> does anyone have a description of the clothing worn by ships' boys.
> I am not sure personally but I am guessing trousers, shirt. But vest? cap/hat?
> shoes (sometime,all the time, never)?
Colin--on page 25 in D.A.B. Ronald's 2009 "Young Nelsons" it is noted that the Marine Society, which placed young,off the street boys in the navy as servants,provided clothing and bedding to them.
"A boy's kitbag typically included a felt hat,two worsted caps,a kersey pea jacket,waistcoat,shirts,up to three pairs of drawers,trousers,and a couple of pairs of shoes. Bedding comprised a mattress, pillow, and blanket. Kitting out the boys was the most important contribution the Society made, not only in financial terms but also in enabling the boys to feel at one with the seaboard life. More significantly, a set of new clothes and bedding 'detached' the recruit from his disease-carrying lice." On page 21 it also mentions that "each Boy shall have a Testament, Common Prayer Book, Clasp Knife and a printed list of their Cloths." These references are from the Seven Years War period, and a specific group of boys, but I hope that they may be a guide to what sort of things a ship's boy would generally need.
Lee Davis, Surgeon, Royal Navy, "Splints & Splices"