Sailor
Overview
"Boatmen" redirects here. It may also refer to a nickname for the Toronto Argonauts
Toronto Argonauts
The Toronto Argonauts are a professional Canadian football team competing in the East Division of the Canadian Football League. The Toronto, Ontario based team was founded in 1873 and is one of the oldest existing professional sports teams in North America, after the Chicago Cubs and the Atlanta...

 of the Canadian Football League.

A sailor, mariner, or seaman is a person who navigates water-borne vessels or assists in their operation, maintenance, or service. The term can apply to professional mariners, military personnel, and recreational sailors as well as a plethora of other uses.
Encyclopedia
"Boatmen" redirects here. It may also refer to a nickname for the Toronto Argonauts
Toronto Argonauts
The Toronto Argonauts are a professional Canadian football team competing in the East Division of the Canadian Football League. The Toronto, Ontario based team was founded in 1873 and is one of the oldest existing professional sports teams in North America, after the Chicago Cubs and the Atlanta...

 of the Canadian Football League.

A sailor, mariner, or seaman is a person who navigates water-borne vessels or assists in their operation, maintenance, or service. The term can apply to professional mariners, military personnel, and recreational sailors as well as a plethora of other uses. Etymologically, the name preserves the memory of the time when ships were commonly powered by sail
Sail
A sail is any type of surface intended to move a vessel, vehicle or rotor by being placed in a wind—in essence a propulsion wing. Sails are used in sailing.-History of sails:...

s, but it applies to the personnel of all vessels, whatever their mode of locomotion.

Professional mariners hold a variety of professions and ranks which are fairly standard, with the exception of slight naming differences around the world. Common categories by department include the Deck department
Deck department
The Deck Department is an organizational unit aboard naval and merchant ships. A Deck Officer is an officer serving in the deck department.-Merchant shipping:...

, the Engineering department, and the Steward's department. Mariners can also be categorized by status as senior licensed mariner
Licensed mariner
A licensed mariner is a person who holds a license issued by one or more countries to hold senior positions aboard ships, boats, and similar vessels. The United States Coast Guard grants licenses to members of the United States Merchant Marine in five categories: deck officers, engineers, staff...

s or unlicensed mariners.

A number of professional mariners have left the industry and led noteworthy lives in the naval services or on the shore. For example, Traian Băsescu
Traian Basescu
Traian Băsescu is the current President of Romania. After serving as the mayor of Bucharest from June 2000 until December 2004, he was elected president in the Romanian Presidential Elections of 2004 and inaugurated on December 20, 2004...

 started his career as a third mate
Third Mate
A Third Mate or Third Officer is a licensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. The third mate is a watchstander and customarily the ship's safety officer and fourth-in-command...

 in 1976 and is now the President
President of Romania
The President of Romania is the head of state of Romania. The President is directly elected by a two-round system for a five-year term . An individual may serve two terms...

 of Romania
Romania
Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe, on the Lower Danube, within and outside the Carpathian arch, bordering on the Black Sea...

. Arthur Phillip
Arthur Phillip
Admiral Arthur Phillip RN was a British admiral and colonial administrator. Phillip was appointed Governor of New South Wales, the first European colony on the Australian continent, and was the founder of the settlement which is now the city of Sydney.-Early life and naval career:Arthur Phillip...

 joined the Merchant Navy in 1751 and 37 years later founded Sydney, Australia. Merchant mariner Douglass North
Douglass North
Douglass Cecil North is an American economist known for his work in economic history. He is the co-recipient of the 1993 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences...

 went from seaman to navigator to winning the 1993 Nobel Prize in Economics.

Professional mariners

Seafarers hold a variety of professions and ranks, each of which carries unique responsibilities which are integral to the successful operation of an ocean-going vessel. A ship's crew can generally be divided into four main categories: the deck department, the engineering department, the steward's department, and other.

Deck department

Officer positions in the deck department
Deck department
The Deck Department is an organizational unit aboard naval and merchant ships. A Deck Officer is an officer serving in the deck department.-Merchant shipping:...

 include but are not limited to: Master
Master mariner
A Master Mariner or MM is the professional qualification required for someone to serve as the person in charge or person in command of a commercial vessel. In England, the term Master Mariner has been in use at least since the 13th century, reflecting the fact that in guild or livery company terms,...

 and his Chief
Chief Mate
A Chief Mate or Chief Officer, usually also synonymous with the First Mate or First Officer , is a licensed member and head of the deck department of a merchant ship...

, Second
Second Mate
A second mate or second officer is a licensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. The second mate is the third in command and a watchkeeping officer, customarily the ship's navigator. Other duties vary, but the second mate is often the medical officer and in charge of maintaining...

