Old time sailing vid - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 12 Old 12-01-2007 Thread Starter
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post #2 of 12 Old 12-01-2007
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Thanks, Charlie. Some rare footage indeed.

“Scientists are people who build the Brooklyn Bridge and then buy it.”
Wm. F. Buckley, Jr.
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post #3 of 12 Old 12-01-2007
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Charlie THANK YOU VERY VERY MUCH


Already watched it twice, and will watch again 2 times before going to bed.

I have been on that boat in Mystic Seaport, in Connecticut.

THANKS again

Alex
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post #4 of 12 Old 12-01-2007
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thanks, that was mesmerizing.


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post #5 of 12 Old 12-01-2007
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Wonderful, Charlie! Thanks.

Bill
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post #6 of 12 Old 12-01-2007 Thread Starter
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Glad ya liked it. Here's another that doesn't have the excitement but shows how they tack/gybe a square rigger.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9sOMO...eature=related
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post #7 of 12 Old 12-01-2007
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I know that medical/dental was torture back then but stil... would have been a great job.
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post #8 of 12 Old 12-01-2007
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The cat in the video is cool too. Looks like an integral part of the ship... Which from her point of view must appear as one giant scratching post!
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post #9 of 12 Old 12-01-2007
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I have an old friend who always amazes me. He looks at things dispassionately, and lists the "hidden subsidies" that fund what meets the eye, instead of the notions of how wonderful thing are within themselves.

I like the vids references in this link, but the narration is a bit too much of a tease. "In these days, men lived a man's life, and there were casualties and losses but isn't it better that men live a man's life and if it ends suddenly then that is what it was."

In the actual equation, the ships were carrying a cargo to pass a hefty profit to the shipping companies and owners, and not so much to the men in the rigging. In fact, if they died (as shown in the film), they were put over the side and the rest of the crew carried on. At the end of the voyage, the wives were given something from the companies but they didn't have much say.

So, basically, it was a "hidden subsidy" in the old days that lives could be lost without much cost to the companies. It's cool to think about men living men's lives, but mostly we're talking about young men in the old days (as noted in the vid, a first-timer was lost) as being maybe disposable. I'm not sure if today's standards would allow that, and the cost of lost lives might make a truly traditional ship too expensive to operate (liability, risk exposure, etc.). Maybe that wrecks the romance of it, but on the other hand, maybe it should.

So, the vid talks about the old ways being lost when it seems like wind-powered alternatives to power are coming back to the fore. Today's designs may look quite different from the ships in the vid; however, that might be not because knowledge was lost, but because life is valued more highly.

Great videos-- thanks for the link.
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post #10 of 12 Old 12-01-2007
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Jim H,
There may be some truth to young men running off to sea for the adventure and romance. Damn few would have stayed at sea for those reasons. Those emotions exist almost soley in the minds of recreational sailors. Going to sea has often been a hard life, but it has also generally been a good paying life and that has kept many a man at sea.

Talk of "hidden subsidies" to shipping companies is misplaced. The Jones Act alone guaruntees merchant seamen care that shoreside employers do not provide even today. Merchant ships have never been over-manned and the loss of a single seaman was a serious matter. That 24 men would handle such a ship was news to me-we regularly had crews of 45 on ships in the 1970's and only through automation have gotten down to 19-21 men. Sounds more like bare-bones manning to me, requiring every man be skilled, safe, and compensated.

I suspect the narration was designed to make the point of the more communal with nature life lived than found on steam-ships, and the daily challenges inherent therein.

Of course, the argument can be made, on your behalf, that there was a reason that seamen were some of the first to unionize and were some of the most strident and militant about it begging the question of how wonderful they perceived their lives to be. I'm afraid though that you'll have to look to the government navies of the world for real exploitation of seamen.

“Scientists are people who build the Brooklyn Bridge and then buy it.”
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