Rules Regarding Saluting
The Bluejacket's Manual, United States Navy, by Lieutenant Norman R. Van Der Veer, U.S. Navy, 1917
1. Nothing gives a better indication of the state of discipline than the observance of the forms of military courtesy.
2. From time immemorial the salute has been a form of military courtesy that has been strictly and conscientiously observed by men of every nationality who followed the profession of arms.
3. In falling in with ships of foreign nations, or in entering foreign ports, the National Salute of 21 Guns is fired. and, in turn, answered by the foreign ships or batteries.
4. In regard to personal salutes, a junior always salutes a senior. An enlisted man salutes an officer, and the very officer saluted is called to account if he fails to salute another officer, his senior.
5. Enlisted men are often lax in the matter of saluting. This laxity is usually due to ignorance of how properly to salute, or to uncertainty as to when the salute is required.
6. If uncertainty exists in regard to the necessity for saluting. the only rule to follow is to render the salute. It is far better to salute, even if in doubt as to the necessity for so doing, than to expose yourself to the chance of censure and reprimand. and to be thought ignorant of the rules of one of the most essential and elementary requirements of your profession.
7. Unfortunately there are some men who deliberately fail to salute an officer, and then, when called to account, rely upon giving some babyish excuse about their having failed to see him, or something equally foolish and untrue. By observing the petty officers and seamen, recruits will learn that the higher a man's rating the better he realizes the necessity for saluting, and the more pride he takes in rendering the salute properly.
8. How properly to render the salute, and the few simple rules regarding salutes should be amongst the first things learned by a recruit.