11 General Orders of a Sentry

Marine Corps Version

USMC standing watch
Helmond Provice. Gettys

One of the first things you will learn in the United States Military is how to stand duty.  You will also be required to recite verbatim the General Orders of the Sentry. This is a vital but most basic function of the military.

The General Orders of a Sentry is a list of rules a military member must know verbatim and practice while standing duty (or watch).  All guard posts have rules to follow and the 11 General Orders are detailed but universal to all military members.

 You will have to learn these General Orders when you arrive at Basic Training, so get a head start before you arrive for Day 1 of Boot Camp.

The Eleven General Orders of a Sentry as required in Marine Corps Boot Camp (and after, when performing sentry duty).

This is slightly different than the Navy Version (mostly because ranks and titles differ between the Navy and USMC), and even more different than the Army Version.

1. Take charge of this post and all government property in view.

2. Walk my post in a military manner, keeping always on the alert and observing everything that takes place within sight or hearing.

3. Report all violations of orders I am instructed to enforce.

4. To repeat all calls [from posts]more distant from the guardhouse than my own.

5. Quit my post only when properly relieved.

6. To receive, obey, and pass on to the sentry who relieves me, all orders from the Commanding Officer, Officer of the Day, Officers, and Non-Commissioned Officers of the guard only.

7. Talk to no one except in the line of duty.

8. Give the alarm in case of fire or disorder.

9. To call the Corporal of the Guard in any case not covered by instructions.

10. Salute all officers and all colors and standards not cased.

11. Be especially watchful at night and during the time for challenging, to challenge all persons on or near my post, and to allow no one to pass without proper authority.

If you are standing watch (duty) for the first time,  as long as you know these eleven basic orders, you will be able to perform the task without issue.  The last thing you want is an Article 113 of the UCMJ.  Take the General Orders seriously.There will be times you will be challenged by higher ranking members in the military, but the General Orders of the Sentry give you the authority over any member no following the rules and regulations of that post. The one thing you want to avoid is complacency as there is a saying, "Complacency Kills".  Stay alert, vigilant, and do your duty to keep the post you are guarding secure.  

The terms standing watch, guard duty, standing duty, guarding my post are all synonymous with sentry duty  


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