The Kedge Anchor; or Young Sailors’ Assistant By William Brady
Immediately upon its publication in the mid-nineteenth century, this book became the Bible of U.S. sailors, who used it daily and followed its advice assiduously. The Kedge-Anchor’s no-nonsense prose provided specific instruction for every aspect of sailing the great ships of the age — from knotting and rigging to blacking the guns, from stationing the crew to dealing with the direst emergencies.
The young sailor learns about stowing provisions, driving before the wind. Securing the ship for sea, and setting and shifting course. He also learns what to do in the extremities of life at sea: how to unbend a topsail in a gate and how to prepare for a hurricane; what to do if the tiller breaks, the mainmast is carried away, or the ship leaks faster than the pumps can free her. Detailed instructions explain procedures for dealing with fires, squalls, and waterspouts, what to do when the main rigging is shot away by an enemy or when a man has fallen overboard, and how to abandon ship and take to the boats when necessary.
Enhanced with 70 rare engravings, a glossary of sea terms, and 10 pages of useful tables, this hard-to-find volume is a genuine maritime classic and an unparalleled glimpse into the realities of shipboard life in the days of sail.
The Kedge Anchor; or Young Sailors’ Assistant by William Brady is a decent guide for the models ship builder, but is really just a wonderful resource for early 19th century nautical US history. A great addition to any sea loving persons bookshelf!
This is the Dover Publications 448 page paperback reprint of the fourth New York edition.