Prize Crew

Prize crew is a term used to indicate a number of crew members of a ship chosen to take over the operations of a captured ship.

In the early days of sailing and up into the American Civil War, capturing enemy ships was quite common. As a result, warships optimistically carried extra crew members for use as prize crews.

Prize crews were required to take their prize to appropriate prize courts, which would determine whether the prize crew had sufficient cause to have the title of the prize awarded to them.

Today, as evidenced by results of sea battles during World War I and World War II, ships generally were sunk, not captured. Therefore, prize crews were no longer an integral part of a ship's complement. If, however, a ship was captured, a prize crew would be selected from the winning ship’s complement.

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Other articles related to "prize crew, crew, prize, prize crews, prizes":

USS Bermuda (1861) - Capture
... Trevett Abbot and a 30-man prize crew ... Members of her crew tried to justify their vessel’s compromising course and position by claiming that their captain had died of yellow fever and that no other navigator was on board ... and other varied commodities—as a lawful prize ...
Battle Of Camperdown - Aftermath - Return Journeys
... of British sailors placed aboard as prize crews were unable to cope alone, and in the high winds many masts collapsed to the deck and huge quantities of water leaked into the hulls ... Dutch Lieutenant Heilberg and the British Lieutenant Charles Bullen, with a small prize crew of 69 men ... The prize crew left on the second rescue boat sent from Russell, and Bullen and Heilberg waited for a third trip to bring them off with the remaining 30 wounded men ...
Prize Crew - Examples
... See USS Nightingale (1851) for prize crew and prize court example ... As Norway was neutral, the German prize crew were eventually interned and the vessel returned to her American owners ... In 1941, a Royal Navy prize crew sailed the captured, German, U-boat U-570 from Iceland to the United Kingdom ...
SS Kronprinz Wilhelm - German Auxiliary Cruiser (1914-1915) - Provisioning and Training
... The crew—mostly reservists and civilians—received a crash course in their duties in a warship and in general naval discipline ... A "prize crew" was selected and trained in the techniques of boarding captured vessels (prizes), inspecting cargo and ship's papers, and using ... Finally, all members of the crew were outfitted in some semblance of a naval uniform ...

Famous quotes containing the words crew and/or prize:

    Nor aught availed him now
    To have built in heav’n high tow’rs; nor did he scape
    By all his engines, but was headlong sent
    With his industrious crew to build in hell.
    John Milton (1608–1674)

    I prize the purity of his character as highly as I do that of hers. As a moral being, whatever it is morally wrong for her to do, it is morally wrong for him to do. The fallacious doctrine of male and female virtues has well nigh ruined all that is morally great and lovely in his character: he has been quite as deep a sufferer by it as woman, though mostly in different respects and by other processes.
    Angelina Grimké (1805–1879)