Naval/Maritime History 17th of April - Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
20 February 1920 – Death of Robert Peary, American admiral and explorer (b. 1856)


Rear Admiral Robert Edwin Peary Sr. (/ˈpɪəri/; May 6, 1856 – February 20, 1920) was an American explorer and United States Navy officer who made several expeditions to the Arctic in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He is best known for claiming to have reached the geographic North Pole with his expedition on April 6, 1909.

Robert_Peary_self-portrait,_1909.jpg

Peary was born in Cresson, Pennsylvania, but was raised in Portland, Maine, following his father's death at a young age. He attended Bowdoin College, then joined the National Geodetic Survey as a draftsman. Peary enlisted in the navy in 1881, as a civil engineer. In 1885, he was made chief of surveying for the Nicaragua Canal (which was never built). Peary visited the Arctic for the first time in 1886, making an unsuccessful attempt to cross Greenland by dogsled. He returned in 1891 much better prepared, and by reaching Independence Fjord (in what is now known as Peary Land) conclusively proved that Greenland was an island. He was one of the first Arctic explorers to study Inuit survival techniques.

Robert_Edwin_Peary.jpg
Peary (pictured in furs in 1909) was one of the first Arctic explorers to study Inuit survival techniques.

On his 1898–1902 expedition, Peary set a new "Farthest North" record by reaching Greenland's northernmost point, Cape Morris Jesup. He also reached the northernmost point of the Western Hemisphere, at the top of Canada's Ellesmere Island. Peary made two further expeditions to the Arctic, in 1905–06 and in 1908–09. During the latter, he claimed to have reached the North Pole. Peary received a number of awards from geographical societies during his lifetime, and in 1911 received the Thanks of Congress and was promoted to rear admiral. He served two terms as president of The Explorers Club, and retired to Eagle Island.

Peary's claim to have reached the North Pole was widely debated in contemporary newspapers (along with a competing claim made by Frederick Cook), but eventually won widespread acceptance. However, in a 1989 book British explorer Wally Herbert concluded that Peary did not reach the pole, although he may have been as close as 60 miles (97 km). His conclusions have been widely accepted, although disputed by some authorities.


SS Roosevelt was an American steamship of the early 20th century. She was designed and constructed specifically for Robert Peary′s polar exploration expeditions, and she supported the 1908 expedition in which he claimed to have discovered the North Pole.

After her career with Peary, Roosevelt saw commercial use as a tug. She also operated as a United States Bureau of Fisheries supply ship and served as a United States Navy patrol vessel during World War I.



Peary's_steamer_Roosevelt,_Hudson-Fulton_Parade.jpg
Roosevelt in the Hudson-Fulton parade in 1909

Design and construction

SS_Roosevelt_(1905)_hull_under_construction.JPG
The hull of SS Roosevelt under construction.

SS_Roosevelt_(1905)_hull_trusses.JPG
The system of trusses that braced the hull against ice pressure.

United States Navy Commander Robert Peary designed Roosevelt specifically for operations in support of his Arctic exploration expeditions. His design attempted to incorporate the best features of previous polar exploration ships with innovations that would give her first-of-their-kind capabilities.

Peary designed the ship along the same lines as the Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen's schooner Fram, with the capability both to push through large floating ice packs and squeeze through and between ice fields. Roosevelt was a schooner with an ice-strengthened flexible wooden hull sheathed in steel and braced by a unique system of trusses. The wooden construction of her hull gave it both strength and the flexibility to bend rather than break when ice struck it or pressed against it, and her hull planking was assembled through a lamination process that gave her hull greater strength than a single piece of wood could provide. Her hull was 30 inches (76 cm) thick in places and was egg-shaped, a design that would allow her to rise and ride above sea ice that pushed against her below the waterline – almost popping up out of the ice – rather than be crushed by it. Her bow and stern both had 1-inch (2.5 cm) steel plating; the bow plating extended from her keel to 3 feet (0.91 m) above the waterline and 10 feet (3.0 m) aft, while the stern plating also extended from the keel to above the waterline and extended 14 feet (4.3 m) forward. Between the bow and stern plating, a layer of steel 3⁄8 of an inch (0.95 cm) thick and 6 feet (1.8 m) tall extended along the waterline.

Previous Arctic exploration ships had relied on sails for their primary propulsion, with engine power secondary, but Roosevelt became the first such ship to reverse that principle; she had three masts, all of which could carry sails for auxiliary propulsion, but relied for propulsion primarily on a powerful 1,000-horsepower (750 kW) compound steam engine – equipped with a special system that allowed it to generate 1,500 horsepower (1,100 kW) for brief periods if she encountered particularly massive ice concentrations – that drove a single, large propeller 11 feet (3.4 m) in diameter on a 1-foot (0.30 m)-diameter shaft designed to generate powerful thrust that could push her through drift ice. She had a sharply raked stemintended to increase her ramming and cutting power against sea ice, and a short length at the waterline and narrow beam to give her increased maneuverability when steering between ice packs. Her rudder was of a special design that gave her the maximum possible steering capacity while exposing the rudder as little as possible to ice damage. Her design minimized auxiliary structures, both to allow the stowage of sufficient fuel, supplies, and provisions for lengthy stays in the Arctic and to give her a relatively shallow draft so that she could operate in shallow waters and close to shore.

Roosevelt was the first ship ever built in the Western Hemisphere for Arctic exploration. Her construction cost US$150,000 and was funded in part by a US$50,000 gift by George Crocker, the youngest son of banker Charles Crocker. The McKay and Dix Shipyard laid her keel at Bucksport, Maine, on 19 October 1904. Sponsored by Peary's wife, Josephine Peary, who broke a bottle of champagne encased in ice across Roosevelt's bow, the ship was launched on 23 March 1905 and christened SS Roosevelt in honor of PresidentTheodore Roosevelt, who had openly supported Peary and played an instrumental role in arranging for the U.S. Navy to grant Peary a leave of absence so that he could continue his Arctic explorations. After fitting out, she was delivered to her owner, the Peary Arctic Club, in July 1905. She drew considerable attention because of her innovative design and at the time of her construction she was considered the strongest wooden vessel ever built.

Peary expeditions
1024px-SS_Roosevelt_crew,_Captain_Robert_Peary's_North_Pole_Expedition,_1905-1906_(22231901506).jpg
First Mate Thomas Gushue, Chief Engineer George Wardwill, and the crew of Roosevelt during the 1905–1906 expedition

On 16 July 1905, Roosevelt, captained by Robert Bartlett, set out from New York City on what was called the Roosevelt Expedition, sponsored by the Peary Arctic Club, with Peary and his party aboard. Roosevelt withstood a fire, rudder damage, and encounters with fog and icebergs and proceeded northward to Cape Sheridan in the north of Ellesmere Island. Made fast to the ice on 5 September 1905, she remained there through the winter of 1905–1906, becoming the second-largest ship ever to spend a winter in the Arctic. Peary and his party disembarked in January 1906 to head northward across the ice, and set a record for Farthest North, reaching a latitude of 87 degrees 6 minutes North before turning back. Roosevelt broke out of the ice on 4 July 1906, prior to the return of the expedition. Carried 20 nautical miles (37 km) south, she crashed against an ice foot a few days later, losing propeller blades, her rudder, and her sternpost. On 30 July 1906, Peary and his party returned to her after a six-month absence, and on 24 August 1906 Roosevelt broke free and turned southward. By mid-September 1906 she was far enough south to assure her escape from the ice before the winter freeze and in December 1906 she arrived at New York City.

On 8 July 1908, Roosevelt, again captained by Robert Bartlett, cleared New York Harbor and began a voyage north via Baffin Bay, Smith Sound, Kane Basin, Kennedy Channel, Hall Basin, and Robeson Channel into the Arctic Ocean. In early September 1908 she again made fast to the ice at Cape Sheridan to wait out the winter of 1908–1909 as Peary and his party tried for the North Pole. Departing Cape Sheridan in February 1909, Peary determined that he had reached the North Pole on 6 April 1909, and he and his party returned to Roosevelt. In July 1909, Roosevelt began the return voyage. In mid-August 1909 she left Smith Sound, and in September 1909 she rounded Cape Breton on Newfoundland Island and steamed to New York City. She arrived in New York flying the North Pole flag, the first ship ever to enter a harbor flying the flag. Not long afterward, she participated in a naval parade on the Hudson River as part of the 1909 Hudson-Fulton Anniversary Celebration.

After his return to New York, Peary proposed that the Peary Arctic Club and the National Geographic Society jointly undertake an expedition to the Antarctic, with the Peary Arctic Club contributing Roosevelt to the expedition. However, Roosevelt required expensive repairs because of ice damage she had suffered, and the Antarctic expedition never took place.



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Peary
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Roosevelt_(1905)
http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00097366/00029/18
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
20 February 1942 – The Action off Bougainville
While defending Lexington in a F4F "Wildcat" fighter, Lt Edward H. Butch O'Hare repeatedly attacks nine Japanese bombers and shoots down five and damaged a sixth. O'Hare is meritoriously promoted to lieutenant commander in April 1942 and awarded the Medal of Honor.


The Action off Bougainville was a naval and air engagement on the South Pacific Theater of World War II near Bougainville, Papua New Guinea on 20 February 1942. A United States Navy aircraft carrier task force on its way to raid the Imperial Japanese military base at Rabaul, New Britain was attacked by a force of land-based bombers of the Imperial Japanese Navy. The US task force was commanded by Admiral Wilson Brown and the Japanese aircraft forces were under the command of Eiji Gotō.

In the ensuing engagement, the Japanese air group lost 15 of 17 bombers sent to attack the American carrier group. The United States lost only two fighters in defence, and no ships were damaged. As a result of the loss of surprise, however, the Americans retired without raiding Rabaul as originally planned. Because of the heavy losses in bombers, the Japanese were forced to delay their planned invasion of New Guinea, giving the Allies more time to prepare defences against the Japanese advances in the South Pacific.

Mitsubishi_G4M_attacking_USS_Lexington_(CV-2)_on_20_February_1942.jpg1280px-G4M_shot_down_near_USS_Lexington_(CV-2)_1942.jpeg
A Mitsubishi G4M torpedo bomber photographed from Lexington's flight deck on 20 February 1942

1.JPG 2.JPG

Prelude
Following the capture of the port of Rabaul during the battle of Rabaul, Japanese forces proceeded to turn it into a major base. The allied command was concerned the fall of Rabaul threatened the San Francisco-Australia sea lane supply line and ordered the supply line to be patrolled. Admiral Chester William Nimitz and Admiral Brown devised a plan to solve the threat on the supply line by attacking the newly captured Rabaul. Task Force 11 (TF 11) and the ANZAC Squadron were tasked with undertaking the raid. Unfortunately, the ANZAC Squadron fuel oil supply was inadequate to accompany TF 11 to its launching point north-east of Rabaul for the planned 21 February air strike.

Battle
TF 11 with the carrier Lexington detected an unknown aircraft on radar 35 mi (30 nmi; 56 km) from the ship at 10:15 while still 450 mi (390 nmi; 720 km) from the harbour at Rabaul. A six-plane combat patrol was launched with two fighters directed to investigate the contact. These two planes, under command of Lieutenant Commander Thach, shot down a four-engined Kawanishi H6K4 "Mavis" flying boat about 43 mi (37 nmi; 69 km) out at 11:12. Two other planes of the combat patrol were sent to another radar contact 35 mi (30 nmi; 56 km) ahead, and shot down a second "Mavis" at 12:02. A third contact was made 80 mi (70 nmi; 130 km) out, but that plane reversed course and disappeared.

The Japanese search planes alerted Rabaul to the presence of US naval forces in the area. Vice Admiral Shigeyoshi Inoue, at the Imperial Japanese Fourth Fleet headquarters in Truk, ordered an initial air strike to be conducted from Rabaul; and ordered the heavy cruisers Aoba, Furutaka, Kinugasa, and Kako of cruiser Division 6 to intercept TF 11.

Seventeen Japanese Mitsubishi G4M1 "Betty" bombers of the 4th Kōkūtai took off from Vunakanau Aerodrome, Rabaul to attack TF 11. When Admiral Brown realised he had lost the element of surprise, he broke off the attack against Rabaul and started to retire from the area. A jagged vee signal was detected on air-search radar at 15:42. The contact was briefly lost, but reappeared at 16:25 47 mi (41 nmi; 76 km) west. Six Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats from Lexington were sent to intercept the incoming targets, while Lexington launched four more and another six, preparing to land, stood off to await developments. Their targets proved to be the 4th Kōkūtai's 2nd Chûtai, led by Lieutenant Masayoshi Nakagawa. Five of the nine incoming "Bettys" were shot down or cut out of formation during the approach. One of these was the Nakagawa's lead plane, the loss of which caused a delay to the attack run while command was passed to the next ranking pilot. The remaining four "Bettys" then turned into their run, but were then set upon by the six standby fighters. This, combined with Captain Frederick C. Sherman's adroit ship-handling, caused their bombs to land 3,000 yards short of the carrier.

Shortly afterwards, Nakagawa, still in control of his crippled plane, attempted to crash directly onto Lexington's flight deck. Sherman immediately put his stern to the attacker, while every available gun opened up on the incoming "Betty". His plane shot to pieces, and unable to stretch his glide, Nakagawa hit the water 75 yards astern of the carrier.

The remaining four "Bettys" attempted to clear the area, but were immediately swarmed by Wildcats. Three were shot down, at the cost of two F4Fs to return fire. The last managed to escape the fighters, but ran into an SBD piloted by VB-2's XO, Lieutenant Walter F. Henry. Henry overtook it and shot it down, leaving no survivors from the 2nd Chûtai.

A second formation of "Betty"s was detected by radar at 16:49, 12 mi (10 nmi; 19 km) out on the disengaged side of the task force. These were the 4th Kōkūtai's 1st Chûtai, led by the group CO, Lieutenant Commander Takuzo Ito. With the majority of fighters chasing the remains of the 2nd Chûtai, Ito's men were virtually unopposed. Only two Wildcats, flown by Lieutenant Edward "Butch" O'Hare and Lieutenant (junior grade) Marion Dufilho, were available to confront the intruders. The two F4F pilots flew eastward and arrived 1,500 feet (460 m) above eight "Bettys" (reported as nine) flying close together in V formation 9 mi (7.8 nmi; 14 km) out at 17:00. During the first pass, Dufilho's guns jammed, leaving O'Hare alone to protect the carrier from the enemy.

O'Hare employed a high-side diving attack from the right side of the formation, accurately placing bursts of gunfire into a "Betty"'s right engine and wing fuel tanks. When the stricken craft of Petty Officer 2nd Class Ryosuke Kogiku (3rd Shotai) on the right side of the formation abruptly lurched to starboard, O'Hare switched to the next plane up the line, that of Petty Officer 1st Class Koji Maeda (3rd Shotai leader). Maeda's plane caught fire, but his crew managed to put out the flames with "one single spurt of liquid...from the fire-extinguisher" Neither Maeda or Kogiku had sustained fatal damage, and would catch up with the group before bomb release.

With two "Bettys" knocked out of formation (albeit temporarily), O'Hare initiated another firing pass, this time from the left side. His first target was the outside plane, flown by Petty Officer 1st Class Bin Mori (2nd Shotai). Aiming across to the far side of Mori's bomber, O'Hare's bullets damaged the right engine and left fuel tank, forcing Mori to dump his bombs and abort his mission. With Mori out of combat, O'Hare next targeted Ito's senior wingman, Petty Officer 1st Class Susumu Uchiyama (1st Shotai), which blazed up and fell towards the sea.