, and Third
Third Mate
A Third Mate or Third Officer is a licensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. The third mate is a watchstander and customarily the ship's safety officer and fourth-in-command...

 officers. The official classifications for unlicensed members of the deck department are Able seaman
Able seaman
An able seaman is an unlicensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. An AB may work as a watchstander, a day worker, or a combination of these roles.-Watchstander:...

 and Ordinary seaman. With some variation, the Chief Mate is most often charged with the duties of Cargo Mate. Second Mates are charged with being the medical officer, in case of medical emergency. All Three mates each do Four-Hour AM and PM shifts on the bridge, when underway at sea.

A common deck crew for a ship includes:
  • (1) Chief Officer
    Chief Mate
    A Chief Mate or Chief Officer, usually also synonymous with the First Mate or First Officer , is a licensed member and head of the deck department of a merchant ship...

    /Chief Mate
  • (1) Second Officer
    Second Mate
    A second mate or second officer is a licensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. The second mate is the third in command and a watchkeeping officer, customarily the ship's navigator. Other duties vary, but the second mate is often the medical officer and in charge of maintaining...

     /Second Mate
  • (1) Third Officer
    Third Mate
    A Third Mate or Third Officer is a licensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. The third mate is a watchstander and customarily the ship's safety officer and fourth-in-command...

     / Third Mate
  • (1) Cadet/Officer Cadet
  • (1) Boatswain
    Boatswain
    A boatswain , bo's'n, bos'n, or bosun is an unlicensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. The boatswain supervises the other unlicensed members of the ship's deck department, and typically is not a watchstander, except on vessels with small crews...

  • (2-8) Able seamen
  • (0-3) Ordinary seamen

Engineering department

A ship's engineering department consists of the members of a ship's crew that operates and maintains the propulsion and other systems onboard the vessel. Marine engineering staff also deal with the "hotel" facilities onboard, notably the sewage
Sewage
Sewage is water-carried waste, in solution or suspension, that is intended to be removed from a community. Also known as wastewater, it is more than 99% water and is characterized by volume or rate of flow, physical condition, chemical constituents and the bacteriological organisms that it contains...

, lighting, air conditioning
Air conditioning
An air conditioner is a home appliance, system, or mechanism designed to dehumidify and extract heat from an area. The cooling is done using a simple refrigeration cycle...

 and water systems. Engineering staff manage bulk fuel transfers, from a fuel-supply barge in port. When underway at sea, the second and third engineers will often be occupied with oil transfers from storage tanks, to active working tanks; Cleaning of oil purifiers is another regular task. Engineering staff are requireed to have training in firefighting and first aid. Additional duties include maintaining the ship's boats and performing other nautical tasks. Engineers play a key role in cargo loading/discharging gear and safety systems, though the specific cargo discharge function remains the responsibility of deck officers and deck workers.

A common engineering crew for a ship includes:
  • (1) Chief Engineer
    Chief Engineer
    In marine transportation, the chief engineer is a licensed mariner in charge of the engineering department on a merchant vessel. "Chief engineer" is the official title of someone qualified to oversee the entire engine department; the qualification is colloquially called a "chief's...

  • (1) Second Engineer / First Assistant Engineer
  • (1) Third Engineer / Second Assistant Engineer
  • (1-2) Fourth Engineer / Third Assistant Engineer
  • (0-2) Fifth Engineer / Junior Engineer
  • (1-3) QMED (unlicensed qualified rating: Qualified member Engine Dept.)
  • (1-3) Oiler
    Oiler (occupation)
    An oiler is a worker whose main job is to oil machinery. In previous eras there were oiler positions in various industries, including maritime work , railroading, steelmaking, and mining...

     (unlicensed qualified rating)
  • (0-3) Greaser/s (unlicensed qualified rating)
  • (1-5) Entry-level rating (such as Wiper (occupation)
    Wiper (occupation)
    A wiper is the most junior crewmember in the engine room of a ship. The role of a wiper consists of cleaning the engine spaces and machinery, and assisting the engineers as directed....

    , Utilityman, etc.)


American ships also carry a Qualified Member of the Engine Department
Qualified Member of the Engine Department
A Qualified Member of the Engineering Department also known as an Unlicensed Junior Engineer or QMED is a senior unlicensed crewmember in the engine room of a ship. The QMED performs a variety of tasks connected with the maintenance and repair of engine room, fireroom, machine shop, ice-machine...

. Other possible positions include Motorman, Machinist
Machinist
A machinist is a person who uses machine tools to make or modify parts, primarily metal parts, a process known as machining. This is accomplished by using machine tools to cut away excess material much as a woodcarver cuts away excess wood to produce his work. In addition to metal, the parts may...

, Electrician
Electrician
An electrician is a tradesman specializing in electrical wiring of buildings, stationary machines and related equipment. Electricians may be employed in the installation of new electrical components or the maintenance and repair of existing electrical infrastructure. Electricians may also...

, Refrigeration Engineer, and Tankerman.

Steward's department

A typical Steward's department for a cargo ship is a Chief Steward
Chief Steward
A chief steward is the senior unlicensed crew member working in the Steward's Department of a ship. Since there is no purser on most ships in the United States Merchant Marine, the steward is the senior person in the department, whence its name...

