Master at arms


Joe L

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Jun 9, 2020
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Later during prohibition there were gambling ships that would go off shore just outside the legal jurisdiction to let people drink and gamble. Both on the east and west coast. I know there was ship off Los Angeles that would just ferry out passengers to her for the day/night.
This is still a very popular "touristy(?)" thing to do in Florida. There are gambling ships going out of a lot of ports, at least on the east coast. My guess would be that Florida's west coast would have their fair share as well.
 
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May 3, 2005
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We see some sort of brig in the 1996 Miniseries, and it is clearly mentioned as a goof.

This leaves me wondering: what WERE the duties of the Master-at-Arms on a passenger ship like the Titanic?
Just a question:
If brig is a "naval term and would not be used on a civilian ship"
How about "Master At Arms" ????
In the Navy the Master At Arms is usually a BM (Bo's'n's Mate) specialty rating.
Trivia item : In the USN the enlisted man is a BM and the Warrant Officer is a Bo's'n.
 
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Nov 14, 2005
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Just a question:
If brig is a "naval term and would not be used on a civilian ship"
How about "Master At Arms" ????
In the Navy the Master At Arms is usually a BM (Bo's'n's Mate) specialty rating.
Trivia item : In the USN the enlisted man is a BM and the Warrant Officer is a Bo's'n.
I don't know how the merchant marines/civilian liner companies classify it. One would think they call them brigs too. When I did my stint they navy couldn't make up its mind about the MAA's but now its a designated rating and their trained as cops like the MP's in the army. But if they need more I'm sure they can still assign people on a temp basis with limited duties. From what I've seen and read the navy has changed so much since when we were in. I wouldn't last a week in today's navy. I used to have to take guys in the brig to the mess to get their bread and water. I don't even know if they still sentence guys to bread and water only. When I was in at least on my ship they had to take the marines out of brig duty. Too many problems.
 
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Nov 14, 2005
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This is still a very popular "touristy(?)" thing to do in Florida. There are gambling ships going out of a lot of ports, at least on the east coast. My guess would be that Florida's west coast would have their fair share as well.
Interesting. I didn't know that was still a thing. Used to be if you lived in Phoenix or Los Angeles you had to go to Vegas. Now just about every indian reservation has a casino. Phoenix has like 4 or 5 now last I heard.
 
May 3, 2005
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I don't know how the merchant marines/civilian liner companies classify it. One would think they call them brigs too. When I did my stint they navy couldn't make up its mind about the MAA's but now its a designated rating and their trained as cops like the MP's in the army. But if they need more I'm sure they can still assign people on a temp basis with limited duties. From what I've seen and read the navy has changed so much since when we were in. I wouldn't last a week in today's navy. I used to have to take guys in the brig to the mess to get their bread and water. I don't even know if they still sentence guys to bread and water only. When I was in at least on my ship they had to take the marines out of brig duty. Too many problems.
You mentioned how much the navy has changed since we were in. I remember an incident when our ship was in the Long Beach Naval Shipyard. This was "way back when" not too long after the close of the Korean Conflict. We would take what was then the Pacific Electric interurban "Red Cars"from Long Beach to Los Angeles . An elderly gentlemen came on the train at one point along the line and showed up showed us some pictures of himself in dress whites complete with a bosun's pipe on a lanyard. He said he had served under Admiral Dewey at Manila Bay during the Spanish-American War. I wonder if the present generation would think our generation were as ancient as we thought that this gentleman was ? Just another twist on the story . After he got off later along the line everyone had sort of a double take and remarked how much he looked like Charles Coburn, a popular movie actor of those times.

I don't if anyone on the ships on which I served ever had anyone sentenced to the brig. The ship.had a brig .
On a hunt for some spare parts for the radar, we passed the brig. Looked like a nice, quiet, cozy place to spend some time away from the hustle and bustle.

And I was on Shore Patrol only one time and it was rather dull and uneventful duty. One very young SA asked me a question and called me"Sir".

Maybe we should really get off the Ancient Mariner tales and really get back on the Titanic !
 
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May 3, 2005
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I don't know how the merchant marines/civilian liner companies classify it. One would think they call them brigs too. When I did my stint they navy couldn't make up its mind about the MAA's but now its a designated rating and their trained as cops like the MP's in the army. But if they need more I'm sure they can still assign people on a temp basis with limited duties. From what I've seen and read the navy has changed so much since when we were in. I wouldn't last a week in today's navy. I used to have to take guys in the brig to the mess to get their bread and water. I don't even know if they still sentence guys to bread and water only. When I was in at least on my ship they had to take the marines out of brig duty. Too many problems.
Did they lash them to the mainmast and flog them with a cat 'o nine tails ?
 
May 3, 2005
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Interesting. I didn't know that was still a thing. Used to be if you lived in Phoenix or Los Angeles you had to go to Vegas. Now just about every indian reservation has a casino. Phoenix has like 4 or 5 now last I heard.
There are now casinos up and down I-40 (Which used to be old "Route 66") across New Mexico and Arizona.
 
Nov 14, 2005
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Did they lash them to the mainmast and flog them with a cat 'o nine tails ?
Usually it was that some swabbie would mouth off to them and they would rough him up. Sometimes they would go to far. Then later there would payback. It was getting to be a mess. So they changed how they did things. They also took the marines out of the positive motivation company for reasons that were even worse. But getting back to the question about Titanic's MAA. That was their title. I've read the Olympic class ships had 2 MAA's.
 

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