Having knocked out four bombers, O'Hare returned to the left side for a third firing pass. By now, Ito was nearing the bomb release point, which left very little time to take action. The first plane to go down was Ito's deputy, Lieutenant (junior grade) Akira Mitani (2nd Shotai leader). Mitani's departure left Ito's command plane exposed, and O'Hare opened up on it. O'Hare's concentrated fire caused the plane's port engine nacelle to literally jump out of its mountings and fall from the plane. Indeed, the explosion was so violent that the 1st Chûtai pilots were convinced an AA burst had struck their commander's plane. With a gaping hole in its left wing, Ito's plane dropped towards the sea.

Shortly afterwards, O'Hare made another firing pass against Maeda (who had now caught up), but ran out of ammunition before he could finish him. Frustrated, he pulled away to allow the ships to fire their anti-aircraft guns. O'Hare believed he had shot down six bombers and damaged a seventh. Captain Sherman would later reduce this to five, as four of the reported nine bombers were still overhead when he pulled out. In fact, he had only shot down three bombers - Uchiyama's, Mitani's, and Ito's - a total backed up by his own CO. Lieutenant Commander John Thach, hurrying towards the scene with reinforcements after mopping up the 2nd Chûtai, arrived in time to see three enemy bombers falling in flames simultaneously.

With Ito knocked out, the remaining four pilots dropped their bombs, three of them targeting the Lexington. Despite the last-minute disruption, the 1st Chûtai had set up their run much better than the 2nd, planting their nearest bomb just 100 feet astern of the Lexington. Maeda, however, was unable to line up properly, and instead released his bombs on the cruiser Minneapolis. They missed 100 yards to port.

As the surviving "Bettys" withdrew, Ito's command pilot, Warrant Officer Chuzo Watanabe, tried to hit Lexington with his damaged plane, but missed and flew into the water near Lexington at 17:12. Maeda, witnessing the event, believed that both Ito and Mitani (who had gone down moments earlier) had crashed "bombs, crew and all" into the carrier.

Although O'Hare could no longer shoot, the remaining 1st Chûtai pilots were not out of danger. A fourth, flown by Petty Officer 2nd Class Tokiharu Baba (2nd Shotai), was brought down eight miles out by Thach's wingman. Of the remaining four, Petty Officer 1st Class Kosuke Ono (1st Shotai) was badly shot up during the retreat, and forced to crash-land on Nugava Island at 19:25 with several dead crewmembers. Maeda and Kogiku managed to reach Vunakanau at 19:50, while Mori, lost in a storm, ditched at Simpson Harbor at 20:10.

Aftermath
As a result of the loss of surprise, Brown cancelled the planned raid on Rabaul and retired from the area. Because of the high losses in bomber aircraft, the Japanese postponed their impending invasion of Lae-Salamaua, Papua New Guinea from 3–8 March 1942.

Two "Mavis" flying boats were also shot down which were shadowing the US force, as well as two other Japanese scout aircraft lost in operational accidents while participating in the day's action. The US lost two fighters to defensive gunfire from the bombers, but one pilot survived, while no damage was inflicted on the US warships. US Navy pilot Edward O'Hare was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions.


1280px-USS_Lexington_(CV-2)_leaving_San_Diego_on_14_October_1941_(80-G-416362).jpg
Aerial view of Lexington on 14 October 1941

USS Lexington (CV-2), nicknamed "Lady Lex", was an early aircraft carrier built for the United States Navy. She was the lead ship of the Lexington class; her only sister ship, Saratoga, was commissioned a month earlier. Originally designed as a battlecruiser, she was converted into one of the Navy's first aircraft carriers during construction to comply with the terms of the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922, which essentially terminated all new battleship and battlecruiser construction. The ship entered service in 1928 and was assigned to the Pacific Fleet for her entire career. Lexington and Saratoga were used to develop and refine carrier tactics in a series of annual exercises before World War II. On more than one occasion these included successfully staged surprise attacks on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The ship's turbo-electric propulsion system allowed her to supplement the electrical supply of Tacoma, Washington, during a drought in late 1929 to early 1930. She also delivered medical personnel and relief supplies to Managua, Nicaragua, after an earthquake in 1931.

Lexington was at sea when the Pacific War began on 7 December 1941, ferrying fighter aircraft to Midway Island. Her mission was cancelled and she returned to Pearl Harbor a week later. After a few days, she was sent to create a diversion from the force en route to relieve the besieged Wake Island garrison by attacking Japanese installations in the Marshall Islands. The island surrendered before the relief force got close enough, and the mission was cancelled. A planned attack on Wake Island in January 1942 had to be cancelled when a submarine sank the oiler required to supply the fuel for the return trip. Lexington was sent to the Coral Sea the following month to block any Japanese advances into the area. The ship was spotted by Japanese search aircraft while approaching Rabaul, New Britain, but her aircraft shot down most of the Japanese bombers that attacked her. Together with the carrier Yorktown, she successfully attacked Japanese shipping off the east coast of New Guinea in early March.

Lexington was briefly refitted in Pearl Harbor at the end of the month and rendezvoused with Yorktown in the Coral Sea in early May. A few days later the Japanese began Operation Mo, the invasion of Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, and the two American carriers attempted to stop the invasion forces. They sank the light aircraft carrier Shōhō on 7 May during the Battle of the Coral Sea, but did not encounter the main Japanese force of the carriers Shōkaku and Zuikaku until the next day. Aircraft from Lexington and Yorktown badly damaged Shōkaku, but the Japanese aircraft crippled Lexington. A mixture of air and aviation gasoline in her improperly drained aircraft fueling trunk lines (which ran from the keel tanks to her hangar deck) ignited, causing a series of explosions and fires that could not be controlled. Lexington was scuttled by an American destroyer during the evening of 8 May to prevent her capture. The wreck of Lexington was located in March 2018 by an expedition led by Paul Allen, who discovered the ship about 430 nautical miles (800 km) off the northeastern coast of Australia in the Coral Sea.


Lieutenant Commander Edward Henry "Butch" O'Hare (March 13, 1914 – November 26, 1943) was an American naval aviator of the United States Navy, who on February 20, 1942, became the Navy's first flying ace when he single-handedly attacked a formation of nine heavy bombers approaching his aircraft carrier. Even though he had a limited amount of ammunition, he managed to shoot down or damage several enemy bombers. On April 21, 1942, he became the first naval recipient of the Medal of Honor in World War II.

Butch_O'Hare.jpg

O'Hare's final action took place on the night of November 26, 1943, while he was leading the U.S. Navy's first-ever nighttime fighter attack launched from an aircraft carrier. During this encounter with a group of Japanese torpedo bombers, O'Hare's Grumman F6F Hellcat was shot down; his aircraft was never found. In 1945, the U.S. Navy destroyer USS O'Hare (DD-889) was named in his honor.

A few years later, Colonel Robert R. McCormick, publisher of the Chicago Tribune, suggested that the name of Chicago's Orchard Depot Airport be changed as a tribute to Butch O'Hare. On September 19, 1949, the Chicago, Illinois airport was renamed O'Hare International Airport to honor O'Hare's bravery. The airport displays a Grumman F4F-3 museum aircraft replicating the one flown by Butch O'Hare during his Medal of Honor flight. The Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat on display was recovered virtually intact from the bottom of Lake Michigan, where it sank after a training accident in 1943 when it went off the training aircraft carrier USS Wolverine (IX-64). In 2001, the Air Classics Museum remodeled the aircraft to replicate the F4F-3 Wildcat that O'Hare flew on his Medal of Honor flight. The restored Wildcat is exhibited in the west end of Terminal 2 behind the security checkpoint to honor O'Hare International Airport's namesake


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Action_off_Bougainville
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Lexington_(CV-2)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ed
ward_O%27Hare
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
20 February 1966 – Death of Chester W. Nimitz, American admiral (b. 1885)


Chester William Nimitz, Sr. (/ˈnɪmɪts/; February 24, 1885 – February 20, 1966) was a fleet admiral of the United States Navy. He played a major role in the naval history of World War II as Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet and Commander in Chief, Pacific Ocean Areas, commanding Allied air, land, and sea forces during World War II.

1280px-Chester_Nimitz_at_National_Portrait_Gallery_IMG_4591.JPG
Nimitz as he appears at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C.

Nimitz was the leading US Navy authority on submarines. Qualified in submarines during his early years, he later oversaw the conversion of these vessels' propulsion from gasoline to diesel, and then later was key in acquiring approval to build the world's first nuclear-powered submarine, USS Nautilus, whose propulsion system later completely superseded diesel-powered submarines in the US. He also, beginning in 1917, was the Navy's leading developer of underway replenishment techniques, the tool which during the Pacific war would allow the US fleet to operate away from port almost indefinitely. The chief of the Navy's Bureau of Navigation in 1939, Nimitz served as Chief of Naval Operations from 1945 until 1947. He was the United States' last surviving officer who served in the rank of fleet admiral.

Chester_W_Nimitz_by_Buffham,_c1905.png
Midshipman 1/C Nimitz, circa 1905

1.JPG 2.JPG 3.JPG

PROMOTIONS
Graduated from the Naval Academy - Class of 1905
Ensign - 07 Jan. 1907
Lieutenant (junior grade) - 31 Jan. 1910
Lieutenant - 31 Jan. 1910
Lieutenant Commander - 29 Aug. 1916
Commander - 8 March 1918
Captain - 02 June 1927
Rear Admiral - 23 June 1938
Vice Admiral - Not held - promoted directly to Admiral
Admiral - 31 Dec. 1941
Fleet Admiral - 19 Dec. 1944​
DECORATIONS and AWARDS

Distinguished Service Medal with two gold stars
Army Distinguished Service Medal
Silver Lifesaving Medal
Victory Medal with Escort Clasp
American Defense Service Medal
Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal
World War II Victory Medal
National Defense Service Medal​

Death
In late 1965, Nimitz suffered a stroke, complicated by pneumonia. In January 1966, he left the U.S. Naval Hospital (Oak Knoll) in Oakland to return home to his naval quarters. He died at home at age 80 on the evening of February 20 at Quarters One on Yerba Buena Island in San Francisco Bay. His funeral on February 24 was at the chapel of adjacent Naval Station Treasure Island and Nimitz was buried with full military honors at Golden Gate National Cemetery in San Bruno. He lies alongside his wife and his long-term friends Admiral Raymond A. Spruance, Admiral Richmond K. Turner, and Admiral Charles A. Lockwood and their wives, an arrangement made by all of them while living



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chester_W._Nimitz
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
Other Events on 20 February


1804 - HMS Active (38), Cptn. Richard Hussey Moubray, engaged 16 gunboats and took a transport.

HMS Active was a Royal Navy fifth-rate frigate launched on 14 December 1799 at Chatham Dockyard. Sir John Henslow designed her as an improvement on the Artois-class frigates. She served during the French Revolutionary Wars and the Napoleonic Wars, capturing numerous enemy vessels. Her crews participated in one campaign and three actions that would later qualify them for the Naval General Service Medal. She returned to service after the wars and finally was broken up in 1860.

1.JPG 2.JPG

j4068.jpg
Scale: 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, sheer lines, and longitudinal half-breadth proposed (and approved) for Active (1799), a 38-gun Fifth Rate, Frigate. Signed by John Henslow [Surveyor of the Navy, 1784-1806] and William Rule [Surveyor of the Navy, 1793-1813].

pu5619.jpg
The Active chasing a Turkish Frigate (Print) (PAD5619)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Active_(1799)
https://collections.rmg.co.uk/colle...el-289168;browseBy=vessel;vesselFacetLetter=A
https://threedecks.org/index.php?display_type=show_ship&id=2881


1811 - Sir Joseph Yorke's squadron arrived in the Tagus, with a reinforcement of 6,500 men for Lord Wellington.

Admiral Sir Joseph Sydney Yorke KCB (6 June 1768 – 5 May 1831) was an officer of the Royal Navy. As a junior officer he saw action at the Battle of the Saintes in April 1782 during the American Revolutionary War. He commanded HMS Stag at the defeat of the Dutch fleet in August 1795 during the French Revolutionary Wars and went on to be First Naval Lord during the closing stages of the Napoleonic Wars.

800px-Joseph_Sydney_Yorke.jpg

Joseph Yorke was promoted to Rear-Admiral of the Blue on 31 July 1810 and hoisted his flag in the 74-gun HMS Vengeance in January 1811.[1] He sailed to the Tagus carrying reinforcements for Arthur Wellesley's army, fighting in the Peninsular War.[1] After carrying this out he escorted a fleet returning to Britain from the East Indies.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Sydney_Yorke
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peninsular_War


1942 - japanese troups are landing in dutch Timor and portuguese Timor - the beginning of the Battle of Timor:

The Battle of Timor occurred in Portuguese Timor and Dutch Timor during the Second World War. Japanese forces invaded the island on 20 February 1942 and were resisted by a small, under-equipped force of Allied military personnel—known as Sparrow Force—predominantly from Australia, United Kingdom, and the Netherlands East Indies. Following a brief but stout resistance, the Japanese succeeded in forcing the surrender of the bulk of the Allied force after three days of fighting, although several hundred Australian commandos continued to wage an unconventional raiding campaign. They were resupplied by aircraft and vessels, based mostly in Darwin, Australia, about 650 km (400 mi) to the southeast, across the Timor Sea. During the subsequent fighting the Japanese suffered heavy casualties, but they were eventually able to contain the Australians.

The campaign lasted until 10 February 1943, when the final remaining Australians were evacuated, making them the last Allied land forces to leave South East Asia following the Japanese offensives of 1941–42. As a result, an entire Japanese division was tied up on Timor for more than six months, preventing its deployment elsewhere. Although Portugal was not a combatant, many East Timorese civilians and Portuguese European colonists fought with the Allies, or provided them with food, shelter and other assistance. Some Timorese continued a resistance campaign following the Australian withdrawal. For this, they paid a heavy price and tens of thousands of Timorese civilians died as a result of the Japanese occupation, which lasted until the end of the war in 1945.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Timor
https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schlacht_um_Timor


1945 - USS Pargo (SS 264) sinks Japanese destroyer Kokaze off Cape Varella, French Indochina and survives counter-attack by destroyer Kamikaze, which had been steaming in company with Nokaze during the attack.

USS Pargo (SS-264), a Gato-class submarine, was the first ship of the United States Navy to be named for the pargo, a fish of the genus Lutjanus found in the West Indies.

USS_Pargo;0826401.jpg

The first Pargo (SS-264) was laid down 21 May 1942 by Electric Boat Co., Groton, CT; launched 24 January 1943; sponsored by Miss Belle Baruch; and commissioned 26 April 1943, Lt. Comdr. Ian C. Eddy in command.

Nokaze (野風 "Field Wind") was the lead ship of the Nokaze sub-class, an improvement to the Minekaze-class 1st class destroyers built for the Imperial Japanese Navy following World War I. Advanced for their time, these ships served as first-line destroyers through the 1930s, but were considered obsolescent by the start of the Pacific War.

Japanese_destroyer_Nokaze.jpg

On 20 February 1945, Nokaze was torpedoed and sunk by the submarine USS Pargo north of Nha Trang, French Indochina in the South China Sea at position 12°48′N 109°38′ECoordinates:
17px-WMA_button2b.png
12°48′N 109°38′E. The ship exploded and sank, with 209 killed. Kamikaze rescued 21 survivors, including its captain, Lieutenant Commander Tarō Ebihara. Nokaze was the last of 39 Japanese destroyers to fall victim to United States Navy submarines during the war.


The Japanese destroyer Kamikaze (神風 "Divine Wind") was the lead ship of nine Kamikaze-class destroyers built for the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) during the 1920s. At the beginning of the Pacific War in December 1941, the ship was assigned to the Ōminato Guard District. She remained in northern Japanese waters until mid-1942 when she participated in the Aleutian Islands Campaign. Kamikaze continued to patrol northern Japanese waters until early 1945 when she was transferred to the Singapore area.

