Escambia County, Florida

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List of Mechanics, Laborers, &c
Employed in the Navy Yard Pensacola
May 1829

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Introduction: President John Quincy Adams determined that a naval base in Florida was crucial; to American plans to secure Florida, suppress piracy and slavery in the Gulf and Caribbean and as the garrison of the West Indies Squadron. Consequently Pensacola Navy Yard was established in April 1826 because of its excellent harbor and the large timber reserves nearby for shipbuilding. The Pensacola Navy Yard, the seventh federal shipyard, was built on the southern tip of Escambia County, where the air station is today. Navy Captains William Bainbridge, Lewis Warrington, and James Biddle selected the site on Pensacola Bay. The “List of Mechanics, Laborers &C employed in the Navy Yard Pensacola” was compiled by at the direction of the Navy Board of Commissioners and submitted in May 1829. The 1829 list reflects the names and occupations and wage rates of eighty seven employees, thirty seven of whom were enslaved. The Department of Navy needed skilled workers to repair the ships and vessels of the West Indies Squadron. From the beginning there were problems recruiting and retaining skilled artisan. Locally masons, blacksmiths and joiners were unavailable and the Navy had to look to Norfolk Virginia to find enough workers. Once in Pensacola the new workers rapidly grew concerned with their isolation, unhealthy environment (especially malaria and yellow fever) and the lack of adequate housing. Working conditions at Pensacola led to labor disputes over wages and hours. The first labor strike occurred on 14 March 1827. The workers were upset that the Samuel Keepe, Superintendent of the Public Buildings, was deducting 40 cents per man per day from their wages for himself. Eventually Captain Woolsey promised to reduce the workday by one half hour and that Yard workers would receive their wages in full. Woolsey also gradually was able to lay out streets and create a rudimentary buildings which became the towns of Warrington and Woolsey.


iv Charles Brodie Naval Constructor Pay per month …………… $ 166.67
Robert Fell, Clerk to Do. ……………. 25.00
Richard Dirby N. Storekeeper ………. 141.64
Samuel Munro Clerk of the Yard ………….. 75.00
Loring C. Hubbell Clerk to the Commdt. ………….. 50.00
John Robinson Porter ………….. 25.00

Joiners

Pay per day

Masons

Pay per day

Isaac L. Middleton (Master)

$ 3.00

John Fisher

$ 2.50

Matthew Johnson

2.50

Will. Sayre

2.50

Thomas Stearns

2.50

Edward Daw

2.50

Thomas Redden

2.50

Peter Mc Craie

2.50

Robert Bunten

2.37

George Hendry

2.50

William Goodwin

2.37

6. Jonathan Gaithwait

2.50

James Hollowell

2.37

Painters


William Carsen

2.37

Francis Harrison

2.37

Matthew Smith

2.37

Christopher Walter

2.37

Edmond Sewell

2.37

3.Frederick Alba

2.37

Thomas Rodgers

2.37

Blacksmiths


Moses Stanford

2.37

Aaron Vellette (Master)

3.00

William Thomas

2.37

George Morris

2.50

William Middleton

2.37

John Gilmore

2.25

Benj. Boyer

2.37

John Woodrow

2.25

John Sunscant

2.37

James Vinator

1.75

Reuben Breckenship

2.37

6. John Fell

1.00

John A. Fisher

2.37

Carpenters


Sylvester Bennett

2.37

John Spieden Q man

2.25

Henry Boyer

2.37

James Livingston

2.25

John Ruddock

2.25

James Livingston Do.

2.25

James Parker

2.25

Thomas Fell

1.50

George Cramer

2.00

John Ray

1.25

John Hartford

1.75

Jasper Pendarris

1.12

Nathan Barron

1.37

Cooper


Joseph Ruby

1.25

1. William Barrett

2.00

27




Overseer

Pay per Day



1.Foster S. Chapman

2.00



Slave Laborers


[Slave] Laborers Continued


Thorton Minor

.50

James Dias

.50

James Samuel

.50

York Dias

.50

Thomas Samuel

.50

Luke Dias

.50

Harry Cartlett

.50

Samuel Dias

.50

Samuel Cartlett

.50

Peter Dias

.50

James Cartlett

.50

38


Phillip Cartlett

.50



Lewis Warr

.50



Caesar Robinson

.50



Robert Johnson

.50



Willis Hughes

.50



Joseph McIntire

.50



Beverley Lipscomb

.50



John Bush

.50



Everest Coulou

.50



Andrew Grant

.50



Moses - -

.50



Randal Anderson

.50



George Allen

.50



Leonard Beckwith

.50



Billy Armstrong

.50



Ephraim Armstrong

.50



Daniel Wilson

.50



Samuel Lawson

.50



Harry Lawson

.50



Bob Lawson

.50



Lewis Lawson

.50



Daniel Lawson

.50



Hummia Colin

.50



Daniel Brown

.50



Augustus Brown

.50



Abraham Ahrens

.50



James Ahrens

.50



     8 Carts Employed
    17 Mules
    3 Yoke of Oxen
    Samuel Munro (Signed) Clerk


 Recapitulation

    27 Joiners
    6 Masons
    3 Painters
    6 Blacksmiths
    5 Carpenters
    1 Overseer of Laborers
    38 Laborers
    87


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