, a Chief Cook
Chief Cook
A chief cook is a senior unlicensed crewmember working in the steward's department of a merchant ship.The chief cook directs and participates in the preparation and serving of meals; determines timing and sequence of operations required to meet serving times; inspects galley and equipment for...

, and a Steward's Assistant
Steward's Assistant
A steward's assistant is an unlicensed, entry-level crewmember in the Steward's department of a merchant ship. This position can also be referred to as steward , galley utilityman, messman, supply or waiter.The role of the SA consists mainly of stocking, cleaning and assisting with the...

. All three positions are typically filled by unlicensed personnel.

The chief steward directs, instructs, and assigns personnel performing such functions as preparing and serving meals; cleaning and maintaining officers' quarters and steward department areas; and receiving, issuing, and inventorying stores.

The chief steward also plans menus; compiles supply, overtime, and cost control records. The steward may requisition or purchase stores and equipment. Galley roles may include baking.

A chief steward's duties may overlap with those of the Steward's Assistant
Steward's Assistant
A steward's assistant is an unlicensed, entry-level crewmember in the Steward's department of a merchant ship. This position can also be referred to as steward , galley utilityman, messman, supply or waiter.The role of the SA consists mainly of stocking, cleaning and assisting with the...

, the Chief Cook
Chief Cook
A chief cook is a senior unlicensed crewmember working in the steward's department of a merchant ship.The chief cook directs and participates in the preparation and serving of meals; determines timing and sequence of operations required to meet serving times; inspects galley and equipment for...

, and other Steward's Department crewmembers.

A person has to have a Merchant Mariner's Document
Merchant Mariner's Document
Countries with a Merchant Navy or Merchant Marine require identifying credentials for their mariners. The Merchant Mariner's Document or Z-card in the United States, and the Ordinary Seaman's Certificate in the United Kingdom are examples of these credentials.-United Kingdom:An Ordinary Seaman...

 issued by the United States Coast Guard
United States Coast Guard
The United States Coast Guard is a branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven U.S. uniformed services. The Coast Guard is a maritime, military, multi-mission service unique among the military branches for having a maritime law enforcement mission and a federal regulatory agency...

 in the United States Merchant Marine
United States Merchant Marine
The United States Merchant Marine refers to the fleet of U.S. civilian-owned merchant vessels, operated by either the government or the private sector, that engage in commerce or transportation of goods and services in and out of the navigable waters of the United States. The Merchant Marine is...

 in order to serve as a chief steward. All chief cooks who sail internationally are similarly documented by their respective countries because of international conventions and agreements.

The only time that Steward Department staff are charged with duties outside the Steward department, is during the execution of the Fire and Boat Drill.

Other departments

Various types of staff officer positions may exist on board a ship, including Junior Assistant Purser, Senior Assistant Purser, Purser
Purser
The purser joined the warrant officer ranks of the Royal Navy in the early fourteenth century and existed as a Naval rank until 1852. The development of the warrant officer system began in 1040 when five English ports began furnishing warships to King Edward the Confessor in exchange for certain...

, Chief Purser, Medical Doctor, Professional Nurse, Marine Physician Assistant, and Hospital Corpsman. These jobs are considered administrative positions and are therefore regulated by Certificates of Registry issued by the United States Coast Guard. Pilots are also merchant marine officers and are licensed by the Coast Guard.

Working conditions

Standard merchant watch system
Day 1 Day 2 Day 3
4am-8am Team 1 Team 1 Team 1
8am-12pm Team 2 Team 2 Team 2
12pm-4pm Team 3 Team 3 Team 3
4pm-8pm Team 1 Team 1 Team 1
8pm-12am Team 2 Team 2 Team 2
12am-4am Team 3 Team 3 Team 3
Mariners spend extended periods at sea. Most deep-sea mariners are hired for one or more voyages that last for several months. There is no job security after that. The length of time between voyages varies by job availability and personal preference.

The rate of unionization for these workers in the United States is about 36 percent, much higher than the average for all occupations. Consequently, merchant marine officers and seamen, both veterans and beginners, are hired for voyages through union hiring halls or directly by shipping companies. Hiring halls fill jobs by the length of time the person has been registered at the hall and by their union seniority. Hiring halls typically are found in major seaports.

At sea, on larger vessels members of the deck department usually stand watch for 4 hours and are off for 8 hours, 7 days a week.

Mariners work in all weather conditions. Working in damp and cold conditions often is inevitable, although ships try to avoid severe storms while at sea. It is uncommon for modern vessels to suffer disasters such as fire, explosion, or a sinking. Yet workers face the possibility of having to abandon ship on short notice if it collides with other vessels or runs aground. Mariners also risk injury or death from falling overboard and from hazards associated with working with machinery, heavy loads, and dangerous cargo. However, modern safety management procedures, advanced emergency communications, and effective international rescue systems place modern mariners in a much safer position.

