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A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, such as defense, research, and fishing. Ships are generally distinguished from boats, based on size, shape, load capacity, and tradition. In the Age of Sail a "ship" was a sailing vessel defined by its sail plan of at least three square rigged masts and a full bowsprit.

Ships have supported exploration, trade, warfare, migration, colonization, and science. After the 15th century, new crops that had come from and to the Americas via the European seafarers significantly contributed to the world population growth. Ship transport is responsible for the largest portion of world commerce.

As of 2016, there were more than 49,000 merchant ships, totaling almost 1.8 billion dead weight tons. Of these 28% were oil tankers, 43% were bulk carriers, and 13% were container ships.

Ship Media

1864
1864
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2014
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29,238 media by topicpage 1 of 293
Franconia I

Franconia I

Local Accession Number: PC 138..Description: Steamship from the U.K. ..Photographer: Unknown..Source: Unknown..Size: 3x5..Medium: Print, Color..Date: 11-22-1913

Wilson's Arrival at Brest, France

Wilson's Arrival at Brest, France

Local Accession Number: PC 102..Description: Wilson arrives in Brest, France for the Paris Peace Conference...Photographer: Unknown..Source: Unknown..Size: 3.5x5.5..Medium: Print, Sepia..Date: 1918

Wilson on Board U.S.S. George Washington

Wilson on Board U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 182 ..Description: President Wilson on the bridge of the U.S.S. George Washington en route to England and Paris for the Peace Conference. .From left to right: Edith Benham (Secretary to ... more

Franconia I

Franconia I

Local Accession Number: PC 138..Description: Steamship from the U.K. ..Photographer: Unknown..Source: Unknown..Size: 3x5..Medium: Print, Color..Date: 11-22-1913

U.S.S. George Washington

U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 2395..Description: U.S.S. George Washington at sea...Photographer: Unknown..Source: Donated by John Zilliox..Size: 3x5..Medium: Photocopy, Black and White..Date: 1918?

President Wilson Boarding U.S.S. George Washington

President Wilson Boarding U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: CTG 00019..Description: President Wilson boarding the U.S.S. George Washington, likely leaving from the Paris Peace Conference...Photographer: Unknown..Source: Potomac Books, Cary T. Gra... more

U.S.S. George Washington

U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 2395..Description: U.S.S. George Washington at sea...Photographer: Unknown..Source: Donated by John Zilliox..Size: 3x5..Medium: Photocopy, Black and White..Date: 1918?

Wilson's Arrival at Brest, France

Wilson's Arrival at Brest, France

Local Accession Number: PC 102..Description: Wilson arrives in Brest, France for the Paris Peace Conference...Photographer: Unknown..Source: Unknown..Size: 3.5x5.5..Medium: Print, Sepia..Date: 1918

Den lille Havfrue

Den lille Havfrue

The littel mermaid..KB id: turck_62137..Photo: Sven Türck (1897-1954)..Department of Maps, Prints and Photographs, The Royal Library, Denmark.

Franconia I

Franconia I

Local Accession Number: PC 138..Description: Steamship from the U.K. ..Photographer: Unknown..Source: Unknown..Size: 3x5..Medium: Print, Color..Date: 11-22-1913

Wilson's Arrival at Brest, France

Wilson's Arrival at Brest, France

Local Accession Number: PC 102..Description: Wilson arrives in Brest, France for the Paris Peace Conference...Photographer: Unknown..Source: Unknown..Size: 3.5x5.5..Medium: Print, Sepia..Date: 1918

Wilson on Board U.S.S. George Washington

Wilson on Board U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 182 ..Description: President Wilson on the bridge of the U.S.S. George Washington en route to England and Paris for the Peace Conference. .From left to right: Edith Benham (Secretary to ... more

Wilson on Board U.S.S. George Washington

Wilson on Board U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 182 ..Description: President Wilson on the bridge of the U.S.S. George Washington en route to England and Paris for the Peace Conference. .From left to right: Edith Benham (Secretary to ... more

President Wilson Boarding U.S.S. George Washington

President Wilson Boarding U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: CTG 00019..Description: President Wilson boarding the U.S.S. George Washington, likely leaving from the Paris Peace Conference...Photographer: Unknown..Source: Potomac Books, Cary T. Gra... more

U.S.S. George Washington

U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 2395..Description: U.S.S. George Washington at sea...Photographer: Unknown..Source: Donated by John Zilliox..Size: 3x5..Medium: Photocopy, Black and White..Date: 1918?

