Friday, March 20, 2009
The First Muster of the National Guard in Salem
(From the right rear of the table, going clockwise around the table and back to the window are: Major Jim Hally
To his left—Major Mike Greene
To his left—Major Glen Tynan
Across from Major Tynan—MS Ray Como
To his left —SSG Fred Vestal
To his left — Captain Christopher Hoffman)
When these gentlemen walked in to the Tavern on Wednesday morning we wondered what was going on, so we asked. It turned out that they were here to inspect the Common, in preparation of the celebration of the anniversary of the First Muster of the National Guard. This celebration will take place on Salem Common on Saturday April 4.
Here is some information that I took from last year's press advisory, since this year's information is not yet available (although I did confirm that the date is correct.)
The Massachusetts National Guard joins the City of Salem Saturday, April 4th at 10 a.m. in celebration of the 371st Anniversary of the First Muster on Salem Common, Salem, Mass.
The celebration consists of a three-part event commemorating five significant events in the history of the Massachusetts National Guard to include the origin of the Army National Guard.
On December 13, 1636, the General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony ordered the organization of the Colony's militia companies into three regiments, specifically the North, South and East Regiments. The Colonists had adopted the English militia system, which obligated males between the ages of 16 and 60, to possess arms and participate in the defense of the community. The early Colonial militia drilled weekly and provided guard details each evening to sound an alarm in case of attack. Strained relations between the Pequot Tribal Nation and the people of the Massachusetts Bay Colony required the militia to maintain a state of readiness. Although the exact date is not known, the very first muster of the East Regiment took place in Salem, Massachusetts in the Spring of 1637.
America’s National Guard heritage can be traced back to the first muster in Salem more than 371 years ago. Today, National Guardsmen from Salem and throughout Massachusetts continue a tradition of service in Afghanistan and Iraq. The North, South, and East Regiments continue to serve the Massachusetts Army National Guard as the 101st Field Artillery Regiment, 101st Engineer Battalion, 181st Infantry Regiment, and 182nd Cavalry Regiment.