Most newer vessels are air conditioned, soundproofed from noisy machinery, and equipped with comfortable living quarters. These amenities have helped ease the sometimes difficult circumstances of long periods away from home. Also, modern communications, especially email, link modern mariners to their families. Nevertheless, some mariners dislike the long periods away from home and the confinement aboard ship. They consequently leave the profession.

Life at sea

Professional mariners live on the margins of society, with much of their life spent beyond the reach of land. They face cramped, stark, noisy, and dangerous conditions at sea. Yet men and women still go to sea. For some, the attraction is a life unencumbered with the restraints of life ashore. Sea-going adventure and a chance to see the world also appeal to many seafarers. Whatever the calling, those who live and work at sea invariably confront social isolation.

Findings by the Seafarer's International Research Center indicate a leading cause of mariners leaving the industry is "almost invariably because they want to be with their families." U.S. merchant ships typically do not allow family members to accompany seafarers on voyages. Industry experts increasingly recognize isolation, stress, and fatigue as occupational hazards. Advocacy groups such as International Labor Organization, a United Nations agency, and the Nautical Institute seek improved international standards for mariners.

One’s service aboard ships typically extends for months at a time, followed by protracted shore leave. However, some seamen secure jobs on ships they like and stay aboard for years. In rare cases, veteran mariners choose never to go ashore when in port.

Further, the quick turnaround of many modern ships, spending only a matter of hours in port, limits a seafarer's free-time ashore. Moreover, some seafarers entering U.S. ports from a watch list of 25 countries deemed high-risk face restrictions on shore leave due to security concerns in a post 9/11 environment. However, shore leave restrictions while in U.S. ports impact American seamen as well. For example, the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots
International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots
The International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots or MM&P is a United States labor union representing licensed mariners. It is the marine division of the International Longshoremen's Association....

 notes a trend of U.S. shipping terminal operators restricting seamen from traveling from the ship to the terminal gate. Further, in cases where transit is allowed, special "security fees" are at times assessed.

Such restrictions on shore leave coupled with reduced time in port by many ships translate into longer periods at sea. Mariners report that extended periods at sea living and working with shipmates who for the most part are strangers takes getting used to. At the same time, there is an opportunity to meet people from a wide range of ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Recreational opportunities have improved aboard some U.S. ships, which may feature gyms and day rooms for watching movies, swapping sea stories, and other activities. And in some cases, especially tankers, it is made possible for a mariner to be accompanied by members of his family. However, a mariner’s off duty time at sea is largely a solitary affair, pursuing hobbies, reading, writing letters, and sleeping.

Notable mariners

Barbarossa Hayrettin Pasha (Turkish: Barbaros Hayrettin Paşa or Hızır Hayrettin Paşa; also Hızır Reis before being promoted to the rank of Pasha and becoming the Kaptan-ı Derya (Fleet Admiral) of the Ottoman Navy) (c. 1478 – 4 July 1546) was an Ottoman admiral who dominated the Mediterranean for decades. He was born on the island of Lesbos/ Mytilini and died in Istanbul, the Ottoman capital.

Merchant seamen have gone on to make their mark on the world in a number of interesting ways. Traian Băsescu
Traian Basescu
Traian Băsescu is the current President of Romania. After serving as the mayor of Bucharest from June 2000 until December 2004, he was elected president in the Romanian Presidential Elections of 2004 and inaugurated on December 20, 2004...

, who started his career as a third mate
Third Mate
A Third Mate or Third Officer is a licensed member of the deck department of a merchant ship. The third mate is a watchstander and customarily the ship's safety officer and fourth-in-command...

 in 1976 is now the President of Romania
Romania
Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe, on the Lower Danube, within and outside the Carpathian arch, bordering on the Black Sea...

. Arthur Phillip
Arthur Phillip
Admiral Arthur Phillip RN was a British admiral and colonial administrator. Phillip was appointed Governor of New South Wales, the first European colony on the Australian continent, and was the founder of the settlement which is now the city of Sydney.-Early life and naval career:Arthur Phillip...

 joined the Merchant Navy in 1751 and 37 years later founded the city of Sydney, Australia. Merchant mariner Douglass North
Douglass North
Douglass Cecil North is an American economist known for his work in economic history. He is the co-recipient of the 1993 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences...

 went from seaman to navigator to winner of the 1993 Nobel Prize in Economics. Jimmy Carter
Jimmy Carter
James Earl "Jimmy" Carter, Jr. is an American politician who served as the 39th President of the United States and was the recipient of the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize, the only U.S. President to have received the Prize after leaving office...

 went on to become the 39th President of the United States after service in the US Navy.