Kamikaze_II.jpg

On 20 February, she rescued the survivors of the torpedoed destroyer Nokaze, continuing on to Singapore by 22 February.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Pargo_(SS-264)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_destroyer_Nokaze
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_destroyer_Kamikaze_(1922)


1966 - The Norwegian oil tanker Anne Mildred Brovig collided with the British coaster MV Pentland off of the coast of West Germany near Heligoland.

Both ships caught fire and the Brovig sank, spilling 16,000 tons of its cargo of Iranian crude oil, the last major spill to threaten Germany. Between the use of dispersants and favorable weather, the oil slick disappeared without damaging the German coast.

anne_mildred_brovig.jpg

Anne_Mildred_Brovig,_Kopie.jpg

https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne_Mildred_Brøvig
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1654 – Launch of the Winsby, later renamed HMS Happy Return, a 44-gun fourth-rate frigate of the English Royal Navy,


The Winsby was a 44-gun fourth-rate frigate of the English Royal Navy, originally built for the navy of the Commonwealth of England at Yarmouth, and launched in February 1654. the Winsby was named for the Parliamentarian victory at the Battle of Winceby.

1.JPG 2.JPG

After the restoration of the monarchy in 1660, she was renamed HMS Happy Return, as her name was incompatible with the restored Stuart monarchy. By 1677 her armament had been increased to 54 guns. Happy Return was captured by the French in 1691 and commissioned as French Third Rate ship of the line 'Heureux Retour' . In April 1708 recaptured by HMS Burford (70), but not re-added to English Navy

pz7576.jpg
Inscription in Dutch above image.; Signed by artist. A portrait, viewed from slightly before the starboard beam, of the English fourth-rate ship ‘Happy Return’, which was built in 1654 as the ‘Winsby’, 54 guns, renamed in 1660, and captured by the French in 1691. It is freely and accurately drawn, without the assistance of an offset, showing wreathed ports on the upper deck and quarterdeck and a few figures slightly indicated. It is inscribed top left ‘d hapritorn vertumert’ and ‘vertumert 1678’ (‘the ‘Happy Return’ rebuilt’ and ‘rebuilt 1678’), and signed on left in graphite and on right in ink ‘W. V. V. J.’.


Service History in british Navy according ThreeDecks

Date Event
2.1654 Completed at Great Yarmouth at a cost of £3932.10.0d
20.4.1657 Battle of Santa Cruz
1659 Operations in the Sound
1660 Renamed Happy Return
6.1660 In the North Sea
3.6.1665 Battle of Lowestoft
3.8.1665 Battle of Vågen
1666 Refitted as a 52 gunner
1.6.1666 Four Days Battle
25.7.1666 St James Day Battle
28.5.1673 First Battle of Schooneveld
4.6.1673 Second Battle of Schooneveld
11.8.1673 Battle of Texel
1677 Refitted as a 54 gunner
1679 In the Mediterranean
1681 Expedition to Tangier
1685 In Home water and then the Mediterranean
1685 Refitted as a 48 gunner
1690 In the Mediterranean
22.4.1690 Took the Privateer Ship La Vierge de Grace (32)
2.1691 Convoy service off Barfleur
4.11.1691 Captured by French privateers off Dunkirk

3.JPG

Service History in french Navy

Date Event
1692 repairs at Brest
1695 Refitted as a 50 gun Fourth Rate Ship of the Line
4.1708 Taken / Recaptured by HMS Burford (70) but not re-added to English Navy

4.JPG

px6242.jpg
Portrait of the ‘Happy Return’, viewed from close under the port quarter, the side only lightly sketched. Two rows of stern windows with a small royal arms between them. Very freely but accurately drawn to show the decoration of the stern. This drawing is part of a series depicting the journey of William of Orange and Princess Mary to Holland, November [OS]/December 1677. Van de Velde made a series of at least 56 drawings of the various stages of the journey. Most of them are at the Boymans-van Beuningen Museum, Rotterdam. In the Boymans-van Beuningen Museum, Rotterdam, there are drawings of the ‘Happy Return’, viewed from before the port beam and from abaft the starboard beam. They probably show the ship before her rebuilding.

pw6974.jpg
The quarter-gallery of the Happy Return (Drawing) (PAF6974) / Drawing The detail of the port quarter-gallery and a square port and two wreathed ports just before it. Bottom left, a port broadside view of the ship in the middle-distance, only her lowermasts stepped. It is inscribed ‘heeperiton’. This is an unsigned pencil drawing by the Younger.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Happy_Return_(1654)
https://threedecks.org/index.php?display_type=show_ship&id=460
https://threedecks.org/index.php?display_type=show_ship&id=2084
https://collections.rmg.co.uk/colle...el-317566;browseBy=vessel;vesselFacetLetter=H
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1692 - British squadron of 7 ships, under Commodore Ralph Wrenn, engaged a French squadron of 18 ships, under M. de Blenac, in the West Indies.


On 18 April 1672 Ralph Wrenn (died 26 March 1692) was appointed commander of the Hopewell fireship, and in the following year of the Rose dogger. After the peace with the Dutch Republic he was lieutenant of the Reserve; in 1677 he had command of the fireship Young Spragge; in 1679 he was lieutenant of the Kingfisher in the Mediterranean with Morgan Kempthorne, and was so still in May 1681, when she fought a brilliant action with seven Algerine pirates.

1.JPG

After Kempthorne's death Wrenn took the command and beat off the enemy. His gallantry was rewarded by a promotion to the command of the Nonsuch on 9 August 1681. In May 1682 he was moved into the Centurion, to which, still in the Mediterranean, he was reappointed in May 1685. In 1687–88 he commanded the Mary Rose, and in September 1688 he was appointed to the Greenwich, one of the ships at the Nore with Lord Dartmouth during the critical October; from this appointment he was superseded after the revolution.

In 1690, however, he was appointed to the Norwich of forty-eight guns, and in October 1691 was ordered out to the Jamaica Station.

He sailed from Plymouth on 26 December, and after a most favourable passage arrived at Barbados on 16 January 1691–92, when his force consisted of the Mary and, besides the Norwich, five 4th-rates, ships of from forty to fifty guns. He had orders to send one of these with the trade to Jamaica; but, receiving intelligence that the French were in greater force than had been supposed, he detached two on this duty. Then, on a report that a squadron of nine French ships was cruising off Barbados, he strengthened his force with two hired merchant ships, and put to sea on 30 January. Not meeting with the enemy in a cruise of five days, he returned to Barbados, and, apprehending that the whole French fleet had gone to Jamaica, he sailed again on 17 February. On the 21st off Desirade he sighted the French fleet of more than three times his strength—eighteen ships of from forty to sixty guns, with some six or seven fireships and tenders. In face of such odds, Wrenn drew back, but was the next morning attacked by their full force. After a sharp action of four hours' duration, Wrenn found himself able to draw off and retire unpursued—‘the bravest action performed in the West Indies during the war’. He returned to Barbados, where a sickness carried off a great many of the men, and, among others, Wrenn himself.


Charles de Courbon, comte de Blénac (1622 – 10 June 1696) was governor general of the French Antilles three times in the 17th century. He was an experienced soldier and fought for the king during the Fronde before becoming a naval captain. Towards the end of the Franco-Dutch War he led the land forces that took Tobago from the Dutch before taking command of the French Antilles. During the Nine Years' War he was active in the struggle with the English and Dutch in the Windward Islands. He captured Sint Eustatius and Saint Kitts, and defended Martinique against a large English expedition in 1693.

Governor general of the Antilles (1692–96)

Tournières_-_Louis_Phélypeaux,_comte_de_Pontchartrain,_chancelier_de_France_(1643-1727).jpg
Louis Phélypeaux, comte de Pontchartrain, chancelier de France

Louis XIV sent Jean-Baptiste du Casse to help defend the Antilles late in 1691. The king reappointed Blénac as governor general of the Windward Islands.[3] The comte de Pontchartrain gave Blénac a fleet of ten warships, one frigate and two fire ships. He was ordered to attack Barbados and go on to destroy the property of the English colonists in the Leeward Islands. Blénac arrived back in Martinique on 4 February 1692.

On 21st February 1692 a convoy of merchant ships escorted by Commodore Ralph Wrenn was passing between Guadeloupe and Désirade. The English found Blénac ahead of them in his flagship, the 62-gun Vermandois, supported by the Vaillant, Léger, François, Droite, Basque, Chasseur, Solide, Bouffone, Jersey, Neptune and five smaller vessels. The English were completely outnumbered, and set a course to the leeward in the hope of protecting the convoy. Blénac engaged the next day, but Wrenn outmanoeuvred him and managed to escape to the south. Wrenn reached Barbados three days later without any losses.

After this the English and French found themselves in a stalemate, where neither could risk invading an enemy island while the other's fleet was intact. The crews of both squadrons suffered from yellow fever, and Wrenn died of the disease. Blénac only had enough sailors to man three warships by the start of July. News came that the English were organizing a major expedition under Sir Francis Wheler to attach the French Antilles. Blénac was told he could not expect help from France. Blénac had been accompanied to Martinique by an engineer, Sieur de Caylus, and during 1692 he directed improvements to the island's defenses while Blénac organized the militia of almost 1,400 men. Pontchartrain ordered that the five vessels of the French navy in the Antilles leave by 1 March 1693.

In 1693 Blénac and the governor of Martinique, Nicolas de Gabaret, repulsed the English when they attempted invasion with a force of 4,000 men. The English expedition under Admiral Wheler had 15 warships 3 fire ships, 28 transports and almost 2,000 soldiers, to which Barbados added another 1,000 men. This force invaded in March 1693, and took control of a large area with little opposition. English reinforcements under Captain General Christopher Codrington arrived within two weeks, but the combined force did not engage in serious fighting. The English took 3,000 black slaves, valued at £60,000. An ineffective attack was made on Saint Pierre, then the force departed. Various explanations have been given for the failure to make a serious effort to capture the island. The reason seems to be a combination of the climate, raw troops including unenthusiastic Irish and superior French forces. The French under Ducasse retaliated, but limited their activity to plundering.

Blénac died near Fort Royal, Martinique on the night of 8-9 June 1696 from lingering dysentery. He was succeeded by the Thomas-Claude Renart de Fuchsamberg, marquis d'Amblimont.



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ralph_Wrenn
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_de_Courbon_de_Blénac
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1693 – Launch of french Terrible, a First Rank ship of the line of the French Royal Navy.


The Terrible was a First Rank ship of the line of the French Royal Navy.

This ship was ordered to be built at Brest Dockyard on 19 July 1692, to bear the name Terrible, to replace the previous ship bearing that name destroyed at La Hogue in June 1692. The designer and builder was Blaise Pangalo. Pangalo's ship was laid down in August 1692, launched on 21 February 1693 and completed in May 1693.

1.JPG 2.JPG

She was initially armed with 100 guns, comprising twenty-eight 36-pounders on the lower deck, twenty-eight 18-pounders on the middle deck, twenty-eight 8-pounders on the upper deck, ten 6-pounders on the quarterdeck and six 6-pounders on the forecastle. In 1706 two extra 18-pounders were added on the middle deck, the 8-pounders on the upper deck were replaced by 12-pounders, and two more 6-pounders were added on the quarterdeck, giving her 104 guns.

The new ship took part in the Battle of Lagos on 28 June 1693, where she was the flagship of Lieutenant-Général Louis François de Rousselet de Bourbon, Marquis de Châteaurenault, and at the Battle of Vélez-Málaga on 24 August 1704, where she was the flagship of Lieutenant-Général Ferdinand, Comte de Relingue. She was scuttled in Toulon on Louis's orders in July 1707 to avoid being set alight by the bombardment by the English fleet. She was later put back afloat, but in August 1714 she was condemned, and was sold to be taken to pieces during 1714.



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_ship_Terrible_(1693)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_ships_of_the_line_of_France
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1759 - HMS Vestal (32), Cptn. Samuel Hood, took French frigate Bellona (1758 - 32) in the Channel

HMS Vestal
was one of the four 32-gun Southampton-class fifth-rate frigates of the Royal Navy. She was launched in 1757 and was broken up in 1775.

1.JPG 2.JPG

b6883.jpg
'George III in HMS Southampton reviewing the fleet off Plymouth, 18 August 1789'. The Carnatic is shown just right of the centre of the picture, heading the line of ships being reviewed.

Service history
During the Seven Years' War, on 21 February 1759, Vestal, under the command of Captain Samuel Hood, was part of a squadron under the command of Rear-Admiral Charles Holmes bound for North America. Vestal was in advance of the squadron when she sighted a sail ahead, and set off in pursuit. Vestal came up to the enemy ship, the 32-gun Bellone, at 2 p.m. After a fierce engagement lasting four hours, Bellone surrendered, having forty men killed, and being totally dismasted. Vestal had only her lower masts standing, and had five killed and twenty wounded. She returned to Spithead with her prize, which was bought into the Navy and renamed Repulse. The prize money for the capture of the Bellone was paid out at Portsmouth from May 1760.

In June 1759 Vestal was part of Rear-Admiral George Brydges Rodney's squadron, which bombarded Le Havre destroying flat-bottomed boats and supplies which had been collected there for a planned invasion of England.

On 16 March 1762 prize money was paid out at Leghorn to Vestal for the capture of the Marquis de Pille on 12 December 1760, the St. Antoine de L'Aigle on 19 January, the Marie Euphrosine on 17 April, and the St. Antoine de Padua on 17 June 1761, all in the Mediterranean.

j5951.jpg

j5907.jpg
Lines & Profile (ZAZ3069)

The Southampton-class frigates were 32-gun sailing frigates of the fifth rate produced for the Royal Navy. They were designed in 1756 by Sir Thomas Slade, and were the first 'true' fifth-rate frigates produced to the new single-deck concept (that is, without any gunports on the lower deck). They were, however, designed with sweep ports (for rowing) along the lower deck.

Unlike the contemporary sixth-rate frigates of 28 guns, which were derived from French designs by Slade, the Southampton class were fully British-designed. Unlike the French models, these ships had considerably more height on the lower deck, and were originally intended to work their cables here.

A total of four ships were built in oak during the Seven Years’ War, all ordered from private shipyards. The initial design was approved on 12 March 1756, and provided for a ship of 648 37/94 tons burthen, and the contract with Robert Inwood to build the prototype reflected this. On 25 May the design was modified by Slade to lengthen the ship on the lower deck by 3 inches, and along the keel by 10½ inches, thus raising the tonnage to 652 51/94 burthen; on the same date, the name Southampton was approved for the prototype, and two further ships were ordered to be built to this design, with a fourth vessel being ordered one week later.

Ships in class
  • Southampton
    • Ordered: 12 March 1756
    • Built by: Robert Inwood, Rotherhithe.
    • Keel laid: April 1756
    • Launched: 5 May 1757
    • Completed: 19 June 1757 at Deptford Dockyard.
    • Fate: Wrecked in the Bahamas on 27 November 1812.
  • Minerva
    • Ordered: 25 May 1756
    • Built by: John Quallet, Rotherhithe.
    • Keel laid: 1 June 1756
    • Launched: 17 January 1759
    • Completed: 3 March 1759 at Deptford Dockyard.
    • Fate: Captured by the French on 22 August 1778. Retaken on 4 January 1781 and renamed Recovery 20 April 1781. Sold at Deptford Dockyard 30 December 1784.
  • Vestal
    • Ordered: 25 May 1756
    • Built by: John Barnard & John Turner, Harwich.
    • Keel laid: June 1756
    • Launched: 17 June 1757
    • Completed: 17 August 1757 at the builder's shipyard.
    • Fate: Taken to pieces at Deptford Dockyard in June 1775.
  • Diana
    • Ordered: 1 June 1756
    • Built by: Robert Batson, Limehouse.
    • Keel laid: June 1756
    • Launched: 30 August 1757
    • Completed: 12 September 1757 at Deptford Dockyard.
    • Fate: Sold at Deptford Dockyard on 16 May 1793.
j5906.jpg
Deck (ZAZ3031)

j0560.jpg
Scale: 1:24. Plan showing the elevation and plan for the steering apparatus as fitted to Southampton (1757), a 32-gun Fifth Rate Frigate; to an invention of Captain Lawson (Seniority, 21 October 1810, no ship assigned [Steel's Navy List, March 1811]). Signed Nicholas Diddams [Master Shipwright, Portsmouth Dockyard, March 1803 - January 1823].


3.JPG



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Vestal_(1757)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Southampton_(1757)
https://threedecks.org/index.php?display_type=show_ship&id=6158
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1793 - HMS Alligator (1787 - 28), Cptn. William Affleck, captures the French privateer Prend Tout in the North Sea


HMS Alligator was a 28-gun Enterprise-class sixth rate frigate of the Royal Navy. She was originally ordered during the American War of Independence but was completed too late to see service during the conflict. Instead she had an active career during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars.

1.JPG 2.JPG

Commissioned during the last few years of peace prior to the outbreak of war with France, Alligator served in British waters, making trips as far afield as the Mediterranean and the North American coast. During the period of conflict that began in 1793, Alligator spent a considerable amount of time in the West Indies under a number of commanders, and was effective in anti-privateer operations. Despite this she was laid up for a period starting in 1795, and was reduced to a 16-gun troopship in 1800. Further service followed in the West Indies, supporting the fleet and army movements around the islands, and taking part in the capture of several French frigates. She was again laid up, and as the end of hostilities approached, was deemed surplus and was sold in 1814.

j6325.jpg
Scale 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, sheer lines and longitudinal half breadth for Pomona (1778), then Pegasus (1779), then Mercury (1779), and wih pencil alterations for Hussar (1784), Rose (1783), Dido (1784), Thisbe (1783), Alligator (1787), Circe (1783), Lapwing (1785), all 28-gun, Sixth Rate Frigates. Signed by John Williams [Surveyor of the Navy, 171765-1784]. The top ship is not 'Laurel' as listed in the annotation on the right, as this plan predates her ordering by over one year.

Construction and commissioning
Alligator was one of the third batch of Enterprise-class ships to be ordered by the Admiralty, with the contract to build her being awarded to Philemon Jacobs, of Sandgate on 7 May 1782. She was laid down there in December 1782 and launched on 18 April 1787. With there being no immediate need for a large number of ships in the navy after the end of the war with America, Alligator was gradually completed between 20 April 1787 and 18 July 1790, at first at Deptford Dockyard and then at the civilian yards of Randall & Co, at Rotherhithe. She cost a total of £2,771 with £4,330 spent on fitting costs and expenses incurred at Deptford.[2]She commissioned under her first commander, Captain Isaac Coffin in June 1790.

j6321.jpg
Scale 1:48. Plan showing the inboard profile plan for the Enterprize Class 1770: Enterprize (1774), Siren (1773), Fox (1773), Surprize (1774), Acteon (1775), Medea (1778), Serpine (1777), Andromeda (1777), Aurora (1777), Sibyl (1779), Brilliant (1779), Pomona (1778), Crescent (1779), Nemesis (1780), Resource (1778), Mercury (1779), Cyclops (1779), Vestal (1779), Laurel (1779), Pegasus (1779), and with modifications, written in green ink, for Hussar (1784), Rose (1783), Dido (1784), Thisbe (1783), Alligator (1787), Circe (1783), Lapwing (1785), all 28-gun, Sixth Rate Frigates building at various Royal and private yards. The reverse of the plan shows a section through the deck for the after Bitts as they appear face on, from upper deck to keel.

Interwar years
Coffin commissioned Alligator during the period of tensions known as the Spanish Armament and commanded her over the three years leading up to the outbreak of war with Revolutionary France. At one point, while Alligator was anchored at the Nore, one of her crew fell overboard. Coffin jumped into the water to rescue him, and succeeded in recovering the man before he drowned, but in doing so experienced a serious rupture while carrying out the rescue, that would dog him in later life. From the Nore Coffin moved to Spithead, and then to Ceuta, where Alligator briefly carried the flag of Admiral Philip Cosby. Superseded by the arrival of HMS Fame, Alligator was sent to cruise off Western Ireland. In 1792 Coffin sailed to Canada and returned carrying Lord Dorchester. Alligator then underwent a refit at Deptford for £2,895 and recommissioned in December 1792.

French Revolutionary Wars
From February 1793 her commander was Captain William Afleck, who served briefly in the North Sea, achieving success against French privateers in the region. On 12 February 1793 he captured the Sans Peur, followed by the Prend Tout on 21 February. Afleck left Britain bound for the Leeward Islands on 18 March 1793.

He stopped at Halifax, where the schooner Diligent joined him. From there they sailed, with three transports carrying an artillery detachment and 310 troops primarily from the 4th Regiment of Foot, all under the command of Brigadier General James Ogilvie, to St Pierre and Miquelon on 7 May. They captured Saint Pierre on 14 May without firing a shot. They also captured 18 small vessels carrying fish, and two American schooners with provisions and naval stores.[8] Trepassey joined them a day later and then sailed to Miquelon to complete the conquest. Prize money for the capture of the islands was paid in October 1796.

On 11 December 1793, Alligator captured the French ship Triomphant in St Marks Bay, in the island of Hispaniola. Next, Alligator captured the French 14-gun Liberté near Jamaicaon 28 March 1794. On 14 June, Alligator was among the vessels that participated in the capture of Port-au-Prince. In October that year command passed to Captain Thomas Surridge. Captain Thomas Afleck succeeded Surridgein January 1795, and paid Alligator off the following month.

Alligator was laid up at Portsmouth for five years, until being refitted there as a 16-gun troopship between February and March 1800. She was recommissioned in February under Captain George Bowen, under whom she took part in operations off Egypt during the French campaign there. While supporting the landing of troops in Abu Qir Bay had one man killed and three wounded. On 17 July she recaptured the Anchor. Because Alligator served in the navy's Egyptian campaign between 8 March 1801 and 2 September, her officers and crew qualified for the clasp "Egypt" to the Naval General Service Medal that the Admiralty authorised in 1850 to all surviving claimants.

Captain Philip Beaver took over command in May 1802. He remained Alligator's captain until she was recommissioned in May the following year under Commander Richardson.

In April 1803, however, Alligator was sailing from Gibraltar to Britain in company with Dragon and the store ship Prevoyante when they sighted two French ships of the line off Cape St. Vincent. The French ships veered off rather than engage the British vessels. Later that year Alligator went out to the Leeward Islands and on 27 September was one of a number of ships that captured the 18-gun Dutch ship Hippomenes at Demerara.

Napoleonic Wars
Commander Robert Henderson was in command between 1804 and 1805, during which time Alligator was one of several ships to chase down and capture the 32-gun Proserpine at Surinam on 6 May 1804.

Alligator formed part of Commodore Samuel Hood's squadron at the capture of Surinam River in 1804. The squadron consisted of Hood's flagship Centaur, Pandour, Serapis, Unique, Hippomenes, Drake, and transports carrying 2000 troops under Brigadier-General Sir Charles Green. Both British and Dutch casualties were light.

In November, Alligator recaptured from a French privateer the Danish brig Hoff, which was carrying a cargo of slaves. On 24 June 1805, Alligator captured the Spanish brig Santo Chritle, which was carrying brandy from Spain to Havanna.

Henderson was succeeded by Commander Augustus Collier in 1806, who returned her to the Leeward Islands. There in March 1806 she came under the command of Captain Hugh Pigot.

Fate
Captain Robert Bell Campbell replaced Pigot from 1807. Campbell returned Alligator to Britain, where she was laid up at Plymouth in April 1807. She was offered for sale there on 21 July 1814 as the Napoleonic Wars drew to a close. She was sold that day for the sum of £1,760.


The Enterprise-class frigates were the final class of 28-gun sailing frigates of the sixth-rate to be produced for the Royal Navy. These twenty-seven vessels were designed in 1770 by John Williams. A first batch of five ships were ordered as part of the programme sparked by the Falklands Islands emergency. Two ships were built by contract in private shipyards, while three others were constructed in the Royal Dockyards using foreign oak.

A second batch of fifteen ships were ordered in 1776 to 1778 to meet the exigencies of the North American situation, and a final group of seven ships followed in 1782 to 1783 with only some minor modifications to include side gangways running flush with the quarter deck and forecastle, and with solid bulkheads along the quarterdeck.

Enterprize class 28-gun sixth rates 1773-87; 27 ships, designed by John Williams.
  • HMS Siren 1773 - wrecked on the coast of Connecticut 1777.
  • HMS Fox 1773 - taken by USS Hancock 1777, retaken by HMS Flora a month later, but then taken by the French Junon off Brest in 1778.
  • HMS Enterprize 1774 - hulked as receiving ship at the Tower of London 1791, broken up 1807.
  • HMS Surprise 1774 - sold 1783.
  • HMS Actaeon 1775 - grounded at Charleston and burnt to avoid capture on 28 June 1776.
  • HMS Proserpine 1777 - wrecked off Heligoland in 1799.
  • HMS Andromeda 1777 - capsized in the Great West Indian Hurricane of 1780.
  • HMS Aurora 1777 - sold 1814.
  • HMS Medea 1778 - hulked as a hospital ship at Portsmouth in 1801 and sold in 1805.
  • HMS Pomona 1778 - renamed Amphitrite in 1795, broken up 1811.
  • HMS Resource 1778 - converted to troopship in 1799, hulked as receiving ship at the Tower of London and renamed Enterprize in 1803, broken up in 1816.
  • HMS Sibyl 1779 - renamed Garland in 1795, lost off Madagascar on 26 July 1798.
  • HMS Brilliant 1779 - broken up 1811.
  • HMS Crescent 1779 - captured by the French frigates Gloire (1778) and Friponne (1780) on 20 June 1781.
  • HMS Mercury 1779 - used as floating battery since 1803, converted to troopship in 1810, broken up in 1814.
  • HMS Pegasus 1779 - converted to troopship in 1800, hulked as receiving ship in 1814, sold 1816.
  • HMS Cyclops 1779 - converted to troopship in 1800, hulked as receiving ship at Portsmouth in 1807, sold 1814.
  • HMS Vestal 1779 - converted to troopship in 1800, on lease to Trinity House from 1803 to 1810, hulked as prison ship at Barbados in 1814, sold 1816.
  • HMS Laurel 1779 - driven ashore and disintegrated during the Great West Indian Hurricane of 1780.
  • HMS Nemesis 1780 - taken by the French in 1795, retaken in 1796, converted to troopship in 1812, sold 1814.
  • HMS Thisbe 1783 - converted to troopship in 1800, sold 1815.
  • HMS Rose 1783 - wrecked on Rocky Point, Jamaica, on 28 June 1794.
  • HMS Hussar 1784 - wrecked near Île Bas on Christmas Eve 1796.
  • HMS Dido 1784 - converted to troopship in 1800, hulked as Army prison ship at Portsmouth in 1804, sold 1817.
  • HMS Circe 1785 - wrecked near Yarmouth on 6 November 1803.
  • HMS Lapwing 1785 - hulked as salvage ship at Cork in 1810, residential ship at Pembroke from 1813, broken up in 1828.
  • HMS Alligator 1787 - hulked as salvage ship at Cork in 1810, sold in 1814.

3.JPG


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Alligator_(1787)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enterprise-class_frigate
https://threedecks.org/index.php?display_type=show_ship&id=12136
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1810 – Launch of HMS Vigo, a 74-gun third rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy


HMS Vigo was a 74-gun third rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, launched on 21 February 1810 at Rochester.

She became a receiving ship in 1827, and was broken up in 1865.

1.JPG 2.JPG


The Vengeur-class ships of the line were a class of forty 74-gun third rates, designed for the Royal Navy as a joint effort between the Surveyors of the Navy at the time. The Vengeur Class, sometimes referred to as the Surveyors' class of third rates, amongst other names, was the most numerous class of ships of the line ever built for the Royal Navy - forty ships being completed to this design. Due to some dubious practices, primarily in the commercial dockyards used for construction, this class of ships earned itself the nickname of 'Forty Thieves.'

HMS_asia_(1811).jpg

Between 1826 and 1832, ten of these ships were cut down by one deck (raséed) to produce 50-gun "frigates". These were the Barham, Dublin, Alfred, Cornwall, America, Conquestador, Rodney (renamed Greenwich), Vindictive, Eagle and Gloucester. Planned similar conversions of the Clarence (renamed Centurion) and Cressy around this time were cancelled, but the Warspitewas additionally converted along the same lines in 1837-1840.

Around 1845 four of these ships were converted into 'blockships', the then-current term for floating batteries, equipped with a steam/screw propulsion system and re-armed with 60 guns. In this guise some of them saw action during the Crimean War. The four were the Blenheim, Ajax, Hogue and Edinburgh. About ten years later, a further batch of five ships was similarly converted - this included the Russell, Cornwallis and Pembroke of this class (as well as the Hawke and Hastings of other designs).

j3307.jpg
Scale: 1:48. Contemporary copy of a plan showing the body plan, sheer lines, and longitudinal half-breadth for 'Conquestadore' (1810), 'Armada' (1810), 'Vigo' (1810), 'Cressey' (1810), 'La Hogue' (1811), 'Vindictive' (1813), 'Poictiers' (1809), 'Vengeur' (1810), 'Edinburgh' (1811), 'Dublin' (1812), 'Duncan' (1811), 'Indus' (1812), 'Rodney' (1809), 'Cornwall' (1812), 'Redoutable' (1815), 'Anson' (1812), 'Agincourt' (1817), 'Ajax' (1809), 'America' (1810), 'Barham' (1811), 'Benbow' (1813), 'Berwick' (1809), 'Blenheim' (1813), 'Clarence' (1812), 'Defence' (1815), 'Devonshire' (1812), 'Egmont' (1810), 'Hercules' (1815), 'Medway' (1812), 'Pembroke' (1812), 'Pitt' (1816), 'Russell' (1822), 'Scarborough' (1812), 'Stirling Castle' (1811), 'Wellington' (1816), 'Mulgrave' (1812), 'Gloucester' (1812), all 74-gun Third Rate, two-deckers. The plan includes alterations for a rounded bow and circular stern.

Armada or Vengeur class. The most numerous class of British capital ships ever built, with forty vessels being completed to this design (they were popularly known as the "Forty Thieves").
  • Armada 74 (1810) – sold 1863
  • Cressy 74 (1810) – 1827 planned to be converted to 50-gun frigate but instead broken up 1832
  • Vigo 74 (1810) – hulked at receiving ship Plymouth, broken up 1865
  • Vengeur 74 (1810) – hulked as receiving ship 1824, broken up 1843
  • Ajax 74 (1809) – converted to 60-gun screw blockship, 1847, broken up 1864
  • Conquestador 74 (1810) – cut down to 50 gun frigate 1831, hulked War Office powder depot at Purfleet 1856, powder depot Plymouth 1863, sold 1897
  • Poictiers 74 (1809) – broken up 1857
  • Berwick 74 (1809) – broken up 1821
  • Egmont 74 (1810) – hulked as storeship Rio de Janeiro 1863, sold 1875
  • Clarence 74 (1812) – renamed Centurion 1826 and planned to be converted to 50-gun frigate but instead broken up 1828
  • Edinburgh 74 (1811) – converted to 60-gun screw blockship 1852, sold 1866
  • America 74 (1810) – cut down to 50-gun frigate 1835, hulked 1864, broken up 1867
  • Scarborough 74 (1812) – sold 1836
  • Asia 74 (1811) – renamed Alfred, cut down to 50-gun frigate 1828, hulked as gunnery trials ship Portsmouth 1858, broken up 1865
  • Mulgrave 74 (1812) – hulked as a lazaretto Pembroke 1836, powder ship 1844, broken up 1854
  • Anson 74 (1812) – hulked as temporary lazaretto Portsmouth 1831, by 1843 to Chatham and then to Tasmania as a convict ship, broken up 1851
  • Gloucester 74 (1812) – cut down to 50-gun frigate 1835, hulked as receiving ship Chatham 1861, sold 1884
  • Rodney 74 (1809) – renamed Greenwich 1827 and cut down to 50-gun frigate, but conversion probably never completed, sold 1836
  • La Hogue 74 (1811) – converted to 60-gun screw blockship 1848, broken up 1865
  • Dublin 74 (1812) – cut down to 50-gun frigate 1836, laid up 1845, sold 1885
  • Barham 74 (1811) – cut down to 50-gun frigate 1836, broken up 1840
  • Benbow 74 (1813) – hulked as marine barracks Sheerness 1848, prison ship for Russians 1854, coal deport 1859, sold for breaking 1894
  • Stirling Castle 74 (1811) – hulked as convict ship Plymouth 1839, to Portsmouth 1844, broken up 1861
  • Vindictive 74 (1813) – cut down to 50-gun frigate 1833, hulked as depot ship Fernando Po 1862, sold 1871
  • Blenheim 74 (1813) – converted to 60-gun screw blockship 1847, hulked at Portsmouth, broken up 1865
  • Duncan 74 (1811) – hulked as lazaretto Portsmouth 1826, to Sheerness 1831, broken up 1863
  • Rippon 74 (1812) – broken up 1821
  • Medway 74 (1812) – hulked as convict ship Bermuda 1847, sold 1865
  • Cornwall 74 (1812) – cut down to 50-gun frigate 1830, hulked and lent to London School Ship Society as reformatory 1859, to the Tyne as Wellesley hulk 1868, broken up 1875
  • Pembroke 74 (1812) – converted to 60-gun screw blockship 1855, hulked as base ship Chatham 1873, renamed Forte 1890 as receiving hulk, then Pembroke again 1891, sold 1905
  • Indus 74 (1812) – renamed Bellona 1818, hulked as receiving ship Plymouth 1842, broken up 1868
  • Redoubtable 74 (1815) – broken up 1841
  • Devonshire 74 (1812) – hulked and lent to Greenwich Seamen's Hospital as temporary hospital ship 1849, to Sheerness as prison ship for Russians 1854, school ship in Queensborough Swale 1860, broken up 1869
  • Defence 74 (1815) – hulked as convict ship Woolwich 1848, burnt and broken up 1857
  • Hercules 74 (1815) – troopship 1838, emigrant ship 1852, hulked as army depot ship Hong Kong after 1853, sold 1865
  • Agincourt 74 (1817) – hulked as training ship at Plymouth after 1848, renamed Vigo 1865, cholera hospital ship 1866, receiving ship at Plymouth 1870, sold 1884, broken up 1885
  • Pitt 74 (1816) – hulked as coal deport and receiving ship at Plymouth 1853, to Portland 1860, later back to Portsmouth, broken up 1877
  • Wellington 74 (1816) – ex-Hero, hulked as receiving and depot ship Sheerness 1848, to Coastguard Sheerness 1857, to Liverpool Juvenile Reformatory Association Ltd as training ship and renamed Akbar, sold for breaking 1908
  • Russell 74 (1822) – converted to 60-gun screw blockship 1854–55, coastguard ship Sheerness 1858, broken up 1865
  • Akbar 74 (-) – keel laid 4 April 1807, cancelled 12 October 1809. Uncertain whether she was of this class


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Vigo_(1810)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vengeur-class_ship_of_the_line
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1814 – Launch of HMS Liverpool, a Royal Navy Endymion-class frigate, reclassified as a fourth rate.


HMS Liverpool was a Royal Navy Endymion-class frigate, reclassified as a fourth rate. She was built by Wigram, Wells and Green and launched at Woolwich on 21 February 1814. She was built of pitch-pine, which made for speedy construction at the expense of durability.

1.JPG 2.JPG

Her major service was on the East Indies Station from where in 1819 she led the successful punitive campaign against the Al Qasimi, a belligerent naval power based in Ras Al Khaimah which the British considered to be piratical. She was sold in 1822 but continued to operate in the Persian Gulf for an indefinite period thereafter.

j3863.jpg
Scale: 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, sheer lines, and longitudinal half-breadth for Liffey (1813), Forth (1813), Severn (1813), Liverpool (1814), and Glasgow (1814), all fir-built 40-gun Fifth Rate Frigates to be built at Blackwall by Wigram, Wells & Green. The plan records that the body was similar to that of Endymion (1797), a 40-gun Fourth Rate Frigate.

The Endymion class was a class of six Royal Navy 40-gun fifth-rate frigates, with the prototype launched in 1797 and five slightly amended versions built of fir launched from 1813 to 1814.

Design
In 1794, a frigate squadron under the command of Captain Sir John Borlase Warren captured the French 40-gun frigate Pomone. Surprisingly to her captors, the ship was armed with 26 × 24-pounder long guns, a main armament that was relatively uncommon for frigates in the 18th century. Furthermore, Pomone impressed the British with outstanding sailing qualities in every variation of the wind, and being capable of sailing more than 13 knots (24 km/h; 15 mph).

On 30 April 1795, the Admiralty ordered three frigates — with 36 guns, 38 guns and 40 guns — the first and third built to the lines of the captured French frigate and the second to a new design by the Surveyors (the ship designers of the Royal Navy). The 40-gun French design was copied from Pomone, and in November 1795 the keel was laid down at the Rotherhithe shipyard of John Randall & Company for the new ship, which on 14 November 1795 was named as HMS Endymion. She was launched on 29 March 1797 and towed to Deptford Dockyard, where she was commissioned in April 1797 and completed on 12 June 1797.

Endymion was not an exact copy of Pomone, being built to British design standards with stronger construction. Surprisingly, Endymion sailed even better than Pomone, reaching 14.4 knots (26.7 km/h; 16.6 mph), the highest recorded speed during the Age of Sail. Reclassified as a 48-gun fourth-rate frigate in February 1817, then as 50-gun, and finally as 44-gun in February 1839, Endymion's fine qualities were such that she continued to be praised for nearly half a century. She was finally broken up at Plymouth Dockyard in June 1868.

1812 Programme
Early in 1812, war with the United States seemed inevitable. To cope with the heavy American 24-pounder frigates of the Constitution-type, the Admiralty decided to build a batch of new 24-pounder frigates. During the long war with France, the standard British frigate was of about 1,000 tons and armed with a main battery of only 18-pounders, no match for the big US ships. The only proven design for a suitable 24-pounder frigate was that of Endymion, and in May 1812 two ships were ordered from Wigram, Wells & Green of Blackwall Yard, who were to construct all five ships eventually built. They differed from the prototype by being constructed of "fir" (actually, pitch pine) rather than oak, and mounted an extra (fourteenth) pair of 24-pounder guns on the upper deck forward. All would be reclassified as 50-gun fourth-rate frigates in February 1817; however, the use of softwood in their construction was such that they were only intended for a short lifetime, and indeed all five were taken to pieces after a few years' service.

The first pair were originally ordered on 4 May 1812 as Tagus and Eridanus of the 18-pounder armed Leda class, but were renamed on 7 January 1813 as Severn and Liffey. The War of 1812 broke out in June, and on 26 December two further ships were ordered, becoming Glasgow and Liverpool. The final ship was Forth, ordered on 7 January 1813. These five new ships were of a slightly modified design, having ports for 28 instead of 26 × 24-pounders and were built of softwood, to speed up the construction. The ships were launched from June 1813 to February 1814.

j3862.jpg
Scale: 1:48. Plan showing the inboard profile for Liffey (1813), Forth (1813), Severn (1813), Liverpool (1814), and Glasgow (1814), all fir-built 40-gun Fifth Rate, Frigates building at Blackwall by Wigram, Wells & Green.

Principal characteristics
There were small variations in the dimensions of the different ships:
  • Length on gundeck: 159 feet 2 inches
  • Beam: 41 feet 11 inches
  • Tonnage: 1246 to 1277 tons
  • Established armament: 28 (Endymion 26) × 24 pounders, 20 × 32-pounder carronades, 2 × 9 pounder chase guns
  • Complement: 340 men
  • Rated: 40-gun fifth-rates, rerated as 50-gun fourth-rates in 1817.
3.JPG


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Liverpool_(1814)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Endymion-class_frigate
https://collections.rmg.co.uk/colle...el-326412;browseBy=vessel;vesselFacetLetter=L
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1901 – Launch of HMS Bacchante, a Cressy-class armoured cruiser built for the Royal Navy


HMS Bacchante was a Cressy-class armoured cruiser built for the Royal Navy around 1900. Upon completion she was assigned to the Mediterranean Fleet as flagship of the fleet's cruiser squadron. She was reduced to reserve upon her return home in 1905 before returning to the Mediterranean in 1906. Six years later she returned home and was again placed in reserve. Recommissioned at the start of World War I, Bacchante became flagship of the 7th Cruiser Squadron. She was present at the Battle of Heligoland Bight a few weeks after the war began, but saw no combat.

She was transferred to convoy escort duties in the Bay of Biscay in late 1914 before being sent to Egypt in early 1915. Bacchante was then assigned to support Anzac troops during the Gallipoli Campaign by providing naval gunfire. She covered the landing at Anzac Cove in April as well as several subsequent operations. Returning home in late 1916, she became the flagship of the 9th Cruiser Squadron on convoy escort duties off the African coast in mid-1917. Bacchante remained there for the rest of the war and was reduced to reserve in 1919 before being sold for scrap in 1920.

HMS_Bacchante.jpg

Design and description
Bacchante was designed to displace 12,000 long tons (12,000 t). The ship had an overall length of 472 feet (143.9 m), a beam of 69 feet 9 inches (21.3 m) and a deep draught of 26 feet 9 inches (8.2 m). She was powered by two 4-cylinder triple-expansion steam engines, each driving one shaft, which produced a total of 21,000 indicated horsepower (15,660 kW) and gave a maximum speed of 21 knots (39 km/h; 24 mph). The engines were powered by 30 Belleville boilers. On their sea trials all of the Cressy-class cruisers, except the lead ship, exceeded their designed speed. She carried a maximum of 1,600 long tons (1,600 t) of coal and her complement ranged from 725[3] to 760 officers and enlisted men.

Her main armament consisted of two breech-loading (BL) 9.2-inch (234 mm) Mk X guns in single gun turrets, one each fore and aft of the superstructure. They fired 380-pound (170 kg) shells to a range of 15,500 yards (14,200 m). Her secondary armament of twelve BL 6-inch Mk VII guns was arranged in casemates amidships. Eight of these were mounted on the main deck and were only usable in calm weather. They had a maximum range of approximately 12,200 yards (11,200 m) with their 100-pound (45 kg) shells. A dozen quick-firing (QF) 12-pounder 12-cwt guns were fitted for defence against torpedo boats, eight on casemates on the upper deck and four in the superstructure.[8] The ship also carried three 3-pounder Hotchkiss guns and two submerged 18-inchtorpedo tubes.

The ship's waterline armour belt had a maximum thickness of 6 inches (152 mm) and was closed off by 5-inch (127 mm) transverse bulkheads. The armour of the gun turrets and their barbettes was 6 inches thick while the casemate armour was 5 inches thick. The protective deck armour ranged in thickness from 1–3 inches (25–76 mm) and the conning tower was protected by 12 inches (305 mm) of armour.

Launching_of_the_HMS_Euryalus_(1901).jpg
Launching of HMS Euryalus

Construction and service
Bacchante, named after the female devotees of the Greek god Bacchus, was laid down by John Brown & Company at their shipyard in Clydebank on 15 February 1899 and launched on 21 February 1901. She arrived at Chatham Dockyard the following October, to be equipped and prepared for her steam and gunnery trials and was completed in November 1902. Upon completion, she was commissioned by Captain Frederic Edward Errington Brock on 25 November 1902 and assigned to the Mediterranean Fleet as flagship of its cruiser squadron, replacing the HMS Andromeda. On arrival in the Mediterranean, Brock changed places on 20 December with Captain Christopher Cradock, who had until then been in command of the Andromeda. Bacchante remained in the Mediterranean under Cradock´s command until 1905 when she returned home and was placed in reserve. She returned there in 1906 for service with the 3rd and later the 6th Cruiser Squadrons, and in January 1907 her command was given to William Ruck-Keene, who held it until October 1910. Upon returning home in 1912, the ship was assigned to the reserve Third Fleet.

At the outbreak of the war in August 1914, Bacchante became the flagship of the 7th Cruiser Squadron, tasked with patrolling the Broad Fourteens of the North Sea in support of a force of destroyers and submarines based at Harwich which protected the eastern end of the English Channel from German warships attempting to attack the supply route between Englandand France. During the Battle of Heligoland Bight on 28 August, the ship was flagship of Rear Admiral Henry Campbell commanding Cruiser Force 'C', in reserve off the Dutch coast, and saw no action. After the sinking of Bacchante's three sister ships while patrolling the Broad Fourteens on 22 September, she, and her sister Euryalus, were transferred to the 12th Cruiser Squadron to escort ships between England and Gibraltar in early October.

Bacchante and Euryalus were transferred to Egypt in late January 1915 to reinforce the defences of the Suez Canal although the Turkish raid on the Suez Canal had already been repulsed by the time that they arrived in February. By this time the preliminary bombardments of the Turkish defences of the Dardanelles had already occurred and the sisters were transferred north in March as the Turks east of the Canal proved to be reasonably quiet.

During the landing at Anzac Cove during the Battle of Gallipoli on 25 April, Bacchante suppressed Turkish artillery positions at Gaba Tepe after touching her bow the beach for a better position from which to engage the guns. She provided fire support for forces near Anzac Cove for the next several months, particularly during the Third attack on Anzac Cove on 19 May when she, together with three predreadnought battleships, effectively suppressed the Turkish artillery assigned to support the attack. On 28 May Bacchante and the destroyer Kennetdestroyed enemy shipping in Budrum harbour. Three months later the cruiser bombarded Turkish troops during the Battle of Lone Pine on 6 August and Battle of Chunuk Bair 7–9 August. She was not present when the Allies began to evacuate Gallipoli in December, but her captain, Algernon Boyle, commanded the evacuation at Anzac Cove.

She remained in the Mediterranean until late 1916 when she returned home. She was damaged in a collision with the armoured cruiser Achilles in the Irish Sea in February 1917. After repairs she became flagship of the 9th Cruiser Squadron at Sierra Leone from April 1917 to November 1918. Bacchante was paid off at Chatham in April 1919 and sold for scrap on 1 July 1920.



The Cressy-class cruiser was a class of six armoured cruisers built for the Royal Navy around 1900. Their design's incorporation of a pair of 9.2-inch guns and armoured sides served to address criticism directed against the previous Diadem class — advances made possible by their 1,000 ton increase in displacement over their predecessors. The ships were notably stable, except for a susceptibility to pitching.

HMS_Euryalus_(1901).jpg
HMS Euryalus

Ships
  • HMS Cressy: launched 4 December 1899, torpedoed and sunk 22 September 1914
  • HMS Sutlej: launched 18 November 1899, scrapped 9 May 1921
  • HMS Aboukir: launched 16 May 1900, torpedoed and sunk 22 September 1914
  • HMS Hogue: launched 13 August 1900, torpedoed and sunk 22 September 1914
  • HMS Bacchante: launched 21 February 1901, scrapped 1 July 1920
  • HMS Euryalus: launched 20 May 1901, scrapped 1 July 1920


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Bacchante_(1901)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cressy-class_cruiser
 

Attachments

  • HMS_Euryalus_SLV_AllanGreen-c.jpg
    HMS_Euryalus_SLV_AllanGreen-c.jpg
    107.1 KB · Views: 3

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1907 - the steamship SS Berlin was driven onto the granite breakwater at the New Waterway ship canal in the Netherlands by large waves and then broke apart. Of 144 people aboard, 128 were lost.


SS Berlin was a steel ship, which was owned by the Great Eastern Railway and built for use on their ferry service from Harwich and the Hook of Holland, which the company had initiated in 1893.

The Great Eastern Railway ordered three steamships to operate the service. The ships were named Amsterdam, Berlin, and Vienna to publicise some of the rail connections from the Hook of Holland. Berlin was built in 1894 by Earles Shipbuilding and Engineering Company of Hull. She had berths for 218 first- and 120 second-class passengers.

SS_Berlin.jpg

Sinking
At 0500 on Thursday, 21 February 1907, the Hook lighthouse keeper recorded that Berlin was navigating the channel when she suddenly veered off course northward after a huge wavestruck her on her port quarter. Captain Precious and pilot Bronders managed to return the ship to her original course, but another wave struck Berlin and she swung northward again, causing her to become impaled on the tip of the granite breakwater at the entrance to the New Waterway.

Waves swept over the vessel, and both Precious and Bronders soon were swept overboard. The Dutch steam lifeboat President van Heel attempted to offer aid, but the rough seas prevented her from approaching the stricken vessel. Berlin broke in two amidships at 0600. The majority of those on board had fled to the bow, which sank when the ship broke in half. President van Heel could not close with the survivors on the stern of the vessel due to the weather. Only one man, a Captain Parkinson who was travelling as a passenger, was able to swim to the safety of the lifeboat.

Prince Henry made a visit the following day and went out on the pilot boat Helvoetsluis as Helvoetsluis and President van Heel attempted to recover the deceased from the sea and rescue the fifteen people remaining on the stern. The rescue of the people required a great deal of effort. An important role in this rescue was played by lifeboat Captain Martijn Sperling who used a small boat to reach the North Pier and ascend its iron beacon, from where he was able to throw ropes to the deck of the wreck to rescue 11 of the survivors. Captain Sperling then took a yawl from the salvage vessel Van der Tak alongside the wreck to rescue the remaining three survivors, all female.

Both Alberts Frères and the English firm The Warwick Trading Company filmed these events; their films are considered to be the only film of a current event in the Netherlands that attracted international attention in the early years of cinema.

Postcard_showing_rescue_efforts_on_S.S._Berlin.jpg
Rescue of survivors from SS Berlin.

Aftermath
The correct number of persons on board the ferry at that time was apparently not immediately known. Estimates in English newspapers ranged from 128 to 180 persons on board. It is now known that 128 of 144 persons on board were killed, including about 40 crew members. The Berlin tragedy was a very large disaster for its time, and the investigation into it became the standard for later government investigations of shipping accidents.

Following the disaster, the Railway Passengers Assurance Company, Ltd., now part of Aviva, paid out £8,600, its largest single loss at the time. Of the 128 people killed, 10 were insured by the company, with three holding general accident policies and seven holding boat and rail tickets.

AK_12103562_gr_1.jpg Wrak-Berlin-1907-e1438008120359.jpg 95072757_wrak_ss_berlin.JPG

Notable passengers
One notable passenger was Mr. Herbert, a King's Messenger travelling with diplomatic bags, including ones for Berlin, Copenhagen, and Tehran. Included in the Tehran bag was his jewelled sword, his decorations, all his other orders and ribbons including the insignia of the Knight Grand Commander of the Royal Victorian Order belonging to Prince ala-as-Saltanch. Although it is believed that Mr Herbert's body was recovered on 16 March 1907, his family asked for it to be treated as unidentified. The sword was recovered in early April 1907.

A second notable victim was Hendrik Spijker of the Spyker car company. Following his death in the sinking, investigations revealed that the company′s finances were in a parlous state, leading to the company declaring bankruptcy.

William Dearborn Munroe, general manager of the Arctic Coal Company, also drowned in the wreck.




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Berlin_(1894)
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1914 – Launch of SMS Kronprinz, the last battleship of the four-ship König class of the German Imperial Navy.


SMS Kronprinz was the last battleship of the four-ship König class of the German Imperial Navy. The battleship was laid down in November 1911 and launched on 21 February 1914. She was formally commissioned into the Imperial Navy on 8 November 1914, just over 4 months after the start of World War I. The name Kronprinz (Eng: "Crown Prince") refers to Crown Prince Wilhelm, and in June 1918, the ship was renamed Kronprinz Wilhelm in his honor. The battleship was armed with ten 30.5-centimeter (12.0 in) guns in five twin turrets and could steam at a top speed of 21 knots (39 km/h; 24 mph).

SMS_Kronprinz_Wilhelm_in_Scapa_Flow.jpg
SMS Kronprinz Wilhelm launched November 1914. Scuttled at Scapa Flow on on 21 June 1919.

Along with her three sister ships, König, Grosser Kurfürst and Markgraf, Kronprinz took part in most of the fleet actions during the war, including the Battle of Jutland on 31 May and 1 June 1916. Although near the front of the German line, she emerged from the battle unscathed. She was torpedoed by the British submarine HMS J1 on 5 November 1916 during an operation off the Danish coast. Following repairs, she participated in Operation Albion, an amphibious assault in the Baltic, in October 1917. During the operation Kronprinz engaged the Tsesarevich and forced her to retreat.

After Germany's defeat in the war and the signing of the Armistice in November 1918, Kronprinz and most of the capital ships of the High Seas Fleet were interned by the Royal Navy in Scapa Flow. The ships were disarmed and reduced to skeleton crews while the Allied powers negotiated the final version of the Treaty of Versailles. On 21 June 1919, days before the treaty was signed, the commander of the interned fleet, Rear Admiral Ludwig von Reuter, ordered the fleet to be scuttled to ensure that the British would not be able to seize the ships. Unlike most of the other scuttled ships, Kronprinz was never raised for scrapping; the wreck is still on the bottom of the harbour.


Design
Main article: König-class battleship

König_class_battleship_-_Jane's_Fighting_Ships,_1919_-_Project_Gutenberg_etext_24797.png
Plan and elevation view of a ship of the König class, from Jane's Fighting Ships 1919

The four König-class battleships were ordered as part of the Anglo-German naval arms race; they were the fourth generation of German dreadnought battleships, and they were built in response to the British Orion class that had been ordered in 1909. The Königs represented a development of the earlier Kaiser class, with the primary improvement being a more efficient arrangement of the main battery. The ships had also been intended to use a diesel engine on the center propeller shaft to increase their cruising range, but development of the diesels proved to be more complicated than expected, so an all-steam turbine powerplant was retained.

Kronprinz displaced 25,796 t (25,389 long tons) as built and 28,600 t (28,100 long tons) fully loaded, with a length of 175.4 m (575 ft 6 in), a beam of 19.5 m (64 ft 0 in) and a draft of 9.19 m (30 ft 2 in). She was powered by three Parsons steam turbines, with steam provided by three oil-fired and twelve coal-fired Schulz-Thornycroft water-tube boilers, which developed a total of 45,570 shaft horsepower (33,980 kW) and yielded a maximum speed of 21 knots (39 km/h; 24 mph). The ship had a range of 8,000 nautical miles (15,000 km; 9,200 mi) at a cruising speed of 12 knots (22 km/h; 14 mph). Her crew numbered 41 officers and 1,095 enlisted men.

She was armed with ten 30.5 cm (12.0 in) SK L/50 guns arranged in five twin gun turrets: two superfiring turrets each fore and aft and one turret amidships between the two funnels. Her secondary armament consisted of fourteen 15 cm (5.9 in) SK L/45 quick-firing guns and six 8.8 cm (3.5 in) SK L/45 quick-firing guns, all mounted singly in casemates. As was customary for capital ships of the period, she was also armed with five 50 cm (20 in) underwater torpedo tubes, one in the bow and two on each beam.

The ship's armored belt consisted of Krupp cemented steel that was 35 cm (14 in) thick in the central portion that protected the propulsion machinery spaces and the ammunition magazines, and was reduced to 18 cm (7.1 in) forward and 12 cm (4.7 in) aft. In the central portion of the ship, horizontal protection consisted of a 10 cm (3.9 in) deck, which was reduced to 4 cm (1.6 in) on the bow and stern. The main battery turrets had 30 cm (12 in) of armor plate on the sides and 11 cm (4.3 in) on the roofs, while the casemate guns had 15 cm (5.9 in) of armor protection. The sides of the forward conning tower were also 30 cm thick.

Bundesarchiv_Bild_146-1971-017-32,_Besetzung_Insel_Ösel,_Linienschiff_und_Zeppelin.jpg
The rear turrets of Grosser Kurfürst

The König class was a group of four battleships built for the German Kaiserliche Marine on the eve of World War I. The class was composed of König, Grosser Kurfürst, Markgraf, and Kronprinz. The most powerful warships of the German High Seas Fleet at the outbreak of war in 1914, the class operated as a unit throughout World War I—the V Division of the III Battle Squadron. The ships took part in a number of fleet operations during the war, including the Battle of Jutland, where they acted as the vanguard of the German line. They survived the war and were interned at Scapa Flow in November 1918. All four ships were scuttled on 21 June 1919 when Rear Admiral Ludwig von Reuter ordered the sinking of the entire High Seas Fleet.

The Königs were an improvement over the preceding Kaiser class; one of the primary changes being in the disposition of the main gun battery. The Kaiser-class ships mounted ten 30.5 cm (12 in) SK L/50 guns in five twin turrets; one turret was mounted fore, two aft in a superfiring arrangement, and the other two as wing turrets in a zig-zag "echelon" configuration amidships. For the König class, the use of main-gun wing turrets was abandoned. Instead, a second turret was moved forward and placed in a superfiring arrangement, and a single rear-facing turret was mounted centerline amidships; with a traverse allowing for broadsides but not forward-fire. The two superfiring aft turrets remained. This allowed for a wider angle of fire on the broadside, as all 10 guns could fire in a large arc.[a] It did, however, reduce the ship's forward-fire capabilities; from six guns with only limited traverse on the two wing turrets, to four guns with full traverse.


11.JPG


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMS_Kronprinz
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/König-class_battleship
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1916 - the Italian hospital ship HS Marechiaro was sunk by a mine laid by SM UC-12, killing 33–200 people.


Italian hospital ship Marechiaro was a steam ship originally built by an Italian shipping company, but requisitioned for use as an Italian hospital ship during the First World War. On February 21, 1916 she was sunk near the Albanian port of Durrës by a mine laid by the German U-boat UC-12. British drifters Hasting Castle and Selina saved 104 men from the water while 33 were killed. Other sources mention over 200 casualties.

1.JPG

Sinking
During the war SM UC-12 operated as a minelayer, and undertook 7 patrols in this role. Mines laid by UC-12 were credited with sinking 6 ships. One of these, the Italian Marechiaro sunk on 21 February 1916 and was listed as a hospital ship. Since Germany was not at war with Italy at this stage, though Austria was, UC 12, like other German U-boats in the Mediterranean, operated under the Austrian flag.

Marechiaro.JPG
Italian hospital ship Marechiaro


During the First World War, many hospital ships were attacked, both on purpose or by mistaken identity. They were sunk by either torpedo, mine or surface attack. They were easy as well as tragic targets, since they carried hundreds of wounded soldiers from the front lines.

Background
A hospital ship (HS) is designated for primary function as a medical treatment facility or hospital; most are operated by the military forces or navies of various countries around the world, as they are intended to be used in or near war zones. Hospital ships were covered under the Hague Convention X of 1907.

Article four of the Hague Convention X outlined the restrictions for a hospital ship:
  • The ship should give medical assistance to wounded personnel of all nationalities
  • The ship must not be used for any military purpose
  • Ships must not interfere or hamper enemy combatant vessels
  • Belligerents as designated by the Hague Convention can search any hospital ship to investigate violations of the above restrictions.
If any of the restrictions were violated, the ship could be determined as an enemy combatant and be sunk. Investigators from neutral countries like Spain were allowed to inspect hospital ships to confirm that Article Four wasn't being violated.

Hospital ships display large Red Crosses or Red Crescents

The high command of Imperial German viewed Allied hospital ships as violating the Hague Convention and ordered its submarine forces to target them as part of their Unrestricted submarine warfare on Allied shipping. Even with the inspections from neutral countries the German High command alleged that hospital ships were violating Article Four by transporting able-bodied soldiers to the battleground. The biggest hospital ship sunk by either mine or torpedo in the First World War was Britannic, the sister of Olympic and the ill-fated Titanic. Britannic hit a mine on November 21, 1916; 30 people were killed, but the rest of the crew and passengers were able to escape. The largest loss of life caused by the sinking of a hospital ship would be Llandovery Castle. The ship was hit by a torpedo from the German U-boat U-86 on June 27, 1918. Shortly thereafter, the submarine surfaced and gunned down most of the survivors; only 24 were rescued. After the war, the captain of U-86, Lieutenant Helmut Patzig, and two of his lieutenants were charged with war crimes and arraigned for trial, but Patzig disappeared, and the two lieutenants both escaped after being convicted and sentenced to prison. The Allies weren't the only ones who had their ships attacked at the beginning of the war, the German hospital ship Ophelia was seized by British naval forces as a spy ship and near the close of the war the Austrian hospital ship Baron Call was unsuccessfully attacked by torpedo on October 29, 1918.

a list with the sunken hospital ships during WW I you can find on wikipedia




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HS_Marechiaro
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_hospital_ships_sunk_in_World_War_I
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1917 - passenger ship SS Mendi was taking members of the 5th Battalion, South African Native Labour Corps, to France.
At 05:00 hrs, while under the escort of the destroyer HMS Brisk, Mendi was struck and cut almost in half by SS Darro. Of 823 people aboard, 646 were lost.




SS Mendi was a British 4,230 GRT passenger steamship that was built in 1905 and, as a troopship, sank after collision with great loss of life in 1917.

SS_Mendi.jpg

Alexander Stephen and Sons of Linthouse in Glasgow, Scotland launched her on 18 June 1905 for the British and African Steam Navigation Company, which appointed group company Elder Dempster & Co to manage her on their Liverpool-West Africa trades. In 1916 during the First World War the UK Admiralty chartered her as a troopship. On 21 February 1917 a large cargo steamship, Darro, collided with her in the English Channel south of the Isle of Wight. Mendi sank killing 646 people, most of whom were black South African troops. The new port admin building at the Port of Ngqura, South Africa, has been named eMendi in commemoration of the SS Mendi.

mendi-image-courtesy-of-john-gribble-collection.jpg


Final voyage

HMS_Brisk_1910.jpg
The destroyer HMS Brisk, which escorted Mendi and rescued survivors

Mendi had sailed from Cape Town carrying 823 men of the 5th Battalion the South African Native Labour Corps to serve in France. She called at Lagos in Nigeria, where a naval gun was mounted on her stern. She next called at Plymouth and then headed up the English Channel toward Le Havre in northern France, escorted by the Acorn-class destroyer HMS Brisk.

Mendi's complement was a mixture characteristic of many UK merchant ships at the time. Officers, stewards, cooks, signallers and gunners were British; firemen and other crew were West Africans, most of them from Sierra Leone.

The South African Native Labour Corps men aboard her came from a range of social backgrounds, and from a number of different peoples spread over the South African provinces and neighbouring territories. (287 were from Transvaal, 139 from the Eastern Cape, 87 from Natal, 27 from Northern Cape, 26 from the Orange Free State, 26 from Basutoland, eight from Bechuanaland (Botswana), five from Western Cape, one from Rhodesia and one from South West Africa). Most had never seen the sea before this voyage, and very few could swim. The officers and NCOs were white Southern Africans.

sa_armay_1917.jpg
Black privates standing at their last parade before boarding the SS Mendi

Loss
At 5 am on 21 February 1917, in thick fog about 10 nautical miles (19 km) south of St. Catherine's Point on the Isle of Wight, the Royal Mail Steam Packet Company cargo ship Darro accidentally rammed Mendi's starboard quarter, breaching her forward hold. Darro was an 11,484 GRT ship, almost three times the size of the Mendi, sailing in ballast to Argentina to load meat. Darro survived the collision but Mendi sank, killing 616 Southern Africans (607 of them black troops) and 30 crew.

Some men were killed outright in the collision; others were trapped below decks. Many others gathered on Mendi's deck as she listed and sank. Oral history records that the men met their fate with great dignity. An interpreter, Isaac Williams Wauchope (also known as Isaac Wauchope Dyobha), who had previously served as a Minister in the Congregational Native Church of Fort Beaufort and Blinkwater, is reported to have calmed the panicked men by raising his arms aloft and crying out in a loud voice:

"Be quiet and calm, my countrymen. What is happening now is what you came to do...you are going to die, but that is what you came to do. Brothers, we are drilling the death drill. I, a Xhosa, say you are my brothers...Swazis, Pondos, Basotho...so let us die like brothers. We are the sons of Africa. Raise your war-cries, brothers, for though they made us leave our assegais in the kraal, our voices are left with our bodies."
The damaged Darro did not stay to assist, but Brisk lowered her boats, whose crews then rescued survivors.

The investigation into the accident led to a formal hearing in summer 1917, held in Caxton Hall, Westminster. It opened on 24 July, sat for five days spread over the next fortnight, and concluded on 8 August. The court found Darro's Master, Henry W Stump, guilty of "having travelled at a dangerously high speed in thick fog, and of having failed to ensure that his ship emitted the necessary fog sound signals." It suspended Stump's licence for a year.

The reason for Stump's decision not to help Mendi's survivors has been a source of speculation. There is however no evidence of his state of mind or intention. Certainly Darro was vulnerable to attack by enemy submarines, both as a large merchant ship and having sustained damage that put her out of action for up to three months.

11.jpg
More than 800 members of the South African Native Labour Corps were on board the Mendi at the time of the disaster

Wreck site
In 1945 Mendi's wreck was known to be 11.3 nautical miles (21 km) off Saint Catherine's Light, but it was not positively identified until 1974. The ship rests upright on the sea floor. She has started to break up, exposing her boilers.

In 2006 the Commonwealth War Graves Commission launched an education resource called "Let us die like brothers" to highlight the role played by black Southern Africans during the First World War. In death they are afforded the same level of commemoration as all other Commonwealth war dead.

In December 2006 English Heritage commissioned Wessex Archaeology to make an initial desk-based appraisal of the wreck. The project will identify a range of areas for potential future research and serve as the basis for a possible unintrusive survey of the wreck itself in the near future. In 2017 the ship's bell was handed in anonymously to a BBC journalist. The Prime Minister, Theresa May returned the bell to South Africa while on an official visit there in August 2018.




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Mendi
https://www.sahistory.org.za/article/ss-mendi
https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-hampshire-38971394
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1939 – Launch of HMS King George V (pennant number 41), the lead ship of the five British King George V-class battleships of the Royal Navy.


HMS King George V (pennant number 41) was the lead ship of the five British King George V-class battleships of the Royal Navy. Laid down in 1937 and commissioned in 1940, King George V operated during the Second World War in all three major theatres of war, the Atlantic, Mediterranean and Pacific, as well as part of the British Home Fleet and Pacific Fleets. In May 1941, along with HMS Rodney, King George V was involved in the hunt for and pursuit of the German battleship Bismarck , eventually inflicting severe damage which led to the German vessel sinking. On 1 May 1942 the destroyer HMS Punjabi sank after a collision with King George V in foggy conditions. King George V took part in Operation Husky (the allied landings in Sicily) and bombarded the island of Levanzo and the port of Trapani. She also escorted part of the surrendered Italian Fleet, which included the battleships Andrea Doria and Caio Duilio, to Malta. In 1945 King George V took part in operations against the Japanese in the Pacific.

1280px-King_George_V_class_battleship_1945.jpg
HMS King George V enters Apra Harbour, Guam with sailors on deck in 1945

King George V was made flagship of the British Home Fleet on 1 April 1941, she remained so during the rest of the war and became a training battleship in November 1947

Design
General characteristics

King George V was built by Vickers-Armstrong at Walker Naval Yard, Newcastle upon Tyne; she was laid down on 1 January 1937, launched on 21 February 1939 and commissioned on 11 December 1940. The ship had an overall length of 745 ft (227 m), a beam of 112 ft (34 m) and a draught of 34 ft (10 m). She displaced 38,031 tons at normal load and 42,237 tons at full load. After her refit in 1944, she displaced 39,100 tonnes at standard load, and 44,460 tons at full load. She could carry 3,918 tons of fuel oil, 192 tons of diesel oil, 256 tons of reserve feed water and 444 tons of freshwater. Based on the designed fuel consumption, range was: 4,000 nautical miles (7,400 km) at 25 knots (46 km/h), 10,250 nautical miles (18,980 km) at 15 knots (28 km/h) and 14,400 nautical miles (26,700 km) at 10 knots (19 km/h). However, in practice fuel consumption was much higher, and at 16 knots (30 km/h) the actual range was about 6,300 nautical miles (11,700 km) with a five percent reserve allowance. Designed within the tight 35,000 ton limitations of the Washington Naval Treaty, wartime service necessitated increases over the design displacement, seriously reducing freeboard and affecting seaworthiness. This was most acute at the already low bow. With too little buoyancy forward the bows were easily buried even in moderate seas, with spray washing up over both forward turrets. Heavy seas could flood ‘A’ turret, drenching both men and machinery within.

1280px-HMS_King_George_V_midships_SLV_Green.jpg
Midships in 1945

Propulsion
King George V was equipped with eight Admiralty boilers. This configuration was a little more conventional than the preceding Nelson class, with boiler rooms placed side by side and with each pair associated with a turbine room astern of them. The total heating surface of the boiler plants in King George V was 78,144 sq ft (7,259.8 m2). The 416-ton boiler installation produced more than 100,000 shaft horsepower (75,000 kW), giving a top speed of 28 knots. The eight boilers were more economic in space and fuel than the twenty-four boilers in the battlecruiser HMS Hood. Fewer, but larger, boilers lowered the weight per unit of heat delivered, as did increased boiler efficiency and consumption of fuel per unit area of heating surface. This made King George V the fastest battleship in the British fleet but slower than the German, French or the new Italian capital ships, or the battlecruisers HMS Hood, Repulse and Renown.

King George V had four sets of Parsons geared turbines. Two main turbines were arranged in series and drove a shaft through double helical gears. An astern turbine was incorporated in the exhaust casing of the low-pressure turbine, and a cruising turbine was coupled directly to the high-pressure turbine. A speed of 28.5 knots was expected at standard displacement and 27.5 knots at full-load displacement on normal output; corresponding speeds at overload condition were 29.25 and 28.25 knots respectively. The turbine unit was a low-speed type (2,257 rpm) coupled to a single reduction gear which produced 236 rpm at the propeller shaft.

HMSHoweBTurretSydney1944.jpg
The external vertical armour belt is clearly visible here on Howe

Armament
Main battery
The tight limitations of the Washington Naval Treaty raised many challenges and required difficult compromises if they were to be met. To avoid the class being outgunned by the new ships of foreign navies, especially as by the mid-1930s the Treaty had been renounced by Japan and Italy, Churchill wrote to the First Lord of the Admiralty in 1936, voicing strong objections to the proposed armament of 10 14-inch guns. His proposal was for nine 16-inch guns. However, when completed King George V mounted ten 14-inch (360 mm) guns. They were mounted in one Mark II twin turret forward and two Mark III quadruple turrets, one forward and one aft. They could be elevated 40 degrees and depressed 3 degrees. Training arcs were: "A" turret, 286 degrees; "B" turret, 270 degrees and "Y" turret, 270 degrees. Training and elevating was achieved through a hydraulic drive, with rates of two and eight degrees per second, respectively. A full gun broadside weighed 15,950 pounds; a salvo could be fired every 30 seconds. The quadruple turrets weighed 1,582 tons, the twin turret 915 tons. The turrets were designed by the Vickers Armstrong's Elswick Works, but sets of each type of equipment were manufactured by Vickers Armstrongs in Barrow. A considerable amount of design effort was expended to make the turrets as flashtight as possible. This complicated the mechanical design of the turrets, particularly the quadruple mountings. Due to insufficient clearances and slightly distorted link mechanisms, failures in the intricate safety interlocks in the loading sequence for antiflash precautions caused jams during drills and practice firing. During the summer of 1941 the King George V-class battleships had their main armament turrets and turret linkages modified to correct the operational faults revealed during the hunt and destruction of Bismarck.[14] HMS King George V used an Admiralty Fire Control Table Mark IX to control her main armament.

1280px-HMS_King_George_V_secondary_turret_SLV_Green.jpg
Secondary battery 5.25-inch dual purpose turret of King George V

Secondary battery
The secondary armament consisted of sixteen 5.25-inch (133 mm) guns in eight twin mounts, weighing 81 tons each. They were grouped at the four corners of the citadel, with a twin mount on the main deck and another superimposed above it nearer amidships. This disposition gave better arcs of fire, freedom from blast, more separation of the magazines and a better arrangement of the ammunition supply. The cupolas for these mounts revolved on either the upper or superstructure deck; between deck mountings travelled on roller paths on the armoured deck. This permitted a flat-trajectory or high-angle fire. Loading was semi-automatic, normal rate of fire was ten to twelve rounds per minute. The maximum range of the Mk I guns was 24,070 yards (22,009.6 m) at a 45-degree elevation, the anti-aircraft ceiling was 49,000 feet (14,935.2 m). The guns could be elevated to 70 degrees and depressed to 5 degrees. However, the guns could only practically fire seven to eight rounds per minute, due to the heavy weight of the shell and the fact that the 5.25-inch round was semi-fixed, requiring the crew to separately load the cartridge and shell into the breech. King George V introduced the High Angle Control System Mark IVGB anti-aircraft fire control system to the Royal Navy, which, along with the Mk IV Pom-Pom Director, pioneered the use of the Gyro Rate Unit.

Anti-aircraft battery
The King George V design had four 0.5-inch quadruple machine gun mounts, but in 1939 these were replaced by two Mark VI pom-pom mounts. In 1940, to combat air attack, four Unrotated Projectile mountings were fitted, on "B" turret, two on "Y" turret, one replaced a pom-pom mount added in 1939 at the stern. The pom-poms mounted in the King George V were designed and produced by Vickers Armstrongs as a result of a post-First World War requirement for a multiple mounting which was effective against close-range bombers or torpedo planes. The first model, tested in 1927, was superior to anything developed in other countries at the time and in 1938 the Mark VI* had a muzzle velocity of 2,400 feet per second, a 1.594-inch bore and a barrel length of 40 calibres. They fired a 1.8-pound (0.82 kg) shell at a rate of 96–98 rounds per minute for controlled fire and 115 rounds per minute for automatic fire. The range of the Mark VI* was 6,800 yards (6,200 m), at a muzzle velocity of 2,300 feet per second. The Mark VI octuple mount weighed 16 tons. The Mark VII quadruple mount weighed 10.8 tons if power operated; it could be elevated to 80 degrees and depressed to 10 degrees at a rate of 25 degrees per second which was also the rate of train. The normal ammunition supply on board for the Mark VI was 1,800 rounds per barrel. King George V introduced the Mk IV Pom-pom director to the Royal Navy in 1940, becoming the first ship in the world to feature gyroscopic target tracking in tachymetric anti-aircraft directors.


The King George V-class battleships were the most modern British battleships in commission during World War II. Five ships of this class were built: HMS King George V (1940), HMS Prince of Wales (1941), HMS Duke of York (1941), HMS Howe (1942) and HMS Anson (1942).

12.JPG



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_King_George_V_(41)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_George_V-class_battleship_(1939)
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
21 February 1945 – World War II: During the Battle of Iwo Jima, Japanese kamikaze planes sink the escort carrier USS Bismarck Sea and damage the USS Saratoga.


USS Bismarck Sea (CVE-95) was a Casablanca class escort carrier of the United States Navy. She was launched on 17 April 1944 by Kaiser Co., Inc., Vancouver, Washington, under a Maritime Commission contract as Alikula Bay; sponsored by Mrs. M. C. Wallgren, wife of Senator Monrad Wallgren; renamed Bismarck Sea on 16 May 1944; transferred to the Navy on 20 May 1944; and commissioned the same day, with Captain J. L. Pratt in command.

USS_Bismarck_Sea_(CVE-95)_underway_on_24_June_1944_(80-G-240135).jpg
USS Bismarck Sea (CVE-95) underway, 24 June 1944, taking it green, seen from an altitude of 500' (152 m). Location unknown

Service history
During July and August 1944, Bismarck Sea escorted convoys between San Diego, California, and the Marshall Islands. After repairs and additional training at San Diego, she steamed to Ulithi, Caroline Islands, to join Admiral Thomas C. Kinkaid's 7th Fleet. During 14–23 November 1944, she operated off Leyte in support of the operations and later took part in the Lingayen Gulf landings (9–18 January 1945). On 16 February, she arrived off Iwo Jima to support the invasion.

0309501.jpg
USS Bismarck Sea (CVE-95) loading Douglas SBD Dauntless scout bombers from a barge, circa 1944.

On 21 February 1945, despite heavy gunfire, two Japanese kamikazes hit the Bismarck Sea, first on the starboard side under the first 40 mm gun (aft), crashing through the hangar deck and striking the ship's magazines. The fire was nearly under control when the second plane struck the aft elevator shaft, exploding on impact and destroying the fire fighting salt water distribution system, thus preventing any further damage control. Shortly after, the order was given to abandon ship. The USS Bismarck Sea sank with the loss of 318 men, and was the last US Navy aircraft carrier to be lost during World War II. Three destroyers and three destroyer escorts rescued survivors over the next 12 hours, between them saving a total of 605 officers and men from her crew of 923. Survivors were then transferred to Dickens and Highlands.

According to the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships, USS Edmonds directed the rescue operations of the remaining hands, saving 378 of the carrier's crew including the commanding officer, in spite of darkness, heavy seas and continuing air attacks. Thirty of Edmonds' own crew went over the side to bring the wounded and exhausted carrier men to safety.

0309502.jpg
Large explosion on board USS Bismarck Sea (CVE-95) during the night of February 21, 1945. She was struck by two Kamikazes within two minutes of each other, while she was taking part in the Iwo Jima operation. She sank as a result of her damage. Photographed from USS Saginaw Bay (CVE‑82).



