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PigBoats.COM is also about the men that sailed these early submarines. Below are stories about what has been found out about some of these men. Some have large amounts of information available, others not so much. We try and present as much as can be found about these men and give a sense of who they were.

Click on the name below the photos to read their stories. Clicking on the photo will just enlarge it.

The Men

The Stories

Rope Yarn Sunday

On early sailing ships, a tailor would board the ship while in port to measure men for new clothing and make repairs for those who could afford it. The crew got to knock off work early to mend old clothes. For thread they would break out the rope yarns that were used for making ropes while underway and use it for thread to mend clothes and hammocks. One afternoon per week at sea, usually a Wednesday, was reserved for mending. Little understood in today's world, the men also knitted their own socks and sweaters. Knitting was not looked down on as effeminate or weak, indeed it was seen as eminently practical.

Since it was an afternoon for rest from the usual personal chores, many kept with the tradition up to the years immediately after World War II. The men used Wednesday afternoon for personal errands like picking up their laundry and getting haircuts. They paid back the time by working half a day on Saturdays.

Today's uniforms require less attention and the men usually send the clothing out for repair or purchase new to replace worn items, so Rope Yarn Sunday has been turned to other purposes - mainly taking an early liberty or a time for catching up on sleep. Some, however, still adhere to tradition by breaking out the ditty bag for an afternoon of uniform repair. While doing so sailors can't resist telling a few "sea stories", some true and maybe some "not so true", but who knows.

So, in keeping with the modern tradition of kicking back for a little fun and storytelling, here are our Rope Yarn Sunday offerings for your reading pleasure and entertainment.

The stories printed below are copyrighted and reproduced by permission of their authors.

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Ric Hedman & David Johnston
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