One of the main reasons why Congress established the Navy in 1798
was to protect American commerce and the sailors involved in it.
This led to the Navy fighting an undeclared war with France, and
another against the piratical actions of the Barbary States of
North Africa. Also one of the reasons for the declaration of war
against Great Britain in 1812 was the impressment of American
seamen into the British Navy. In the decades before the American
Civil War various political, social and religious groups were
agitating for reforms in American society that would be in keeping
with its professed democratic and national principles. One such
organisation was the American Seaman's Friend Society which
agitated and lobbied for an improvements in the enlistment,
discipline and treatment of sailors in the merchant marine and the
Navy both afloat and ashore. The Society on its own established a
bank where sailors could deposit their wages as well as safe
boarding houses for seamen of both types in major ports. Its
members petitioned Congress to change various regulations and
practices in regard to naval seamen. The causes of the Society were
embraced by some naval officers, members of Congress and a few
Secretaries of the Navy. Secretaries of the Navy were conscious of
the need for changes to attract and hold native born Americans to
the U.S.Navy. My book explores the circumstances and people in and
out of the Navy who eventually convinced Congress to enact reforms
to improve the conditions of service of naval enlisted men and to
lay the foundation for a career enlisted force.
Naval Institute Press
|Country of origin:
Harold D. Langley
||229 x 152 x 23mm (L x W x T)
Social sciences >
Warfare & defence >
Naval forces & warfare
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