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49TH CONGRESS, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. MIS. Doc.
THE UNITED STATES.
BUREAU OF NAVIGATION,
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE.
BUREAU OF NAVIGATION,
Washington, D. C., August 25, 1886.
[Resolution of Congress passed July 31, 1886.]
Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That there be printed 5,000 copies of the navigation and customs collection laws relating to vessels, including the laws relating to merchant seamen, and the regulation of steam vessels, compiled by the Bureau of Navigation in the Treasury Department, of which 1,000 copies shall be for the use of the Senate, 2,000 copies for the use of the House of Representatives, and 2,000 copies for the use of the Bureau of Navigation.
In compliance with the foregoing resolution I have prepared this volume, comprising the navigation laws of the United States, with such statutes as relate to the customs and to merchant seamen.
In order to make the book concise and render the different subjects more easy of reference, the matter is classified in twelve parts, as below. PART I.-(1) Vessels: their measurement and documents; (2) entry and clearance; (3) yachts and pleasure vessels; (4) tonnage duties; (5) Bureau of Navigation; (6) abolishment of certain fees.
PART II. (1) Regulation of vessels in foreign trade; (2) regulation of vessels in domestic trade; (3) regulation of vessels in the fisheries; (4) drawbacks on shipbuilding materials, &c.
PART III.—(1) Transportation of passengers and merchandise; (2) liability of shipowners; (3) transportation by steam-vessels; (4) inspection, &c.; (5) general pilot laws.
PART IV.—(1) Immigration and coolie trade; (2) guano islands; (3) timber shipments; (4) carrying the mail.
PART V.-(1) Navigation rules and vessels' lights; (2) collisions-revised international regulations; (3) wrecks and life-saving stations; (4) storm and weather signals; (5) fixing a common meridian.
PART VI.-(1) Lights and buoys; (2) Coast Survey; (3) navigable rivers; (4) rivers and harbors.
PART VII.—(1) Public health; (2) quarantine; (3) hospitals, &c.
PART VIII.—(1) Merchant seamen and their shipment and discharge; (2) log
PART IX.-Miscellaneous acts, amendments, and corrections of the foregoing laws. PART X.-(1) Foreign relations; (2) consular service; (3) extradition; (4) neutrality.
PART XI.-(1) Insurrections and unlawful trade; (2) crimes; (3) remission of penalties; (4) piracy and trials; (5) slave trade; (6) prize.
PART XII.- (1) Customs laws; (2) collection of duties; (3) coins, weights, and
The navigation laws proper are embraced in the first nine parts. The laws relating to customs and other subjects intimately connected with shipping are included so far as practicable in Parts X, XI, and XII.
An explanatory table precedes the laws and a fully classified index is appended, in which all the laws adopted since the issue of the last edition of the Revised Statutes down to 1886 (first session of the Fortyninth Congress) may be found by reference to the leading topic alphabetically arranged.
JARVIS PATTEN, Commissioner of Navigation.
Many of the laws relating to matters of navigation having been recently repealed or amended, it is difficult in some instances to ascertain what is actually in force without reference to both the old laws and the amendatory acts. In such cases both the old statutes and the subsequent acts changing them have been introduced under the same head so far as practicable.
As the different sections from the Revised Statutes are not in numerical order in the book, the following table is given to show where the statutes and laws that have been changed may be found, and also the page where the repealing or amending act is printed.
THE NAVIGATION LAWS OF THE UNITED STATES.
1. VESSELS: THEIR MEASUREMENT AND DOCUMENTS.
2. ENTRY AND CLEARANCE.
3. YACHTS AND PLEASURE VESSELS.
4. TONNAGE DUTIES.
5. BUREAU OF NAVIGATION.
6. ABOLISHMENT OF CERTAIN FEES.
(Revised Statutes, Title I, chap. 1.)
DEFINITION OF A VESSEL.
SEC. 3. The word "vessel" includes every description of water-craft or other artificial contrivance used or capable of being used as a means of transportation on water."
1. VESSELS: THEIR MEASUREMENT AND DOCUMENTS. (Revised Statutes, Title XLVIII, chap. 1.-Regulation of Commerce and Navigation.)
SEC. 4131.* Vessels registered pursuant to law, and no others, except such as shall be duly qualified, according to law, for carrying on the coasting trade and fisheries, or one of them, shall be deemed vessels of the United States, and entitled to the benefits and privileges appertaining to such vessels; but they shall not enjoy the same longer than
*According to a Treasury circular of May 19, 1865, it even includes rafts.
Justice Merrick (1885) decided that a dredge was a vessel and the subject of admiralty.
Vessels entitled to be documented as vessels of the United States are of five classes, as follows:
1. Such as are built in the country and have, after being documented, been wholly owned by citizens of the United States.
2. Such as are built in the country under foreign ownership in whole or in part, not registered, enrolled, or licensed, but recorded, according to law upon becoming the exclusive property of citizens of the United States.
3. Such as have been captured in war by citizens of the United States, lawfully condemned as a prize and wholly owned by such citizens.
4. Such as have been forfeited for a violation of the laws of the United States and wholly owned by its citizens.
5. Vessels built out of the United States but wrecked within the waters thereof and purchased and repaired by citizens of the United States at an expense of threefourths of the cost of the vessel when repaired.