A fun portrait I did during a visit to Mystic Seaport this past spring. Here he was, a good ol’ salt of the earth kinda guy tending to a dogwatch. I felt like an intruder (but who wouldn’t take advantage of the moment?) while he sat and sang of a time gone past, shanty tales of the muse at sea. – a genuine treasured moment, Michele
f.y.i. A Dog watch is – in marine or naval terminology, a watch, a period of work duty or a work shift, between 1600 and 2000 (4pm and 8pm). This period is split into two, with the first dog watch from 1600 to 1800 (4pm to 6pm) and the second dog watch from 1800 to 2000 (6pm to 8pm). Each of these watches are half the length of a standard watch.
The name is said to derive from Sirius the “Dog Star”, on the claim that Sirius was the first star to come into view on the first dog watch. The reason behind this watch’s existence is that in order for the crew to rotate through all the watches it was necessary to split one of the watches in half, to create an odd number of watches in a ship’s day. This allowed the sailors to stand different watches instead of one team being forced to stand the mid-watch every night. The choice of time also allows both watches, if there are only two, to eat an evening meal at about the traditional time.