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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Sailing Tailors: 1896

Sailing Tailors: 1896

Aboard the U.S.S. New York circa 1896. "Ship's tailor." The dog is Nick. 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Dog's name

This is my second attempt to correct the ID of the dog mascot. Last time I posted another photo of this mascot with his master and the dog's name was clearly written on the photo as "Mike."

["Nick" is on the collar of the dog in our photo. -tterrace]

Unit Mascots

Some squadrons still have mascots. I've heard of Army units having a dog. My Squadron is the "Strikin' Snakes." We have a ball python named "Trouser."


Anyone have an idea why an artillery piece mounted on an apparently land based gun carriage is sitting on a ship's deck? Looks a little big for a salute or signaling gun.

You can sit where they sat

If you are a certified diver and find yourself in Subic Bay. This incarnation of the USS New York (this is the 4th), is sitting in about 70 feet of water. Its a popular dive training location.

Really Unfair

I find it amusing that we know the name of the dog, and some of the commenters find it unfair that we don't know the cat's name, but nobody's mentioned that we don't know the names of the sailors.


I wonder if the two men closest to the dog are related. They look like brothers, perhaps even twins.

Here, Puss!

Call a cat whatever you like but it still thinks it's called Puss.

Pets or pest control?

Don't forget that rats and other pests were problems on ships. These animals were probably pets, but their main function was doubtless pest control.

Like most kitties

this one is obviously NOT pleased at being forced to pose for the camera. Probably why the lack of kats captured for posterity on Shorpy.

[Click the "cats" tag above the photo. - Dave]

Spoiled animals

Those are probably some of the best cared for animals in the history of pets! Look how fat the dog is. It's too bad that animals like that are not allowed today, for they would be great for morale.

I'm just going out for a moment

At least they didn't have to take the cat for walkies.


The ship's tailor is a Boatswain's Mate 3rd class (BM3/E4 in today's Navy) and the sailor leaning against the cannon is a Gunners Mate 2nd class (GMG2/E5 today). The other two with jumpers on are seamen (SN/E3 today). Don't know about the sailor on the right as he's obviously out of uniform. I do find it odd the sailor with the bosun's pipe in his pocket in only a seaman but has over four years in judging by the longevity stripe on his left sleeve. Maybe achieving rank was a bit harder back in those days.

No More Pets

Unfortunately, modern military men are not permitted to keep pets in barracks or aboard ship. Unit mascots are slso a thing of the past. I understand the practicalities, but it's a shame. Some atmosphere has been lost.

His Master's Voice

I think Nick is not a real dog but a prototype of future Nippers.

Man the sewing machines!

Full speed ahead!

At last!

A cat is welcomed to a Shorpy picture, instead of having to sneak in.

Mend thy self

The tailor's shirt might need a little work.

And the cat

is toast.

Cat discrimination

The dog may be Nick, but who is the cat? They should have put that on the photo as well!

[We know the dog's name because "Nick" is engraved on his collar. - Dave]

Bedroom Eyes

The two guys on the left look could charm the birds from the trees.


The dog's name will be known forever (more or less) but the cat shall be ever nameless.

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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