Thursday, December 24, 2009

Other: TO ALL SAILORS WHEREVER YE MAY BE

My mother found an ancient suitcase of papers which had belonged to my father's mother. Most are various records dating from the 1930s-50s, but there are some gems, including a small (about 2"x4") book containing the four gospels. The very faded handwritten inscription in the front is dated 1889. There was also this large and fabulous certificate rolled up in there, printed on heavy paper and about 14"x18" in size:

Imperium Neptuni Regis

It reads as follows:

TO ALL SAILORS WHEREVER YE MAY BE: and to all Mermaids, Sea Serpents, Porpoises, Sharks, Dolphins, Eels, Skates, Suckers, Crabs, Lobsters and all other Living Things of the Sea

GREETING: Know ye: That on this 23rd day of November, 1936 in Latitude 0000 and Longitude 106 // 30 E there appeared within Our Royal Domain the U.S.S. Black Hawk bound South for the Equator and for Manila, Philippine Islands

BE IT REMEMBERED

That the said Vessel and Officers and Crew thereof have been inspected and passed on by Ourself and Our Royal Staff
AND BE IT KNOWN: By all ye Sailors, Marines, Land Lubbers and others who may be honored by his presence that

Elmer W. Melvin

having been found to be numbered as one of our Trusty Shellbacks he has been duly initiated into the
SOLEMN MYSTERIES OF THE ANCIENT ORDER OF THE DEEP

Be It Further Understood That by virtue of the power invested in me I do hereby command all my subjects to show the honor and respect to him wherever he may be

Disobey this order under penalty of Our Royal Displeasure

Given under our hand and seal this 24 November, 1936

Davey Jones
His Majesty's Scribe

Neptunus Rex
Ruler of the Raging Main

By his Servant J K Esler, Commander


It has the seal of the U.S. Navy. I believe Elmer Melvin was my father's mother's mother's brother. What a find.

1 comment:

Pond Cat said...

Great post.

My father received one as well.

http://pondcat.blogspot.com/2012/06/uss-aldebaran-af-10-july-11-1953.html

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