Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Holy Stone on the Vestal

On the trip to Pearl in 1941, my dad, Frank Dolan, was on the deck force in the forward section of the Vestal. There he said he learned how to “holy stone” the wooden deck of the ship (a method by which a brick, attached to a broom handle, is used to scrub the deck). He also learned to climb up the forward mast to the crow’s nest as a lookout. From there, he said, he could “holler down a funnel connected to the tube to someone at the other end [who] could hear the message.”

About his first few weeks on his ship, Dad said, “[Vestal] was an old ship.  Most of the men didn’t have regular bunks or hammocks in which to sleep, just cots with mattresses. These had to be stowed somewhere out of the way during the day. I usually slept on the deck someplace out of the weather. The petty officers, those with a stripe and an eagle, slept in the ship on cots.”

Source: Frank L. Dolan's personal account

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