By Ron Field
The half performed within the Civil battle (1861-1865) through the small Marine Corps of the United and accomplice States is overshadowed by means of the confrontations of the good armies. however, the coastal and riverine campaigns have been of actual value, given the strategic importance of the Federal blockade of southern ports, and of the fight for the Mississippi River. Marines donning blue and gray fought in lots of dramatic activities afloat and ashore – ship-to-ship engagements, cutting-out expeditions, and coastal landings. This booklet deals a finished precis of all such battles, illustrated with infrequent early photos, and meticulously researched colour plates detailing the usually vague trivialities of Marine uniforms and gear.
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The practical distinction between piracy and privateering was many times something a cynic could ................. 11455$ $CH2 07-18-05 09:44:21 PS PAGE 19 20 i T h e S e a Ro ve r ’ s P r a c t i c e simply not discern. ’’40 Buccaneers and filibusters, for example, were technically sometimes pirate and sometimes privateer, shifting from one to the other with each change in European politics. Even during entirely legitimate and conventional privateering operations in European waters, many captains engaged in acts that were entirely unlawful as well as unpatriotic, if not deemed actual piracy.
32 Difficulties did arise. 36 The Charter Party Sea-roving vessels, privateers in particular, relied on several vital documents. The commission and accompanying instructions, ‘‘Orders of the Owners to the Captains,’’ ship’s muster, ship’s quarter bill, ship’s log, and accounts of plunder were essential to a successful cruise. However, with the exception of a privateer’s commission, none was as important to any sea rover as the ship’s articles of agreement. Also called a ‘‘charter party’’ (a maritime term for the contract or charter between the owners of a vessel and the merchants hiring the vessel), and in French a chasse partie (a contract for the hunt or chase) or charte partie, the articles defined the conditions under which the cruise would be conducted.
Yet he knew to not waste valor on unprofitable ventures. He and his brethren might be capable of extraordinary feats of arms in the face of overwhelming numbers, but there was no sense in exhibiting these martial virtues merely for their own sake. In sum, he was not wont to shed his own blood for the sake of futile purpose. To put his usually limited resources to best use, as well as to preserve both his own life and the plunder he desired, he invariably sought victory along the path of least resistance, taking other routes only in desperation.