The Queens Regulations and the Admiralty Instructions - 1861
INSTRUCTIONS FOR BOATSWAINS.
The Boatswain is to be frequently upon deck in the day, and at all times both by day and night when any duty shall require all hands being employed. He is, with his Mates, to see that the men go quickly upon deck when called, and that, when there, they perform their duty with alacrity.
He is, every day, before 8 A.M., and as much oftener as may be desirable, according to the service the Ship is employed on, to examine the state of the rigging, to ascertain whether any part may be chafed, or likely to give way, and to report to the Officer of the watch the state in which he finds it, in order that steps may be immediately taken to repair or replace whatever may require being so dealt with. He is at all times to be careful that the anchors, booms, and boats be properly secured: and he is to be very attentive to have ready at all times a sufficient number of mats, plats, knippers, points, and gaskets, that no delay or inconvenience may be experienced when they are wanted. He is, so far as the same may depend upon him, to keep the boats ready for immediate service and the boats' gear constantly rove.
He is to be very attentive in observing, in the working up of junk, that every part of it is converted to all such purposes as may be ordered.
When the Ship is preparing for battle, he is to be very particular in seeing that everything necessary for repairing the rigging is in its proper place, that the men stationed to that service may know where to find immediately whatever may be wanted.
He is to be attentive to the conduct of the Rope-maker, to see that he is diligent, that the rope he makes is well made, and that the quantity corresponds with the quantity of yarns issued for this purpose; and he is to take upon charge the rope that is so made.
He is, with the Sail-maker, very carefully to examine the sails when they are received on board, and is to inform the master if he discover any defects in them or any mistake in their number or dimensions. He is also to examine very carefully whether they be perfectly dry, when they are put into the sail room, that if any part of them be damp, the first proper opportunity may be taken to dry them.
He is to cause the Sail-maker to keep all the sails correctly tallied and so disposed of in the sail-rooms as to enable him to find immediately any that may be wanted.
He is to cause the Sail-maker to inspect frequently the condition of the sails in the sail-rooms, to see that they are not injured by leaks or vermin; and he is to report to the Master, whenever it shall be necessary to have them taken upon deck to be dried.
When the Ship is ordered to be paid off, he is to be very attentive to prevent any of the rigging being damaged or cut. He is to see every part of it properly tallied and stopped together for returning into store
If the Ship be furnished with wire rigging, he is, while fitting out, to attend in the Dock-yard to make himself acquainted with the process of splicing such rigging.