken in 1968, and the first part is in front of Buildng
#58 at the Navy Yard
in Washington, D.C., while preparing for a ceremony in San Antonio, TX.
There is no sound due to a disconnected mike on the video camera. The
second segment was for the funeral of Robert F. Kennedy, first the
assembly and dress right dress. The scene follows with busses in front
of the Union Station, Washington, D.C. As we march off to be stationed
inside the train station. To view
the video clip, click here.
THE FIRST EVENING PARADE
The Silent Drill Team performs at an Evening Parade
On a beautiful
low-humidity evening, more than 180 8th & I Reunion
Association members and their guests attended not only the parade, but also had
dinner together on the previous evening at the Marriott Gun Factory Hotel,
where they were joined by Col. Roy J. Batterton, Jr., XO of the Barracks and
CO of troops for the first Evening Parade.
to see photos of
our members who attended this significant event.
Of interest to all who have served at the Barracks is a
PowerPoint presentation which focuses on the first Evening Parade and life at the Barracks in the mid-1950's. To view this program, turn up your sound and
click here. If you would like to save this presentation on your own computer, right-click on the "click here" line,
and on the drop-down menu select "save target as . . " and then designate the folder in which you would like to save it.
If you do not have Powerpoint, you can download a free viewer here: Powerpoint Viewer
For a three-part, in-depth history of the Evening Parade, click
If you are interested
in attending an Evening Parade at the Barracks, you may call 202-433-6060 or obtain
a reservation on-line, by clicking here.
The Barracks as seen from the air (Google Earth).
A Rare Discovery!
Fifty years after it was written, John Reim's wife just found in their
attic a document of great importance in the history of the Barracks. It is the first
known technical description of the silent drill routine.
We are in the process of
trying to determine who wrote it (apparently in the 1957-58 time frame), and why,
as no previous description has been found. It may be viewed by
"A Significant Retirement at the Barracks!"
Chesty XII has retired! His retirement is featured in a July 11, 2008 article in
US News & World Report entitled "Semper Fido." The article is complete with a handsome photo in his dress blue
and white uniform. To see the article,
Rick Given, a CGC Drill Team member from 1960-63 was featured in the May, 2006
issue of the Marine Corps League's Department of West Virginia State Convention Magazine.
To see the interesting "before and after" coverage of Rick, click
A Secret Service Agent (an old Marine) visited the Barracks for the Evening
Parade on September 8, 2006. To view his stirring account of the evening, especially the
unexpected appearance of Marines who had been wounded in Iraq,
"Slide and Glide - Volume I, 2005"
"Slide and glide" was the order of the day in "The Old Corps."
It refers to the manner in which ceremonial troops
executed the first step of a marching movement, and was
designed to prevent their heads from sinking which normally occurs
in making a full step from a standstill. This would be very
visible to spectators, as the bobbing of heads would be accented by their
white covers on their barracks hats. As its name indicates, it
was executed by sliding the left foot on the ground for a 15" step,
which would allow us to "glide" into the march. It was
quite audible when it was executed on a hard surface due to the
heavy metal cleats on our "ceremonial shoes." The term
"slide" also applied to our manual of arms: instead of "popping"
our rifles into our shoulders (boot camp style), we slid them
(so as to "glide" them) into place smoothly and silently.
"Slide and Glide - Volume I, 2005" is a
collection of stories by former Barracks Marines covering more
than 50 years.
To view "Slide and Glide - Volume I, 2005"
The 8th& I
Reunion Association is a social organization consisting of former United States
Marines, officers and enlisted, who were stationed at the Marine Barracks, 8th&
I Streets, S.E., Washington, DC and the Women Marine Detachment at Henderson Hall,
Arlington, VA whose dedication, professionalism and enthusiasm, contributed so
much to our mission. Please support them by visiting the Women Marines Association. and the Women's Memorial.org
The Marine Barracks 8th&
I Reunion Association is not endorsed by the United States Marine Corps. It is
not or considered to be a 501c(3) Non-profit, Educational Organization
at this time. Contributions are voluntary and are not tax deductible.
We justify our existence as
only being a social group whose purpose is to reestablish and promote
comradeship through periodic reunions and we ask for donations on a strictly
voluntary basis. Time has allowed us to lose touch with our fellow
Marines – thusly – the 8th& I Reunion Association was organized to reunite these friendships. Please visit often as we plan to add more features of interest.
Your response to this site
has been fantastic and we're trying to contact everyone who has responded. It
is so important that we hear from all past members in order that we can
preserve the legacy for those who follow. For those days we all had in the sun...we
were the CORPS!
This site was originally created by Chet Russo
,a VietVet and former member of Ceremonial Guard Company.
In Recognition of our 8th and I Webmasters: Click here
Marine Corps History and Information
USMC Informational Gallery
Read our By-Laws by clicking here.
Contact us at:
8th&I Reunion Association
Are you in contact with an 8th & I Marine who is not a member of the 8th & I
Reunion Association? If so, please encourage that Marine to become a member
(no dues, no meetings, no other obligations). Just click on this link and submit the
requested information, http://8thandi.com/join.html. If that Marine does not have
a computer, please submit the application for that person. Thank you!
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8th & I Reunion Association
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