The Charles W. Morgan general order book contains 57 orders (33 pages) that Morgan issued to the United States Navy's Mediterranean Squadron on November 20, 1841, and April 11, 1842. The orders pertain primarily to officers' duties and conduct, and to logistical issues.
The orders, issued at Port Mahon, Minorca, follow a 2-page introduction that states the necessity of discipline within the navy. Some guidelines pertain to the frequency of muster rolls, returns, financial records, and other reports; inspections of ships, guns, and handheld weapons; and regular training exercises. Many orders concern the health and conduct of officers and crew, including procedures for admitting the sick or infirm to a naval hospital. Morgan provided instructions for officers' conduct while on shore leave and forbade any sailor from discussing the fleet's movements with unauthorized individuals. One order contains a list of salutes (order 30, pp. 14-15), and others call for the establishment of shipboard schools for midshipmen (order 49, pp. 27-28) and boys (order 51, p. 29). The final order prohibits crews and officers from presenting swords or other acknowledgments to commanding officers (order 57, pp. 32-33).