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View Diary: U.S.S. Constitution (91 comments)

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  •  My old customer Harry Meadowcroft (8+ / 0-)

    worked up from deckhand to captain; when he started, old-timers told him that the way the rigging was set up on the sailing ships, you really couldn't fall off (!), but you also couldn't wear gloves and so their hands would get so thickly calloused that they couldn't move their fingers very much.

    He was a real union man; said in WW2 the Navy, East-coast Patrician at that time, looked down on the merchant marine making the Atlantic run (Meadowcroft was on the Pacific one, but knew a lot of guys who died on the Atlantic), even though those sailors' job was more dangerous than just about anything you could do in the military, because they saw them as low-class Union types.

    It still pissed him off fifty years later! Ah, that's the fire I love to see in a Democrat.

    •  My Dad did a couple of summers... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chimpy, mookins, revbludge

      on the Great Lakes on an ore carrier post War.

      Not exactly camp.

      •  Lake "boats"... (6+ / 0-)

        I did a season as a deckhand on the Enders M. Vorheess, Pittsburgh Steamship Co., 1967/8;  630' super.

        Shipped in out as a 19 year old kid; laid up at Christmas older and wiser.  The captain, as we left the ship said, "Go back to college kid...."

        Labor was the first price paid for all things. It was not by money, but by labour, that all wealth of the world was originally purchased. - Adam Smith

        by boatwright on Mon Aug 20, 2012 at 07:52:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Here's my favorite Trivia question (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ek hornbeck, mookins

      Which President signed the executive order making the Merchant Marine veterans?

      Ans: William Jefferson Clinton.

      The Merchant Marine in WW II lost more men than the Marine Corps. If you make a list of the 10 most important machines of WW II and the Liberty Ship ain't on it, your list is wrong.

      "If I pay a man enough money to buy my car, he'll buy my car." Henry Ford

      by johnmorris on Mon Aug 20, 2012 at 03:16:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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