Members of the British Merchant Navy have won the Distinguished Service Cross, and have had careers taking them from 'Deck Boy Peter' to Air Marshal Sir Beresford Peter Torrington Horsley KCB, CBE, LVO, AFC
Peter Horsley
Air Marshal Sir Beresford Peter Torrington Horsley KCB, CBE, LVO, AFC was a senior Royal Air Force commander.-Early life:...

. Canadian merchant seamen have won the Victoria Cross
Philip Bent
Lieutenant Colonel Philip Eric Bent VC DSO was a Canadian recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.-Biography:...

 and the Medal of Honor
Charles Andrew MacGillivary
Charles Andrew MacGillivary was a Medal of Honor recipient, born in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada...

. American merchant seamen have won the Medal of Honor in the Korean War
George H. O'Brien, Jr.
George Herman O'Brien, Jr. was a United States Marine Corps officer who received the Medal of Honor, the United States's highest military decoration, for his actions during the Korean War.-Biography:...

 and Vietnam War
Lawrence Joel
Lawrence Joel was a United States Army Sergeant First Class who served in the Korean and Vietnam Wars...

, and one went on to become the "Father of the American Navy."
John Paul Jones
John Paul Jones was a Scottish sailor and the United States' first well-known naval fighter in the American Revolutionary War. Although he made enemies among America's political elites, his actions in British waters during the Revolution earned him an international reputation which persists to...

  One doesn't have to look far to find merchant seamen who became war heroes in Scotland
David Broadfoot
David Broadfoot GC was a Scottish seaman. He was awarded the George Cross for his role during the sinking of the Princess Victoria.He was born in Stranraer, Scotland and served in the merchant navy during World War II....

, France, New Zealand
William Edward Sanders
William Edward Sanders VC, DSO was a New Zealander recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces....

, Peru
Miguel Grau Seminario
Miguel María Grau Seminario was a renowned Peruvian naval officer and hero of the Naval Battle of Angamos during the War of the Pacific . He was known as the el Caballero de los Mares for his chivalry and is esteemed by both Peruvians and Chileans...

, or Denmark
Kim Malthe-Bruun
Kim Malthe-Bruun was a member of the Danish resistance captured and killed during World War II.He was born in Fort Saskatchewan, Canada. At the age of nine, Kim, his six-year-old sister Ruth, and his mother moved back to Denmark, where she was originally from. He grew up a peasant, but by the...

.

Since World War II, a number of merchant seamen have become notorious criminals. American William Colepaugh
William Colepaugh
William Curtis Colepaugh was an American who, following his 1943 discharge from the US Naval Reserve , defected to Nazi Germany in 1944. While a crewman on a United States Merchant Marine ship that stopped off in Lisbon, Colepaugh defected at the German consulate...

 was convicted as a Nazi spy in World War II and Fritz Sauckel
Fritz Sauckel
Ernst Friedrich Christoph "Fritz" Sauckel was a Nazi war criminal, who organized the systematic enslavement of millions from lands occupied by Nazi Germany...

 was convicted as a Nazi war criminal. Briton Duncan Scott-Ford
Duncan Scott-Ford
Duncan Alexander Croall Scott-Ford was a British merchant seaman who was hanged for treachery after giving information to an enemy agent during World War II.-Family origins:...

 was hanged for treachery in World War II. George Hennard was an American mass murderer who claimed 24 victims on a rampage at Luby's Cafeteria in Killeen, Texas
Killeen, Texas
Killeen is a city in Bell County, Texas, The United States. The population was 86,911 at the 2000 census. As of 2009, Killeen had 119,510 people. In 2010 Killeen's population shot to 127,921...

. And Perry Smith's
Perry Smith (murderer)
Perry Edward Smith was one of two ex-convicts who murdered four members of the Clutter family in Holcomb, Kansas, United States on November 15, 1959, a crime made famous by Truman Capote in his 1966 non-fiction novel In Cold Blood.-Family and early life:Perry Edward Smith was born in Huntington,...

 own murderous rampage was made famous in Truman Capote
Truman Capote
Truman Streckfus Persons , known as Truman Capote , was an American author, many of whose short stories, novels, plays, and nonfiction are recognized literary classics, including the novella Breakfast at Tiffany's and the true crime novel In Cold Blood , which he labeled a "nonfiction novel." At...

's non-fiction novel
Non-fiction novel
The non-fiction novel is a literary genre which, broadly speaking, depicts real historical figures and actual events narrated woven together with fictitious allegations and using the storytelling techniques of fiction. The non-fiction novel is an otherwise loosely-defined and flexible genre...

 In Cold Blood.
In Cold Blood
In Cold Blood is a 1966 book by Truman Capote.In Cold Blood may also refer to:* In Cold Blood , a 1967 film and 1996 miniseries, both based on the book* In Cold Blood...



