Ice on Corvette
Two members of a corvette's crew clear ice from the ship's four-inch gun (centre). The sailor at right is using an axe.
Ice accumulation, an ever-present winter danger, was caused by freezing water coming from waves and from spray carried in the air. Because ice interfered with operation of a ship's equipment, and its added weight endangered a ship's stability, it regularly had to be removed. The sailors seen here are working on a ship in port; clearing ice while at sea was far more difficult and dangerous.
George Metcalf Archival Collection