Donald Chisholm has provided us with an important book. It is the first comprehensive history of the development of the U.S. Navy’s officer personnel system. Others have provided portions of the picture; Christopher McKee’s A Gentlemanly and Honorable Profession: The Creation of the U.S. Naval Officer Corps, 1794–1815 is an excellent treatment of the early years. But the Royal Navy, from which many American practices derive, is more thoroughly covered.
"Waiting for Dead Men’s Shoes:Origins and Development of the U.S. Navy’s OfficerPersonnel System, 1793–1941,"
Naval War College Review: Vol. 55
, Article 18.
Available at: http://digital-commons.usnwc.edu/nwc-review/vol55/iss3/18