Mariners are well represented in the visual arts. French pilot's assistant Paul Gauguin
Paul Gauguin
Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin was a leading French Post-Impressionist artist. He was an important figure in the Symbolist movement as a painter, sculptor, print-maker, ceramist, and writer...

 would later become a leading post-impressionist painter and pioneered modern art's synthetist style. American seaman Haskell Wexler
Haskell Wexler
Haskell Wexler, A.S.C. is an American cinematographer, film producer, and director. Wexler was judged to be one of film history's ten most influential cinematographers in a survey of the members of the International Cinematographers Guild.-Early life and education:Wexler was born to a Jewish...

 later won two Academy Awards, the latter for a biography of his shipmate Woody Guthrie
Woody Guthrie
Woodrow Wilson "Woody" Guthrie is best known as an American singer-songwriter and folk musician, whose musical legacy includes hundreds of political, traditional and children's songs, ballads and improvised works. He frequently performed with the slogan This Machine Kills Fascists displayed on his...

. British Merchant Navy member Ken Russell
Ken Russell
Henry Kenneth Alfred "Ken" Russell was an English film director, known for his pioneering work in television and film and for his flamboyant and controversial style. He attracted criticism as being obsessed with sexuality and the church...

 later directed films such as Tommy
Tommy
Tommy is a given name that is usually the English diminutive of Thomas. The name also could refer to:- People with the given name Tommy :* Tommy Alcedo , Venezuelan road cyclist* Tommy G...

, Altered States
Altered States
Altered States is a 1980 American science fiction-horror film adaptation of a novel by the same name by playwright and screenwriter Paddy Chayefsky. It was the only novel that Chayefsky ever wrote, as well as his final film. Both the novel and the film are based on John C...

, and The Lair of the White Worm
The Lair of the White Worm (film)
The Lair of the White Worm is a 1988 film based loosely on the novel by Bram Stoker of the same name and drawing upon the English myth of the Lambton Worm...

. Merchant seaman Johnny Craig was already a working comic book artist before he joined up, but Ernie Schroeder
Ernie Schroeder
Ernest C. "Ernie" Schroeder was an American comic book artist and a commercial illustrator and sculptor, best known for drawing and co-writing Hillman Periodicals' influential muck-monster the Heap from 1949 to 1953....

 wouldn't start drawing comics until after returning home from World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

.

Merchant sailors have also made a splash in the world of sport. In football, with Fred Blackburn
Fred Blackburn (footballer)
Frederick Blackburn was an English footballer.Fred Blackburn played for his home-town club of Blackburn Rovers, playing as an outside left, and featured for the team at the age of 17....

 in England and the likes of Dan Devine
Dan Devine
Daniel John Devine was an American football player and coach. He served as the head coach football coach at Arizona State University from 1955 to 1957, the University of Missouri from 1958 to 1970, and the University of Notre Dame from 1975 to 1980, compiling a career college football mark of...

 and Heisman Trophy winner Frank Sinkwich
Frank Sinkwich
Frank Francis Sinkwich Sr. won the 1942 Heisman Trophy as a player for the University of Georgia, making him the first recipient from the Southeastern Conference. In the course of a brief but celebrated career in professional football, Sinkwich was selected for the National Football League Most...

 in the U.S. In track and field, American seamen Cornelius Johnson and Jim Thorpe
Jim Thorpe
Jacobus Franciscus "Jim" Thorpe * Gerasimo and Whiteley. pg. 28 * americaslibrary.gov, accessed April 23, 2007. was an American athlete of mixed ancestry...

 both won Olympic medals, though Thorpe didn't get his until 30 years after his death. Seamen Jim Bagby, Jr.
Jim Bagby, Jr.
James Charles Jacob Bagby, Jr. was a starting pitcher in Major League Baseball who played for the Boston Red Sox , Cleveland Indians and Pittsburgh Pirates . He batted and threw right-handed...

 and Charlie Keller
Charlie Keller
Charles Ernest "Charlie" Keller was a left fielder in Major League Baseball. From 1939 through 1952, Keller played for the New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers...

 went on to Major League Baseball. Drew Bundini Brown
Drew Bundini Brown
Drew Bundini Brown was an assistant trainer and cornerman of Muhammad Ali throughout the former heavyweight champion's career, as well as occasional film actor.-Personal life:...

 was Muhammad Ali's assistant trainer and cornerman, and Joe Gold
Joe Gold
Joe Gold was the founder of Gold's Gym and World Gym...

 went on to make his fortune as the bodybuilding and fitness guru of Gold's Gym
Gold's Gym
Gold's Gym International, Inc. is an international chain of co-ed fitness centers originally started in California by Joe Gold. Each gym features a wide array of exercise equipment, group exercise classes and personal trainers to assist clients...

.

