Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Merchant Seaman and the Government: A Superb Early Nautical Broadside/Contract. Two pages, 17" x 20", New Bedford, Massachusetts, May 1818. Large and highly impressive document, representing an agreement between Moses Goodrich, Master of the Sloop Catherine of New Bedford and the ship's crew "now bound for the Port of St. Thomas and a Market in the West Indies." Signed by the Master and crew on the bottom of the document, where the monthly wages are listed. Each crew member is identified by name, station (mariner, cook, seaman, mate), amount of money advanced before sailing, "hospital money" (67 cents) and amounts due. The entries are further noted and witnessed on the blank lower margin, all dated between April 10, 1818 and May 5, 1818. The front of the document bears an attractive and striking reprint of the "Act for the Government and Regulation of Seamen in the Merchants' Service", a spread-eagle device in the top center. The Act requires that "every master or commander of any ship or vessel bound from a port in the United States, to any foreign port...shall, before he proceed on such voyage, make an agreement in writing or in print, with every seaman or mariner on board such ship or vessel." Signed in print by John Adams, George Washington, Aaron Burr, and Thomas Jefferson. A very scarce and desirable nautical document. Ideal for display. Very good condition overall.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2006
    12th-13th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 452

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

    Sold on Oct 13, 2006 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2021 October 3 Autumn Luxury Accessories Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    Thanks a million for getting approval to sell my Civil War Hospital Death Ledger! You made them AND ME , a nice profit. You are the best!
    Ed W.,
    Mount Vernon, OH
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search