SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
The Shorpy Archive
9000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
Join and Share

Support Shorpy

Shorpy is funded by you. Help by purchasing a print or contributing. Learn more.

Social Shorpy


Join our mailing list (enter email):

Member Photos

Photos submitted by Shorpy members.

Colorized Photos

Colorized photos submitted by members.

About the Photos

Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2019 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

JUMP TO PAGE   100  >  200  >  300  >  400  >  500  >  600

Spar Deck Swabbies: 1898

Spar Deck Swabbies: 1898

Circa 1898. "League Island Navy Yard, Philadelphia. U.S.S. Brooklyn spar deck." 8x10 inch glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5
To stay online without a paywall or a lot of pop-up ads, Shorpy needs your help. (Our server rental alone is $3,000 a year.) You can contribute by becoming a Patron, or by purchasing a print from the Shorpy Archive. Or both! Read more about our 2019 pledge drive here. Our last word on the subject is: Thanks!

What are those "pads" called?

Very interesting comment from Capn_Jack, thanks! I also noted four (4ea) boat support pads mounted above the spars with turnbuckles for adjustability. I wonder if they have a name.

Devil's in the details

Lots of neat details in this one. The intake ventilators TonyB asked about,-- usually these big ones are for the boiler room combustion supply as well as to cool the stokers as they fed coal into the furnaces -- are adjustable. There is a drive pinion shaft running up each one with a ring of gear teeth around the exterior (see the one top center). This would allow the crew to trim the ventilators to the wind direction so they could scoop as much air as possible. On some ships in this period boilers worked by natural draft -- the ventilators were not being helped by mechanical fans -- and this arrangement was much more common on cruisers that could handle the very tall funnels natural draft required. It seems likely Brooklyn was using wind to help her boilers get more air. More air, faster combustion, more power.

The second detail is the spars resting on the beams overhead. These spars might have been for the ship's boats. In this period, ships' boats were often sail and/or oar powered, with one or two steam launches. Cruisers had a large complement of boats since they often did service in remote areas. The "string of beads" thing at the end of a spar is a parrel -- a feature from the age of sail that slid (rolled on the beads actually) up and down on a mast to allow a gaff or yard to be hoisted smoothly. The shape of the jaws suggests a gaff, and the size of the wire loop suggests it's for one of the boats rather than for the ship itself.

Vampire Ship

The Photographer caught Nosferatu coming up the stairs.

The large intake tubes

Landlubber here so might be a dumb query. What are those huge tubes used for on these old ships? I assume air intake for down below?

[Yes. Ventilator ports. - Dave]

SHORPY OLD 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.

Syndicate content RSS | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Photo Use | © 2019 Shorpy Inc.