Other sporting notables include Edwin Stratton
Edwin Stratton
Edwin William James Stratton was a British aikido teacher and the founder of Yoshinkan UK, and the Shudokan Institute of Aikido International.-External links:**-Sources:...

 the founder of Yoshinkan UK, Dutchman Henk de Velde
Henk de Velde
Henk de Velde is a Dutch seafarer. He is especially known for his long solo-voyages around the world....

 known for sailing solo around the world, and Briton Matthew Webb
Matthew Webb
Captain Matthew Webb was the first recorded person to swim the English Channel without the use of artificial aids. On 25 August 1875 he swam from Dover to Calais in less than 22 hours.-Early life and career:...

 who was the first person to swim the English Channel
English Channel
The English Channel , often referred to simply as the Channel, is an arm of the Atlantic Ocean that separates southern England from northern France, and joins the North Sea to the Atlantic. It is about long and varies in width from at its widest to in the Strait of Dover...

 without the use of artificial aid.

Irish Merchant Navy member Kevin McClory
Kevin McClory
Kevin O'Donovan McClory was an Irish screenwriter, producer, and director. McClory was best known for the 1983 James Bond film Never Say Never Again, which was the result of a long legal battle between McClory and Ian Fleming over the writing credits and later the film rights to...

 spent 14 days in a lifeboat and later went on to write the James Bond movies Never Say Never Again and Thunderball. Members of the American Beat Movement Allen Ginsberg
Allen Ginsberg
Irwin Allen Ginsberg was an American poet and one of the leading figures of the Beat Generation in the 1950s. He vigorously opposed militarism, materialism and sexual repression...

, Jack Kerouac
Jack Kerouac
Jean-Louis "Jack" Lebris de Kerouac was an American novelist and poet. He is considered a literary iconoclast and, alongside William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg, a pioneer of the Beat Generation. Kerouac is recognized for his spontaneous method of writing, covering topics such as Catholic...

, Bob Kaufman
Bob Kaufman
Bob Kaufman , born Robert Garnell Kaufman, was an American Beat poet and surrealist inspired by jazz music. In France, where his poetry had a large following, he was known as the "American Rimbaud."-Biography:...

, and Herbert Huncke
Herbert Huncke
Herbert Edwin Huncke was a writer and poet, and active participant in a number of emerging cultural, social and aesthetic movements of the 20th century in America...

 were all Merchant Mariners.

It's perhaps not surprising that the writers of Moby Dick
Herman Melville
Herman Melville was an American novelist, short story writer, essayist, and poet. He is best known for his novel Moby-Dick and the posthumous novella Billy Budd....

, The American Practical Navigator
Nathaniel Bowditch
Nathaniel Bowditch was an early American mathematician remembered for his work on ocean navigation. He is often credited as the founder of modern maritime navigation; his book The New American Practical Navigator, first published in 1802, is still carried on board every commissioned U.S...

, and Two Years Before the Mast
Richard Henry Dana, Jr.
Richard Henry Dana Jr. was an American lawyer and politician from Massachusetts, a descendant of an eminent colonial family who gained renown as the author of the American classic, the memoir Two Years Before the Mast...

 were Merchant Mariners. It might be surprising that the writers of Borat
Peter Baynham
Peter Baynham is a screenwriter and a British comedian, writer, and performer. He often collaborates with Armando Iannucci and Chris Morris and has worked with Stewart Lee and Richard Herring. He is first heard on Morris' early radio DJ slots, often going out to places...

, A Hard Day's Night
Alun Owen
Alun Owen was a British screenwriter, predominantly active in television, but best remembered by a wider audience for writing the screenplay of The Beatles' debut feature film A Hard Day's Night ....

, and Cool Hand Luke
Donn Pearce
Donn Pearce is an American author best known for the novel and screen play Cool Hand Luke.Born Donald Mills Pearce in a suburb of Philadelphia, Pearce left home at 15. He attempted to join the United States Merchant Marine at 16, but was turned away due to his age. He lied about his age,...

were.

Seamen always complain about leaving their girl friends ashore, but imagine how James Dougherty felt, leaving his 17-year-old wife Marilyn Monroe on the beach. Merchant Navy steward Freddie Lennon had a surprise when he returned home to find he had a newborn son. That son would later found the musical group The Beatles
The Beatles
The Beatles were an English rock band, active throughout the 1960s and one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music. Formed in Liverpool, by 1962 the group consisted of John Lennon , Paul McCartney , George Harrison and Ringo Starr...

.

A number of U.S. Merchant Mariners from World War II later played well known television characters. The list includes Milburn Drysdale
Raymond Bailey
Raymond Thomas Bailey was an American actor on the Broadway stage, movies, and television. He is best known for his role as wealthy banker, Milburn Drysdale, in the television series The Beverly Hillbillies....

 on The Beverly Hillbillies, Archie Bunker
Carroll O'Connor
John Carroll O'Connor best known as Carroll O'Connor, was an American actor, producer and director whose television career spanned four decades...

 on All in the Family, Columbo
Peter Falk
Peter Michael Falk was an American actor, best known for his role as Lieutenant Columbo in the television series Columbo...

 on Columbo, Jim Rockford
James Garner
James Garner is an American film and television actor, one of the first Hollywood actors to excel in both media. He has starred in several television series spanning a career of more than five decades...

