Slop chest: [noun] A stock of merchandise, such as clothing, tobacco, etc., maintained aboard merchant ships for sale to the crew.

October 7, 1942

Operations Regulations No. 13
Pertaining to Service Agreement for Vessels of Which the
War Shipping Administration is Owner or Owner Pro Hac Vice
(Dry Cargo and Passenger Vessels and Tankers)


The following provision of the Navigation Laws of the United States (46 U.S.C. 670-671) is quoted:

"Every vessel mentioned in section forty-five hundred and sixty-nine of the Revised Statutes shall also be provided with a slop chest, which shall contain a complement of clothing for the intended voyage for each seaman employed, including boots or shoes, hats or caps, under clothing and outer clothing, oiled clothing, and everything necessary for the wear of a seaman; also a full supply of tobacco and blankets.

Any of the contents of the slop chest shall be sold, from time to time, to any or every seaman applying therefor, for his own use, at a profit not exceeding 10 per centum of the reasonable wholesale value of the same at the port at which the voyage commenced.

And if any such vessel is not provided, before sailing, as herein required, the owner shall be liable to a penalty of not more than $500. The provisions of this section shall not apply to vessels plying between the United States and the Dominion of Canada, Newfoundland, the Bermuda Islands, the Bahama Islands, the West Indies, Mexico, and, Central America.

Pursuant thereto, General Agents of WSA shall provide a slop chest for the benefit of seamen aboard each vessel as soon as it enters service.

The Master shall submit to the General Agent a requisition for the items required for the intended voyage and the General Agent shall purchase sane for account of WSA and arrange for delivery of same aboard ship to the custody of the Master.

The General Agent shall supply the Master with the cost price of each item and the Master shall sell, from time to time as specified by him, any of the contents of the slop chest to any or every seaman applying therefor.

The Master shall charge for each item a price approximating, but not exceeding 110% of the reasonable wholesale value of the same at the port at which the voyage commenced.

All receipts of the Master shall be accounted for to the General Agent.

The General Agents shall account to WSA for the cost of the slop chest and receipts in accordance with the accounting regulations of WSA.

Neither the General Agents nor the Master shall place insurance on the contents of the slop chest purchased for account of WSA as the WSA assumes all risks, marine and war, thereon.

It shall be the responsibility of each General Agent and Master to exercise reasonable care and diligence in the compliance with the Owner’s obligations hereunder and in the protection and disposition of the contents of the slop chests.

(Sgd.) J. E. Cushing
Assistant Deputy Administrator for Ship Operations


Photos of mariners in work clothes -- knit watchcap, sweatshirt and dungarees; chambray or khaki shirts, tee shirts and dungarees or chino pants.

shipboard dress
shipboard clothing

[List of items included in slop chest and maximum purchase price to be paid by ship operator. The price charged the mariner was 10% over the purchase price.] No cigarettes are included in this list, because they were supplied free to mariners and servicemen by the tobacco companies.


Item No. Description Ceiling price $
1 Belts, web 0.45 each
2 Caps, engineer's 0.54 each
3 Caps, fireman 0.16 each
4 Caps, twill, white 0.45 each
5 Caps, watch, wool 0.79 each
6 Coats, dungaree 2.25 each
7 Coats, foul weather, short 4.27 each
8 Coats, foul weather, long 6.97 each
9 Coats, rubber, 3/14 length 5.71 each
10 Drawers, cotton, briefs 0.35 each
11 Drawers, cotton, shorts 0.46 pair
12 Drawers, wool and cotton 1.97 pair
13 Gloves, canton flannel 0.21 pair
14 Gloves, leather palm  