President Wilson Boarding U.S.S. George Washington

President Wilson Boarding U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: CTG 00019..Description: President Wilson boarding the U.S.S. George Washington, likely leaving from the Paris Peace Conference...Photographer: Unknown..Source: Potomac Books, Cary T. Gra... more

Map of the Isthmus of Panama Showing the Proposed Interoceanic Ship Canal

Map of the Isthmus of Panama Showing the Proposed Interoceanic Ship Ca...

This map was created during the 1875 U.S. Surveying Expedition commanded by E. P. Lull. Manuscript Hydrographic Charts

Group of Emigrants Waiting for Arrival of Ship, Southampton, England

Group of Emigrants Waiting for Arrival of Ship, Southampton, England

Public Health Service Historical Photograph File

Outboard Profile for a Second Class Light Ship

Outboard Profile for a Second Class Light Ship

This item contains information on the dimensions and tonnage. Plans for Lighthouses and Illumination Apparatus

Patent Drawing for C. P. Fest's Air Ship
Loud 7, Passengers aboard ship to Alaska, c. 1886. Photograph by M. Lorenz

Loud 7, Passengers aboard ship to Alaska, c. 1886. Photograph by M. Lo...

Photographs and Charts of Treasury Agent Abial P. Loud

U.S.S. Brooklyn

U.S.S. Brooklyn

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Ship, Samuel F - Age: [Blank], Year: [BLANK] - Mississippi Ninth Infantry, Q-Sp

Ship, Samuel F - Age: [Blank], Year: [BLANK] - Mississippi Ninth Infan...

Carded Records Showing Military Service of Soldiers Who Fought in Confederate Organizations

Ship, James - Age: [Blank], Year: [BLANK] - Mississippi Eighteenth Cavalry, N-Y AND Twenty-fourth Battalion, Cavalry, A-B

Ship, James - Age: [Blank], Year: [BLANK] - Mississippi Eighteenth Cav...

Carded Records Showing Military Service of Soldiers Who Fought in Confederate Organizations

Jaffrey Point -- New Hampshire

Jaffrey Point -- New Hampshire

Caption: Jaffrey Point Light Station, New Hampshire. Named Jerrys Point Lighthouse until July 1, 1903. Named Jaffrey Point since July 1, 1903. Date: 7/1/1903 District: 1 State: NH New Hampshire -- Jaffrey Point

Crew of a Ship

Crew of a Ship

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

U.S.S. Washington

U.S.S. Washington

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Ship, T D - Age [Blank], Year: [Blank] - First Confederate Engineer Troops, S-Z - Raised Directly by the Confederate Government

Ship, T D - Age [Blank], Year: [Blank] - First Confederate Engineer Tr...

Carded Records Showing Military Service of Soldiers Who Fought in Confederate Organizations

Ship, Samuel S - Age: [Blank], Year: [BLANK] - Mississippi Ninth Infantry, Q-Sp

Ship, Samuel S - Age: [Blank], Year: [BLANK] - Mississippi Ninth Infan...

Carded Records Showing Military Service of Soldiers Who Fought in Confederate Organizations

Ship, Daniel S - Age: [Blank], Year: [BLANK] - Mississippi Ninth Infantry, Q-Sp

Ship, Daniel S - Age: [Blank], Year: [BLANK] - Mississippi Ninth Infan...

Carded Records Showing Military Service of Soldiers Who Fought in Confederate Organizations

Photograph of a Ship

Photograph of a Ship

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Eight Officers on a Ship

Eight Officers on a Ship

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

S.S. Slavonia from Caisson, Dry Dock 3

S.S. Slavonia from Caisson, Dry Dock 3

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

S.S. Slavonia from Head, Dry Dock 3

S.S. Slavonia from Head, Dry Dock 3

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

U.S.S. New York Stringer Raised for Riveting, Port Side of the Ship

U.S.S. New York Stringer Raised for Riveting, Port Side of the Ship

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

U.S.S. New York Stringer Raised for Riveting, Port Side of the Ship

U.S.S. New York Stringer Raised for Riveting, Port Side of the Ship

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

U.S.S. New York Stringer Raised for Riveting, Starboard Side of the Ship

U.S.S. New York Stringer Raised for Riveting, Starboard Side of the Sh...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Dent in Port Side of Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland

Dent in Port Side of Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland

This photograph depicts the dent in the Port Side of Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland that made April 20, 1914 off Quarantine by Porto Rico Steamer Carolina. Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Bu... more

Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland in Dry Dock Number 4

Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland in Dry Dock Number 4

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Dent in Port Side of Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland

Dent in Port Side of Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland

This photograph depicts the dent in the Port Side of Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland that made April 20, 1914 off Quarantine by Porto Rico Steamer Carolina. Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Bu... more

Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland in Dry Dock Number 4

Hamburg American Steamship Cleveland in Dry Dock Number 4

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

S.S. Koenigen Luise in Dry Dock 3, Looking Northeast

S.S. Koenigen Luise in Dry Dock 3, Looking Northeast

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Reconstruction Launching Ways For New Battle Ship, Yard Labor

Reconstruction Launching Ways For New Battle Ship, Yard Labor

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Launching Ways for Battle Ship Construction, Pile Driving South End, Looking West, Yard Labor, Monthly Progress Photo

Launching Ways for Battle Ship Construction, Pile Driving South End, L...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Launching Ways For Battle Ship Construction, Seawall at West Side of Entrance, Looking South, Yard Labor, Monthly Progress Photo

Launching Ways For Battle Ship Construction, Seawall at West Side of E...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Launching Ways For Battle Ship Construction Seawall West Side of Entrance, Looking North West, Yard Labor

Launching Ways For Battle Ship Construction Seawall West Side of Entra...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Failure of Quay Wall Steam Ship Whitney Basin, Looking Southeast

Failure of Quay Wall Steam Ship Whitney Basin, Looking Southeast

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Reconstruction of Launching Ways For Battle Ship, Monthly Progress Photo, Looking North, Yard Labor

Reconstruction of Launching Ways For Battle Ship, Monthly Progress Pho...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Reconstruction of Launching Ways for Battle Ship, Looking North West , Yard Labor, Monthly Progress Photo

Reconstruction of Launching Ways for Battle Ship, Looking North West ,...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Reconstruction of Launching Ways for Battle Ship, Looking North, Yard Labor

Reconstruction of Launching Ways for Battle Ship, Looking North, Yard ...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Dry Dock 4, First Vessel Docked, USS Utah

Dry Dock 4, First Vessel Docked, USS Utah

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Dry Dock No. 4, First Vessel Docked - U.S.S. Utah

Dry Dock No. 4, First Vessel Docked - U.S.S. Utah

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Argentine Battleship Rivadavia Just About in Dry Dock No. 4, Looking Northeast, Showing Clearance Between Sides of Ship and Dock

Argentine Battleship Rivadavia Just About in Dry Dock No. 4, Looking N...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Athletic Field Looking Northeast Showing North Goal, Spectators' Stands, Tennis Court and Receiving Ship Washington

Athletic Field Looking Northeast Showing North Goal, Spectators' Stand...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Athletic Field, Looking North, Showing Goal, Spectators Stands, Tennis Court, and Receiving Ship Washington

Athletic Field, Looking North, Showing Goal, Spectators Stands, Tennis...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

From Photo of S.S. Carpathia in Dry Dock 4 at Erie Basin, Brooklyn, New York

From Photo of S.S. Carpathia in Dry Dock 4 at Erie Basin, Brooklyn, Ne...

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Scene on bridge of an American Ship in British waters
Scene at a Scottish Ship Building Yard

Scene at a Scottish Ship Building Yard

British Photographs of World War I

Ship's company U.S.S "Allen"

Ship's company U.S.S "Allen"

British Photographs of World War I

U.S baseball players return to their ship in British waters
Wilson Disembarking U.S.S. George Washington

Wilson Disembarking U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 185..Description: The President and Mrs. Wilson, disembarking the U.S.S. Washington, en route to Europe for the Paris Peace Conference...Photographer: U.S. Signal Corps..Source: Research... more

Wilson Disembarking U.S.S. George Washington

Wilson Disembarking U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 185..Description: The President and Mrs. Wilson, disembarking the U.S.S. Washington, en route to Europe for the Paris Peace Conference...Photographer: U.S. Signal Corps..Source: Research... more

U.S.S. George Washington

U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 184..Description: The U.S.S. Washington at sea, carrying President Wilson et al. to Europe for the Peace Conference. ..Photographer: U.S. Signal Corps..Source: Research Library, 20th Cen... more

U.S.S. George Washington

U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 186..Description: President Wilson and Captain McCauley on the bridge of the U.S.S. George Washington...Photographer: U.S. Signal Corps..Source: Research Library, 20th Century Fox..Size:... more

U.S.S. George Washington

U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 184..Description: The U.S.S. Washington at sea, carrying President Wilson et al. to Europe for the Peace Conference. ..Photographer: U.S. Signal Corps..Source: Research Library, 20th Cen... more

Punjab sentry aboard a British ship in the Persian Gulf
Bridge of U.S. ship fitted with glass windows

Bridge of U.S. ship fitted with glass windows

British Photographs of World War I

Gun practice aboard U.S. ship

Gun practice aboard U.S. ship

British Photographs of World War I

Type of German U-boat at Harwich, England

Type of German U-boat at Harwich, England

British Photographs of World War I

Cooks aboard U.S. ship at Queenstown, Ireland

Cooks aboard U.S. ship at Queenstown, Ireland

British Photographs of World War I

Boys of the British Navy at school aboard ship

Boys of the British Navy at school aboard ship

British Photographs of World War I

Survivors from torpedoed merchant ship. Queenstown, Ireland
U.S. Depot Ship "Melville". In British waters

U.S. Depot Ship "Melville". In British waters

British Photographs of World War I

U.S.S. George Washington

U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 186..Description: President Wilson and Captain McCauley on the bridge of the U.S.S. George Washington...Photographer: U.S. Signal Corps..Source: Research Library, 20th Century Fox..Size:... more

Ship's mascot

Ship's mascot

British Photographs of World War I

Officers of U.S depot ship "Melville" and newspaper men
Riffle drill aboard ship. British Navy

Riffle drill aboard ship. British Navy

British Photographs of World War I

U.S. Destroyers tied up along side depot ship "Melville"
Officers of U.S.S. "Melville", Depot Ship in British Waters
U.S.S. George Washington

U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 186..Description: President Wilson and Captain McCauley on the bridge of the U.S.S. George Washington...Photographer: U.S. Signal Corps..Source: Research Library, 20th Century Fox..Size:... more

Wilson Disembarking U.S.S. George Washington

Wilson Disembarking U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 185..Description: The President and Mrs. Wilson, disembarking the U.S.S. Washington, en route to Europe for the Paris Peace Conference...Photographer: U.S. Signal Corps..Source: Research... more

Officers of U.S. Navy Aboard U.S. Ship in British Waters
Bringing survivors ashore from torpedoed mechant ship
U.S.S. George Washington

U.S.S. George Washington

Local Accession Number: 184..Description: The U.S.S. Washington at sea, carrying President Wilson et al. to Europe for the Peace Conference. ..Photographer: U.S. Signal Corps..Source: Research Library, 20th Cen... more

British officers playing hockey aboard ship

British officers playing hockey aboard ship

British Photographs of World War I

Volunteers for Zeebrugge from one ship's company

Volunteers for Zeebrugge from one ship's company

British Photographs of World War I

Crow's Nest aboard U.S. Ship in British waters

Crow's Nest aboard U.S. Ship in British waters

British Photographs of World War I

Sailing Ship Chas J. Lister on the Cape Cod Canal

Sailing Ship Chas J. Lister on the Cape Cod Canal

Construction Project Photographs

Hydraulic Ship Frame Bender

Hydraulic Ship Frame Bender

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Hydraulic Ship Frame Bender

Hydraulic Ship Frame Bender

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Steamship James S. Whitney on the Cape Cod Canal

Steamship James S. Whitney on the Cape Cod Canal

Construction Project Photographs

Sailing Ship Jennie S. Hall on the Cape Cod Canal

Sailing Ship Jennie S. Hall on the Cape Cod Canal

Construction Project Photographs

Scales for Experimental Purposes Aboard Ship, Loading Position

Scales for Experimental Purposes Aboard Ship, Loading Position

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

Scales for Experimental Purposes Aboard Ship, Weighing Position

Scales for Experimental Purposes Aboard Ship, Weighing Position

Photographs of the Construction and Repair of Buildings, Facilities, and Vessels at the New York Navy Yard

U.S. National Archives

The objects in this collection are from The U.S. National Archives. The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) was established in 1934 by President Franklin Roosevelt. NARA keeps those Federal records that are judged to have continuing value—about 2 to 5 percent of those generated in any given year. There are approximately 10 billion pages of textual records; 12 million maps, charts, and architectural and engineering drawings; 25 million still photographs and graphics; 24 million aerial photographs; 300,000 reels of motion picture film; 400,000 video and sound recordings; and 133 terabytes of electronic data. All of these materials are preserved because they are important to the workings of Government, have long-term research worth, or provide information of value to citizens.

Disclaimer: A work of the U.S. National Archives is "a work prepared by an officer or employee" of the federal government "as part of that person's official duties." In general, under section 105 of the Copyright Act, such works are not entitled to domestic copyright protection under U.S. law and are therefore in the public domain. This website is developed as a part of the world's largest public domain archive, PICRYL.com, and not developed or endorsed by the U.S. National Archives. https://www.picryl.com

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