 on The Rockford Files, Steve McGarret
Jack Lord
John Joseph Patrick Ryan , best known by his stage name Jack Lord, was an American television, film, and Broadway actor. He was known for his starring role as Steve McGarrett in the American television program Hawaii Five-O from 1968 to 1980. Lord appeared in feature films earlier in his career,...

 on Hawaii Five-O, Uncle Jesse Duke
Denver Pyle
Denver Dell Pyle was an American film and television actor. He is best remembered for playing Uncle Jesse in The Dukes of Hazzard .-Early life:...

 on The Dukes of Hazzard, and Cheyenne Bodie
Clint Walker
Norman Eugene Walker, known as Clint Walker , is an American actor best known for his cowboy role as "Cheyenne Bodie" in the TV Western series, Cheyenne.-Life and career:...

 on Cheyenne.

Other uses

An ancient term, the word "sailor," has come to mean many things. Sailor may refer to:
  • A person who is under sail and not on a vessel with motorised power of any kind in the Royal Navy
    Royal Navy
    The Royal Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Founded in the 16th century, it is the oldest service branch and is known as the Senior Service...

    ,
  • A person who goes out sailing
    Sailing
    Sailing is the propulsion of a vehicle and the control of its movement with large foils called sails. By changing the rigging, rudder, and sometimes the keel or centre board, a sailor manages the force of the wind on the sails in order to move the boat relative to its surrounding medium and...

    , boating
    Boating
    Boating is the leisurely activity of travelling by boat, or the recreational use of a boat whether powerboats, sailboats, or man-powered vessels , focused on the travel itself, as well as sports activities, such as fishing or water skiing...

     or yachting
    Yachting
    Yachting refers to recreational sailing or boating, the specific act of sailing or using other water vessels for sporting purposes.-Competitive sailing:...

    ,
  • A person who practices the art of controlling the motion of a sailing ship or sailboat
    Sailboat
    A sailboat or sailing boat is a boat propelled partly or entirely by sails. The term covers a variety of boats, larger than small vessels such as sailboards and smaller than sailing ships, but distinctions in the size are not strictly defined and what constitutes a sailing ship, sailboat, or a...

    , across a body of water,
  • An enlisted member of a military naval force,
  • Anyone on a boat,
  • Anyone from a recruit to an admiral
    Admiral
    Admiral is the rank, or part of the name of the ranks, of the highest naval officers. It is usually considered a full admiral and above vice admiral and below admiral of the fleet . It is usually abbreviated to "Adm" or "ADM"...

     in a navy
    Navy
    A navy is the branch of a nation's armed forces principally designated for naval and amphibious warfare; namely, lake- or ocean-borne combat operations and related functions...

     or coast guard
    Coast guard
    A coast guard or coastguard is a national organization responsible for various services at sea. However the term implies widely different responsibilities in different countries, from being a heavily armed military force with customs and security duties to being a volunteer organization tasked with...

    ,
  • Members of the deck department
    Deck department
    The Deck Department is an organizational unit aboard naval and merchant ships. A Deck Officer is an officer serving in the deck department.-Merchant shipping:...

     as opposed to members of other departments in the Merchant Navy.

See also

  • British Merchant Navy
  • Marine (military)
  • Sailing
    Sailing
    Sailing is the propulsion of a vehicle and the control of its movement with large foils called sails. By changing the rigging, rudder, and sometimes the keel or centre board, a sailor manages the force of the wind on the sails in order to move the boat relative to its surrounding medium and...

  • Sailor jargon
    Glossary of nautical terms
    This is a glossary of nautical terms; some remain current, many date from the 17th-19th century. See also Wiktionary's nautical terms, :Category:Nautical terms, and Nautical metaphors in English.- A :...

  • Sailor suit
    Sailor suit
    A sailor suit is a uniform traditionally worn by enlisted seamen in the navy, and other government funded sea services. It later developed in to a popular clothing style for children....

  • Seafarer's professions and ranks
    Seafarer's professions and ranks
    Seafarers hold a variety of professions and ranks, and each of these roles carries unique responsibilities which are integral to the successful operation of a seafaring vessel...

  • Seaman military rank
    Seaman
    Seaman is one of the lowest ranks in a Navy. In the Commonwealth it is the lowest rank in the Navy, followed by Able Seaman and Leading Seaman, and followed by the Petty Officer ranks....

  • The Marine Society
    The Marine Society
    The Marine Society was the world's first seafarers’ charity. In 1756, at the beginning of the Seven Years' War against France, Austria, Russia, Sweden and Saxony Britain urgently needed to recruit men for the navy...

  • United States Merchant Marine
    United States Merchant Marine
    The United States Merchant Marine refers to the fleet of U.S. civilian-owned merchant vessels, operated by either the government or the private sector, that engage in commerce or transportation of goods and services in and out of the navigable waters of the United States. The Merchant Marine is...


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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