Introduction Acknowledgments Abstract Log Articles of Agreement Bill of Health Bill of Lading Bill of Sale (1856) Bond for Duties (1825) Bonds for Foreign Voyages Charter Party Classification Certificate (1863) Clearance Certificate Coasting Permit (1809) Consular Certificates (Miscellaneous) Contribution Certificate "Morning Star" (1856) Convoy Instructions (ca. 1800) Crew List Customs Certificates and Forms (Miscellaneous) Drawback Forms and Certificates Enrolment Certificate Freight Circular (1857) Freight List (1857) Letter of Marque/Privateer Commission License (Coasting/Fishing Vessels) Logbook (1828) Manifest Marine Insurance Marine Society Membership Certificate (1839) Master Carpenter's Certificate/Measurement Certificate (1853) Master's Certificate (1861) Mediterranean Passport/Sea Letter Oaths and Affirmations Passenger List Pilot's License Port Rules and Regulations Portage Bill (1852) Receipts (Miscellaneous) Registry Certificate/Ship's Register Sailing Card (ca. 1860) Sailing Orders (1830) Seamen's Protection Certificate Shipbuilding Agreements and Contracts Steamboat Regulatory Documents Whalemen's Shipping Paper (1840) Appendix Selected Bibliography

American Maritime Documents, 1776-1860 - Stein, Douglas L.

Steamboat Regulatory Documents

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Steamboat Pilot's Certificate: A one-page printed document, prior to 1860 a common size was 6 ½" x 10 ½". "Steamboat Pilots' Certificate" is often printed boldly across the top. Most documents have printed or engraved borders, and some exhibit a detailed engraving of a three-masted side-wheel steamship, centered in the upper portion of the certificate. Similar in form to the Engineer's Certificate, the Steamboat Pilots' Certificate also carries the name and rating of the pilot, along with an oath, swearing that he will comply with the Congressional Act of 1852 regarding the supervision of steamboats and their machinery. Issued through local customs districts, the license usually contained the signatures of the inspectors and the collector.
The Steamboat Pilot's Certificate became a requirement after the amendment to existing steamboat legislation was passed in 1852. Steam pilots were thus federally regulated, while those aboard sailing vessels could remain, for a while at least, under the supervision of individual states. The pilot candidate was examined by the inspectors for his knowledge and qualifications regarding the specific waterway he intended to work. License was valid for one year.

* Funding for digitization provided by: The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation