This paper is devoted to the tracking control of a class of uncertain surface vessels. The main contributions focus on the considerable relaxation of the severe restrictions on system uncertainties and reference trajectory in the related literature. Specifically, all the system parameters are unknown and the disturbance is not necessarily to be differentiable in the paper, but either unknown parameters or disturbance is considered but the other one is excluded in the related literature, or both of them are considered but the disturbance must be continuously differentiable. Moreover, the reference trajectories in the related literature must be at least twice continuously differentiable and themselves as well as their time derivatives must be known for feedback, which are generalized to a more broad class ones that are unknown and only one time continuously differentiable in the paper. To solve the control problem, a novel practical tracking control scheme is presented by using backstepping scheme and adaptive technique, and in turn to derive an adaptive state-feedback controller which guarantees that all the states of the resulting closed-loop system are bounded while the tracking error arrives at and then stay within an arbitrary neighborhood of the origin. Finally, simulation is provided to validate the effectiveness of the proposed theoretical results.