Nelson & His World

Discussion on the life and times of Admiral Lord Nelson
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 Post subject: Getting logbooks to the Admiralty
PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 9:01 am 
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Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2008 6:30 pm
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Location: England
Leafing through a lieutenant's logbook recently, I noticed that soon after docking at Deptford the log had been delivered to the Admiralty.

I'm wondering who would have been responsible for such a delivery. Would the captain of the ship be the officer who carried all logs/relevant paperwork to the Admiralty? Or could they arrive on an ad-hoc basis in the hands of other officers (eg the lieutenant here) who wrote or were responsible for them on board?

Were there a set of procedures to be followed (regarding the records) when a ship returned home from a commission?

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 Post subject: Re: Getting logbooks to the Admiralty
PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 7:04 am 
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Yes, there was a vast amount of paperwork that the captain had to submit, mostly to the Navy Board, rather than the Admiralty, but logbooks/journals went to the Admiralty. A captain would not receive his own pay until his accounts had been passed, and I think his prize agent was often responsible for checking his books were passed and handling his pay. On board, his clerk would have completed much of the paperwork. But I don't believe the captain was required to deliver the books personally, and I guess that perhaps he might use his clerk or his prize agent to deliver the books. Also, the captain had no responsibility to submit his lieutenants' logbooks, which were the responsibility of the lieutenants themselves.

See for example "The Seaman's New Vade Mecum; containing a Practical Essay on Naval Book-Keeping, with the Method of keeping the Captain's Books, ...", 2nd edition published 1827, but I don't think much had changed. The book is much more interesting than the title suggests, also containing lots of information on the duties of various officers.

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Tony


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 Post subject: Re: Getting logbooks to the Admiralty
PostPosted: Sat Oct 19, 2013 4:37 pm 
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Perfect answer to a very imperfect question, Tony. You never fail to deliver! Many, many thanks.

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