Safety Cuff

0.57 pair

Knit Wrist

0.66 pair
15 Glove, woolen 1.07 pair
16 Handkerchiefs, colored 0.10 each
17 Handkerchiefs, white 0.08 each
18 Hats, middy, white 0.80 each
19 Helmets, sun 1.63 each
20 Jackets, melton 6.92 each
21 Jerseys, turtleneck 3.35 each
22 Shirts, broadcloth, gray 2.27 each
23 Shirts, broadcloth, khaki 2.14 each
24 Shirts, broadcloth, white 1.66 each
25 Shirts, chambray, blue 0.95 each
26 Shirts, chino, khaki 2.56 each
27 Shirts, flannel 2.43 each
28 Shirts, jean, khaki 1.63 each
29 Shorts, drill, khaki 1.95 each
30 Socks, boot 0.91 pair
31 Socks, cotton 0.22 pair
32 Socks, wool and cotton 0.46 pair
33 Sou'westers 1.34 each
34 Sweatshirts 0.83 each
35 Ties, four-in-hand, black 0.31 each
36 Trousers, chino, gray 3.13 pair
37 Trousers, chino, khaki 3.03 pair
38 Trousers drill, khaki 1.91 pair
39 Trousers, dungaree 1.69 pair
40 Trousers, foul weather 4.31 pair
41 Undershirts, athletic 0.31 each
42 Undershirts, tee 0.50 each
43 Undershirts, wool and cotton 1.97 each


Item No. Description Ceilingprice $
44 Boots, rubber, knee 3.96 pair
45 Boots, rubber, 3/4 length 5.47 pair
46 Clogs, shower 0.43 pair
47 Shoes, work, low, black 4.67 pair
48 Shoes, work, low, black, Endicott-Johnson #1209 3.10 pair


Item No. Description Ceiling price $
49 Blades, razor  


0.17 pkg.


0.19 pkg.


0.53 pkg.
50 Brushes, shaving  
  Ever-Ready #79A 0.48 each
51 Brushes, tooth  

Johnson and Johnson "Tek"

0.15 each
52 Cream, shaving, lather  

Palmolive, large

0.22 tube

Mennen, large

0.24 tube

Williams, large

0.24 tube
53 Cream, shaving, brushless  

Palmolive, large

0.22 tube

Mennen, large

0.24 tube

Barbosol, 25˘ size

0.15 tube

Williams, large

0.17 tube
54 Lotion, after shave  

Mennen, 50˘ size

0.34 bottle

Williams, 5 ounce

0.34 bottle

Palmolive, 5 ounce

0.27 bottle
55 Mouthwash  
  Listerine Antiseptic, 7 ounce Bottle 0.34 bottle
56 Paste, tooth  

Colgate, large

0.17 tube

Kolynos, medium

0.16 tube
57 Powder, foot  

Mennen’s Quinsana, 50˘ size

0.34 can
58 Powder, talcum  

Palmolive, large

0.20 can

Mennen, 25˘ size

0.17 can


0.17 can
59 Powder, tooth  

Colgates, large

0.17 can

Kolynos, medium

0.16 can
60 Razors, safety  


0.27 each


0.38 each

Shick injector

0.63 each
61 Tonic, hair  

Vaseline, 6 oz. bottle

0.53 bottle


Item No. Description Ceiling price $
62 Candy Bars  

Baby Ruth; Butterfingers; O'Henry; Milky Way; Forever Yours; Dr. I.Q.; Ping; Snicker; Mars; Hershey's Almond, Milk Chocolate, Bittersweet and Tropical; Peter Paul's Walnut Caramel and Choclettos and Mound; Rockwood's Pecan Feast and Milk Chocolate; Welch’s Cocoanut, Fudge and Rum Frappe; Ghirardelli's Milk, Mint and Semi-Sweet Chocolates.