USS Saratoga (CV-3) was a Lexington-class aircraft carrier built for the United States Navy during the 1920s. Originally designed as a battlecruiser, she was converted into one of the Navy's first aircraft carriers during construction to comply with the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922. The ship entered service in 1928 and was assigned to the Pacific Fleet for her entire career. Saratoga and her sister ship, Lexington, were used to develop and refine carrier tactics in a series of annual exercises before World War II. On more than one occasion these exercises included successful surprise attacks on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. She was one of three prewar US fleet aircraft carriers, along with Enterprise and Ranger, to serve throughout World War II.

1280px-USS_Saratoga_(CV-3)_landing_planes_on_6_June_1935_(80-G-651292).jpg

Shortly after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Saratoga was the centerpiece of the unsuccessful American effort to relieve Wake Island and was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine a few weeks later. After lengthy repairs, the ship supported forces participating in the Guadalcanal Campaign and her aircraft sank the light carrier Ryūjō during the Battle of the Eastern Solomons in August 1942. She was again torpedoed the following month and returned to the Solomon Islands area after repairs were completed.

In 1943, Saratoga supported Allied forces involved in the New Georgia Campaign and invasion of Bougainville in the northern Solomon Islands and her aircraft twice attacked the Japanese base at Rabaul in November. Early in 1944, her aircraft provided air support during the Gilbert and Marshall Islands Campaign before she was transferred to the Indian Ocean for several months to support the British Eastern Fleet as it attacked targets in Java and Sumatra. After a brief refit in mid-1944, the ship became a training ship for the rest of the year.

In early 1945, Saratoga participated in the Battle of Iwo Jima as a dedicated night fighter carrier. Several days into the battle, she was badly damaged by kamikaze hits and was forced to return to the United States for repairs. While under repair, the ship, now increasingly obsolete, was permanently modified as a training carrier with some of her hangar deck converted into classrooms. Saratoga remained in this role for the rest of the war and was then used to ferry troops back to the United States after the Japanese surrender in August. In mid-1946, the ship was a target for nuclear weapon tests during Operation Crossroads. She survived the first test with little damage, but was sunk by the second test.

USS_Saratoga_Kamikaze_hit_21_February_1945.jpg
Saratoga after having been hit by a kamikaze, 21 February 1945


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Iwo_Jima

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Bismarck_Sea
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casablanca-class_escort_carrier
https://www.navsource.org/archives/03/095.htm
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Saratoga_(CV-3)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lexington-class_aircraft_carrier
http://www.navsource.org/archives/02/03.htm
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
Other Events on 21 February


1705 – Birth of Edward Hawke, 1st Baron Hawke, English admiral and politician (d. 1781)

Admiral of the Fleet Edward Hawke, 1st Baron Hawke, KB, PC (21 February 1705 – 17 October 1781)[1] was a Royal Navy officer. As captain of the third-rate HMS Berwick he took part in the Battle of Toulon in February 1744 during the War of the Austrian Succession. He also captured six ships of a French squadron in the Bay of Biscay in the Second Battle of Cape Finisterre in October 1747.

800px-Edward_Hawke_1.jpg

Hawke went on to achieve a victory over a French fleet at the Battle of Quiberon Bay in November 1759 during the Seven Years' War, preventing a French invasion of Britain. He developed the concept of a Western Squadron, keeping an almost continuous blockade of the French coast throughout the war.

Hawke also sat in the House of Commons from 1747 to 1776 and served as First Lord of the Admiralty for five years between 1766 and 1771. In this post, he was successful in bringing the navy's spending under control and also oversaw the mobilisation of the navy during the Falklands Crisis in 1770.

1.JPG 2.JPG

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Hawke,_1st_Baron_Hawke


1810 - HMS Horatio (1807 - 44), Cpt. George Scott, captured French Fifth Rate flûte 'La Nécessité' (1810 - 28)


HMS Horatio was a Lively-class fifth-rate 38-gun sailing frigate of the British Royal Navy, built during the Napoleonic Wars.

Lively class 38-gun fifth rates 1804-13, designed by William Rule. The sixteen ships of the Lively-class were based on a design dating from 1799 by William Rule, the Surveyor of the Navy, and were probably the most successful British frigate design of the time.

j5326.jpg
Lines (ZAZ2518)

j5382.jpg
Frame (ZAZ2464)

https://collections.rmg.co.uk/colle...7;browseBy=vessel;vesselFacetLetter=H;start=0
https://threedecks.org/index.php?display_type=show_ship&id=4776
https://threedecks.org/index.php?display_type=show_ship&id=22451


1942 - USS Triton (SS 201) sinks Japanese merchant cargo vessel Shokyu Maru in the East China Sea, 60 miles south of Quelpart Island.

USS Triton (SS-201), a Tambor-class submarine, was the first submarine and third ship of the United States Navy to be named for Triton,a mythological Greek god, the messenger of the sea. Her keel was down on 5 July 1939 by the Portsmouth Navy Yard. She was launched on 25 March 1940 sponsored by Mrs. Martha E. King, wife of Rear Admiral Ernest J. King, and commissioned on 15 August 1940 with Lieutenant Commander Willis A. "Pilly" Lent (Class of 1925)[10] in command.

USS_Triton_(SS-201)_H99279.jpg

The new submarine held her shakedown training in the Caribbean Sea from 14 January to 26 March 1941 and then conducted training and minelaying exercises in the Portsmouth, New Hampshire - New London, Connecticut area. Triton departed Portsmouth on 1 July, transited the Panama Canal on 12 July, and arrived at San Diego, California, on 20 July. Nine days later, she and sister ship USS Trout (SS-202) headed for Hawaii and arrived at Pearl Harbor on 4 August 1941.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Triton_(SS-201)


2015 – Launch of Anthem of the Seas is a Quantum-class cruise ship owned by Royal Caribbean International (RCI) and the second ship of her class.

Anthem of the Seas is a Quantum-class cruise ship owned by Royal Caribbean International (RCI) and the second ship of her class. The Quantum class is the third largest class of cruise ships behind MSC Cruises's Meraviglia class and Royal Caribbean International's Oasis class by gross tonnage.

Anthem_of_the_Seas_-_Cruise_Ship_in_Hamburg_(16720740030).jpg

Concept and construction
On 11 February 2011, Royal Caribbean announced that they had ordered a new class of ships from the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, the first of which was scheduled to be delivered by autumn 2014. At the time, the project was code-named "Project Sunshine". Later that year, two 20.5-megawatt ABB Azipod XO propulsion units were ordered for that ship.


On 29 February 2012 the company announced that a second "Project Sunshine" ship had been ordered and would be delivered by Spring 2015, and ordered identical Azipod propulsion units shortly thereafter. Just under a year later, on 31 January 2013, Royal Caribbean announced the official name of the new class of ships, Quantum Class, as well as the names of the first two ships in the class, Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthem_of_the_Seas
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum-class_cruise_ship
 

Uwek

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Dec 25, 2017
Messages
16,409
Points
938

Location
Vienna, Austria
Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
22 February 1512 – Death of Amerigo Vespucci (March 9, 1454 – February 22, 1512)


Amerigo Vespucci (March 9, 1454 – February 22, 1512) was an Italian explorer, financier, navigator, and cartographer born in the Republic of Florence. He became a naturalized citizen of the Crown of Castile in 1505.

Portrait_of_Amerigo_Vespucci.jpg
Posthumous portrait in the Giovio Series at the Uffizi, Florence, attributed to Cristofano dell'Altissimo

Around 1502, Vespucci demonstrated that Brazil and the West Indies did not represent Asia's eastern outskirts, as initially conjectured from Columbus' voyages, but constituted an entirely separate and unexplored land mass, colloquially referred to as the New World. It came to be termed "the Americas", a name derived from Americus, the Latin version of Vespucci's first name.

1.JPG

Historical role
In 1508, the position of chief of navigation of Spain (piloto mayor de Indias) was created for Vespucci, with the responsibility of planning navigation for voyages to the Indies.

Vespucci_arrives_in_New_World.jpg
Vespucci's first encounter with Native Americans in Honduras, 1497 (De Bry's illustration, c.1592)

Two letters attributed to Vespucci were published during his lifetime. Mundus Novus (New World) was a Latin translation of a lost Italian letter sent from Lisbon to Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici. It describes a voyage to South America in 1501–1502. Mundus Novus was published in late 1502 or early 1503 and soon reprinted and distributed in numerous European countries. Lettera di Amerigo Vespucci delle isole nuovamente trovate in quattro suoi viaggi (Letter of Amerigo Vespucci concerning the isles newly discovered on his four voyages), known as Lettera al Soderini or just Lettera, was a letter in Italian addressed to Piero Soderini. Printed in 1504 or 1505, it claimed to be an account of four voyages to the Americas made by Vespucci between 1497 and 1504. A Latin translation was published by the German Martin Waldseemüller in 1507 in Cosmographiae Introductio, a book on cosmography and geography, as Quattuor Americi Vespucij navigationes (Four Voyages of Amerigo Vespucci).

On March 22, 1508, King Ferdinand made Vespucci chief navigator of Spain at a huge salary and commissioned him to found a school of navigation, in order to standardize and modernize navigation techniques used by Iberian sea captains then exploring the world. Vespucci even developed a rudimentary, but fairly accurate method of determining longitude (which only more accurate chronometers would later improve upon).

Cannibalism_in_the_New_World,_from_Vespucci.jpg
The first known depiction of cannibalism in the New World. Engraving by Johann Froschauer for an edition of Amerigo Vespucci's Mundus Novus, published in Augsburg in 1505

In the 18th century, three unpublished familiar letters from Vespucci to Lorenzo de' Medici were rediscovered. One describes a voyage made in 1499–1500 which corresponds with the second of the "four voyages". Another was written from Cape Verde in 1501 in the early part of the third of the four voyages, before crossing the Atlantic. The third letter was sent from Lisbon after the completion of that voyage.

Some have suggested that Vespucci, in the two letters published in his lifetime, was exaggerating his role and constructed deliberate fabrications. However, many scholars now believe that the two letters were not written by him but were fabrications by others based in part on genuine letters by Vespucci. It was the publication and widespread circulation of the letters that might have led Waldseemüller to name the new continent America on his world map of 1507 in Lorraine. Vespucci used a Latinised form of his name, Americus Vespucius, in his Latin writings, which Waldseemüller used as a base for the new name, taking the feminine form America, according to the prevalent view. The book accompanying the map stated: "I do not see what right any one would have to object to calling this part, after Americus who discovered it and who is a man of intelligence, Amerige, that is, the Land of Americus, or America: since both Europa and Asia got their names from women". It is possible that Vespucci was not aware that Waldseemüller had named the continent after him.

The two disputed letters claim that Vespucci made four voyages to America, while at most two can be verified from other sources. At the moment, there is a dispute between historians on when Vespucci visited the mainland the first time. Some historians like Germán Arciniegas and Gabriel Camargo Pérez think that his first voyage was made in June 1497 with the Spanish pilot Juan de la Cosa.

Vespucci's real historical importance may well rest more in his letters, whether he wrote them all or not, than in his discoveries. From these letters, the European public learned about the newly discovered continents of the Americas for the first time; their existence became generally known throughout Europe within a few years of the letters' publication. In his words:

..concerning my return from those new regions which we found and explored ... we may rightly call a new world. Because our ancestors had no knowledge of them, and it will be a matter wholly new to all those who hear about them, for this transcends the view held by our ancients, inasmuch as most of them hold that there is no continent to the south beyond the equator, but only the sea which they named the Atlantic and if some of them did aver that a continent there was, they denied with abundant argument that it was a habitable land. But that this their opinion is false and utterly opposed to the truth ... my last voyage has made manifest; for in those southern parts I have found a continent more densely peopled and abounding in animals than our Europe Asia or Africa, and, in addition, a climate milder and more delightful than in any other region known to us, as you shall learn in the following account.

Voyages
The first and fourth voyages are perhaps fabricated, but the second and third are certain.

First voyage
A letter published in 1504 purports to be an account by Vespucci, written to Soderini, of a lengthy visit to the New World, leaving Spain in May 1497 and returning in October 1498. However, some modern scholarshttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amerigo_Vespucci#endnote_5thb_/ have doubted that this voyage took place, and consider this letter a forgery. Whoever did write the letter makes several observations of native customs, including use of hammocks and sweat lodges.

Second voyage
About 1499–1500, Vespucci joined an expedition in the service of Spain, with Alonso de Ojeda (or Hojeda) as the fleet commander. The intention was to sail around the southern end of the African mainland into the Indian Ocean. After hitting land at the coast of what is now Guyana, the two seem to have separated. Vespucci sailed southward, discovering the mouth of the Amazon River and reaching 6°S, before turning around and seeing Trinidad and the Orinoco River and returning to Spain by way of Hispaniola. The letter, to Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici, claims that Vespucci determined his longitude celestially on August 23, 1499, while on this voyage. However, that claim may be fraudulent, which could cast doubt on the letter's credibility.

Third voyage (Letter to Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici)
Amerigo_Vespucci_(with_turban).jpg

Portrait engraving of Vespucci by Crispijn van de Passe, which titles him "discoverer and conqueror of Brazilian land"

The last certain voyage of Vespucci was led by Gonçalo Coelho in 1501–1502 in the service of Portugal. Departing from Lisbon, the fleet sailed first to Cape Verde where they met two of Pedro Álvares Cabral's ships returning from India. In a letter from Cape Verde, Vespucci says that he hopes to visit the same lands that Álvares Cabral had explored, suggesting that the intention is to sail west to Asia, as on the 1499–1500 voyage. On reaching the coast of Brazil, they sailed south along the coast of South America to Rio de Janeiro's bay. If his own account is to be believed, he reached the latitude of Patagonia before turning back, although this also seems doubtful, since his account does not mention the broad estuary of the Río de la Plata, which he must have seen if he had gotten that far south. Portuguese maps of South America, created after the voyage of Coelho and Vespucci, do not show any land south of present-day Cananéiaat 25° S, so this may represent the southernmost extent of their voyages.

After the first half of the expedition, Vespucci mapped Alpha and Beta Centauri, as well as the constellation Crux, the Southern Cross and the Coalsack Nebula. Although these stars had been known to the ancient Greeks, gradual precession had lowered them below the Europeanhorizon so that they had been forgotten. On his return to Lisbon, Vespucci wrote in a letter from Seville to Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici that the land masses they explored were much larger than anticipated and different from the Asia described by Ptolemy or Marco Polo and therefore, must be a New World, that is, a previously unknown fourth continent, after Europe, Asia, and Africa.

Fourth voyage
_America__(Engraving)_Nova_reperta_(Speculum_diuersarum_imaginum_speculatiuarum_1638).tif.png

Vespucci awakens "America" in a Stradanus engraving (circa 1638)

Vespucci's fourth voyage was another expedition for the Portuguese crown down the eastern coast of Brazil, that set out in May 1503 and returned to Portugal in June 1504. Like his alleged first voyage, Vespucci's last voyage in 1503–1504 is also disputed to have taken place. The only source of information for the last voyage is the Letter to Soderini, but as several modern scholars dispute Vespucci's authorship of the letter to Soderini, it is also sometimes doubted whether Vespucci undertook this trip. However, Portuguese documents do confirm a voyage to Brazil was undertaken in 1503–04 by the captain Gonçalo Coelho, very likely the same captain of the 1501 mapping expedition (Vespucci's third voyage), and so it is quite possible that Vespucci went on board this one as well. However, it is not independently confirmed Vespucci was aboard and there are some difficulties in the reported dates and details.

The letters caused controversy after Vespucci's death, especially among the supporters of Columbus who believed Columbus' priority for the discovery of America was being undermined, and seriously damaged Vespucci's reputation.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amerigo_Vespucci
 
Top