A comprehensive manual of most aspects of seamanship at the height of sail, and near the beginning of steam. There are a few rudimentary references to books and reading, rather surprisingly few for a man of Dana’s literary tastes.
p. 143: As to his duties as a watch-officer, it will be necessary to repeat the explanations partly given in the chapter upon the master’s duties. The crew are divided equally into two watches, the larboard and starboard; the larboard commanded by the chief mate, and the starboard by the second mate. These watches divide the day between them, being on and off duty every other four hours. This is the theory of the time, but in fact, in nearly all merchant vessels, all hands are kept on deck and at work throughout the afternoon, from one o’clock until sundown; and sometimes, if there is a great deal to be done, as immediately before making port, or after an accident, all hands may be kept throughout the day. This is, however, justly considered hard usage, if long continued, since it gives the men but little time for sleep, and none for , or taking care of their clothes. Although all hands may be on deck and at work during a day or a half day, yet the division of time is still kept up.
p. 174: As to the time allowed for SLEEP; it may be said, generally, that a sailor’s watch below is at his own disposal to do what he chooses in, except, of course, when all hands are called. The meal times, and time for washing, mending, , writing, &c., must all come out of the watch below… .