0.75 box
63 Charms 0.62 box
64 Gum, chewing  

Wrigley's Orbit

0.60 box

American Chicles' Assorted

0.65 box

Beechnut Assorted

0.66 box
65 Life Savers 0.61 box
66 Peanuts, Blanched, 8 ounce can  


0.23 can


Item No. Description Ceiling price $
67 Canopies, mosquito 2.32 each
68 Cards, playing  

Pinochle, U. S. "Aviator"

0.29 deck

Poker, U. S. "Aviator"

0.29 deck
69 Combs, Plastic, Black, 5 inch, Pocket 0.04 each
70 Glasses, sun  

"Super Solarex"

0.73 pair
71 Ink  

Parkers Quink

0.09 bottle
72 Kits, sewing 0.34 each
73 Kits, shoe polish, black  

Royal Esquire

0.99 each
74 Laces  

Black and brown, 27"

0.27 doz. pr.

Black and brown, 49"

0.37 doz. pr.
75 Pipes, briar  

"Knickerbocker Mountain Root"

0.80 each
76 Pipes, corncob 0.07 each
77 Polish, shoe, black, and brown  

Royal Esquire

0.17 can

Shinola, 2-1/8 oz.

0.07 can
78 Straps, wrist watch, gabardine 0.23 can


Baltimore, Maryland

Aaron M. Cohen
Berman Brothers
Seven Seas Supply Company
Samuel Meisel

Boston, Massachusetts

Atlantic Clothing Company
The Gloucester Store
Jacob Nudel
S. S. Pierce Company

Charleston, South Carolina

Doscher & Koester
Meddin Brothers

Galveston, Texas

O and H Supply Company
Druss Army & Navy Store

Jacksonville, Florida

Setzer’s Warehouse

Los Angeles, California

Glen L. Clark & Company
Hime & McDaniel
Smart Men’s Shop
Alfred J. Weston

Mobile, Alabama

J. Kamil & Company
Irving Ripps Clothing Company
Mobile Cigar & Tobacco Company

New Orleans, Louisiana

Bond Clothes
Marine Exchange
Saul Streiffer
Lou Welsch Marine Outfitter

New York, New York

M. Amster, Inc.
Ango-American Slop Chest Company
Max Backer
Louis Barkan Company
Joe Berg, Inc.
A. Berman
Empire State Ship Supply Company
I. Fein
H. Feldman & Company
S. Grundman Company, Inc.
George Karr Company
Mormax Company
Peselnick Brothers
M. Sanft
B. Schellenberg & Sons
Seven Seas Supply Company
Harry Some
Standard Supply Company
Grimshaw Confectionery Company

Norfolk, Virginia

Hamburg & Company
Joe Richnan
Victory Naval Store

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Lipschutz Bros. & Freedman

Port Arthur, Texas

Crittenden & Company
Price and Company

Portland, Maine

E. G. Foden Co.
Myer Jacobson

Portland, Oregon

General Grocery Company
Archie Goldsmith & Bro.
Portland Outdoor Store

San Francisco, California

California Notion & Toy Company
Charles G. Davis
Fairn and Swanson
General Export Company
General Ship Supply Company
Glaser Brothers
Joe Harris Company
Hilson's Department Store
M & N Distributors
Nelsen & Jorgensen
Joe Roberts & Company
Milton R. Senk
Simons, Boger & Company
B. M. Gale Company
Ships Tobacco and Supply Company

Savannah, Georgia

Alexander Grocery Company
Buchsbaum Brothers
Men’s Quality Shop

Seattle, Washington

American Ship Supply Company
Nordby Supply Company
Seamen’s Outfitting Company
Henry S. Silvery Company
Sterling Tobacco Company
Spring Wholesale Cigar Company

Operations Regulation No. 13, War Shipping Administration, October 7, 1942
Operations Regulation No. 13, Supplement No.1, War Shipping Administration, January 31, 1946
National Archives photo: Members of a `CHECKERBOARD' crew that brought a Liberty Ship from the U.S. to England, fondle their mascot `BOOKER.' (L-R) R. C. Woods, A. M. Mulzac, W. B. Shepard, and S. O'Neil." February 6, 1943. Baum. 111-SC-180663.

Photo of group: Bunker, John. Heroes in Dungarees: The Story of the American Merchant Marine in World War II. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1995

WSA Press Releases

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