“Probably the proudest day of my 22 years …
… came when I, Pardon Mawney Whipple of Providence, Rhode Island, was appointed midshipman and assigned to Constitution. My father, an officer in the American Revolution, instilled in me a love for our young country and a belief that there is no greater honor than to fight for it.”
So you want to be a midshipman?
Do you want more money, better food, and greater respect? USS Constitution’s crew included midshipmen, young officers in training, who learned seamanship, naval tactics, and navigation to prepare them to be a lieutenant or even captain someday.
Find out if you qualify.
Even if you have all the qualifications necessary, your chances of becoming a midshipman are only one in ten.
“I have not one cent in my pocket …
… and my father has spent all of his money to buy the things I need to be a midshipman. I must pack.”
Dictionary, Rules and Regulations for the Navy, 2 Journals, 1 Quire (25 sheets) Paper, 1 Slate, 1 Nautical Almanac, Hat, Sword, 8 pair trousers (pants), 12 shirts, 1 uniform coat, Sextant or Octant, Book of Common Prayer, Telescope
Meet a Midshipman
Drawn from the ranks of the middle class, midshipmen went to sea to learn seamanship and leadership. They had no official duties, but were expected to do whatever was ordered of them.