Home' Ships and Shipping : April 2011 Contents SHIPMASTERS OF CAPE COD
By HENRY C. KITTREDGE
An oldie but a goodie. This is a paperback
reprint of a book first published in 1935
and then re-issued by the same author and
publisher in 1963. Like its subject, it has
stood the test of time.
For more than two centuries, until just
before the Second World War, New England, comprising the
north-eastern states of the United States of America, was a hot bed
of maritime activity. It inspired considerable technical innovation
and similar adventurousness in voyaging.
Given the content of this wonderful book it is sad that the
region now seems to have completely lost its venturesome
maritime spirit. Now its maritime innovation is almost entirely
confined to naval and yachting developments and there are
precious few of those.
As with its parent, old England, on the other side of the
Atlantic, its glory days are over. This book, though, provides a
wonderful record of its exciting heyday when Cape Cod was one
of the most important centres of the shipping universe.
Available from Parnassus Imprints, Hyannis, USA.
A Celebration of Tradition
for Twenty-First Century
By PHILIP DAWSON
For aficionados of cruise ships there is
arguably no greater line or name than Cunard. Although, as
most keen students of the cruise sector are aware, Cunard is
now really just a brand of the all conquering, Miami based,
Carnival Cruise group.
Anyway, in this day and age, image is everything. Cunard
sounds infinitely more “posh” than Carnival. Its ships look that
way and successfully hone that image.
This beautifully presented little book describing ‘Queen Victoria’,
the latest of the line, certainly burnishes the image further. A
magnificent ship deserves a magnificent book. Ferry Publications
and Philip Dawson have done the ‘Queen Victoria’ proud.
Available from Ferry Publications, Ramsey, UK.
Web: www.ferrypubs.co .uk
NAVY STRATEGIC CULTURE
Why The Navy Thinks Differently
By ROGER W. BARNETT
It is inarguable that the United States Navy
and its associated US Marine Corps have,
over the years, been the most effective of
America’s three main defence forces.
This rather unusual and very thought
provoking little book explains why. It is unfortunate for the
American defence machine that it is unlikely to be widely read by
those members of the US Army and Air Force who could gain the
most from it.
Conversely, though, and fortunately, it probably will gain a
following among officers in the US and other navies. They will
gain much from it, especially if they carefully read the 57 page
appendix “Treasure Chest of Quotations”. That is a brilliant
collection of old and new quotations that explains why navies are
the way they are and why they are so valuable.
Effectively a social/psychoanalysis of the US Navy which shows
how it works and why it is different from the other branches.
Available from the Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, USA.
UNDER EIGHT FLAGS
Vol II 1948-1957
The Next Ten Years at Sea
By ANTHONY F. (TONY) WINSTANLEY
Perhaps better titled “The Life of a
Knockabout Merchant Mariner”, this book
records the grind of life for a young ships
officer in the decade following the Second
The author, who we remember from his previous volume, is
one of those people who only seems to learn from experience. As
he describes here, he has plenty of experience, some of it bitter.
Nevertheless, he shouldered the responsibility of having a
young family to provide for despite almost continued penury. He
tried almost anything, anywhere to make a dollar.
It’s all basic, low-level stuff but the author’s pithy descriptions
of his life make it an interesting record of a peculiar and particular
time. His life wasn’t easy.
Available from Trafford Publishing, Bloomington, USA. Web:
THE INTERNATIONAL LAW
OF THE SHIPMASTER
By JOHN A.C. CARTNER, RICHARD P.
FISKE, TARA L. LEITER
A very thick, very expensive, but most of
all, very important and very valuable
book. It will not, but definitely should, be
carefully studied and kept to hand by
every actual or aspiring shipmaster.
Truly international, indeed global, in scope, its nearly 800 pages
give the unfortunate modern shipmaster an excellent overview of
the myriad laws that govern his profession.
Commanding ships in the current era is an incredibly complex
occupation. All modern shipmasters quite reasonably complain of
the overload of often nonsensical bureaucratic paperwork with
which they are constantly deluged.
Much of that paperwork relates to the ever increasing body of legal
requirements that enfolds their day-to-day activities. Masters must,
therefore, have at least a working knowledge of the laws that affect
them. This very clearly presented book provides them with that.
Available from Informa Law, London, UK. Web: www.informa.com
THE COOLIE SHIPS
AND OIL SAILERS
By BASIL LUBBOCK
Two of the lesser known trades carried out
by sailing ships in the second half of the
nineteenth and first two decades of the
twentieth centuries were in coolie ships
and oil sailers.
The coolie trade commenced in the 1850s after the suppression
of the obnoxious slave trade. It involved the relatively humane
transport of indentured labourers from, mostly, India and China to
Mauritius, Trinidad, Fiji, Cuba, Malaysia, Peru and other places.
The Indian coolie trade appears to have been a cut above the
Chinese in terms of care of the human cargo. The trade lasted until
about the turn of the century when the world seemed to become a
little more civilised.
About the same time a trade developed using large, four masted,
iron and steel ships as low cost tankers. They carried kerosene and
other refined oils in cans. A massive stevedoring requirement.
These were difficult ships to handle and the author describes their
problems very well. Mostly they were due to under-manning.
While reasonably fast, crewing and other costs led to their
demise. Nevertheless, both trades were full of action and adventure
which the author describes very picturesquely.
Available from Brown, Son & Ferguson, Glasgow, UK. (One of a specially
priced set of fifteen Lubbock books) Web: www.skipper.co.uk
April 2011 SHIPS AND SHIPPING
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