Archive for the ‘Naval History’ Category

Writings of Admiral Samuel Hood

October 11, 2017

Admiral Hood had a long and distinguished career in the Royal Navy, but few of his writings are publicly available. His autobiography (including some correspondence) is contained on pages 1-37 of volume 17 of the Naval Chronicle, and there was an edition of his letters – Letters written by Sir Samuel Hood (Viscount Hood) in 1781-2-3, illustrated by extracts from logs and public records – published in 1895. In addition, scattered official letters from earlier times can be found in Letters to the ministry, from Governor Bernard, General Gage, and Commodore Hood (1769).

However, a new major project – Georgian Papers Online – has uncovered many more letters by this worthy. Identified as Letters from Rear-Adm. Sir Samuel (later Lord) Hood to General Jacob de Budé, including some copies of related correspondence to and from Hood, this source contains writings to and from Hood that have never been available before. While the documents themselves are in various hands, the full descriptions of each letter, as well as transcriptions in some cases, allow the reader to fully appreciate these missives.

 

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History of the German Navy, 1848 to 2016

October 4, 2017

In the most recent issue of Naval War College Review, you will find German Navies from 1848 to 2016.

U.S. Coast Guard’s Need for New Cutters

September 27, 2017

That the Coast Guard has an aging fleet is not to be denied; a unique needs cutter built in 1944 was taken out of service in 2011. A history of the procurement of cutters, funding, and Congressional options are all explained in this recent CRS report – Coast Guard Cutter Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress. And this at a time when the Coast Guard, for the second year in a row, has interdicted a record amount of cocaine.

 

“The Explosion of the Spanish Battleship during the Battle of Gibraltar”

September 13, 2017

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This remarkable painting memorializes the Dutch victory over the Spanish fleet in 1607; the entire Spanish fleet engaged in the battle was destroyed along with 2,000 – 4,000 men. Details of this painting can be seen in a series of pictures found here.

The First Pacific Voyages

September 6, 2017

This 1990 monograph – Background To Discovery: Pacific Exploration from Dampier to Cook – explores the first English and French incursions into the area. Editor Derek Howse has assembled a first-rate team of authors to tell the tales of that era, supplemented by informative notes and explanations.

Histories of the U.S. Marine Corps

August 30, 2017

This site contains numerous online publications ranging from general histories to unit histories to bibliographies, and finding aids. Whole sections are devoted to either individual conflicts or time periods. The occasional primary source, such as journals, do make an appearance.

“[U.S.] Marines in the Frigate Navy”

August 23, 2017

This series of fourteen 4-color prints show the life of the Marine Corps from 1798 to 1835. Each poster comes with a page explaining the historical significance of the event. Compare this to The Marines in the Revolution: A Pictorial History.

Commerce Raiding

August 18, 2017

There is surprisingly little written on this topic outside of selected monographs on certain ships. To partially remedy this lacuna in the historical record, Commerce Raiding: Historical Case Studies, 1755-2009 was published. As the introduction states: “As a military tactic, commerce raiding has time after time proved itself a most efficient way to exert pressure on an opponent. A few scholars have placed these events in their social, political, and naval contexts, but their studies have been the exception, not the rule. For this reason, this collection should fill a major gap in the academic literature.”(1) A select bibliography adds to the usefulness of this work.

 

U.S. Naval Strategies in the Late 1900s

August 16, 2017

Here are some relevant documents from the Newport Papers series:  U.S. Naval Strategy in the 1970s: Selected Documents; U.S. Naval Strategy in the 1980s: Selected Documents; and U.S. Naval Strategy in the 1990s: Selected Documents.

USS Constitution Refloated in Boston Harbor

July 24, 2017

After two years of re-furbishment, the USS Constitution is once again afloat. Various videos are available. Primary sources on this, the world’s oldest commissioned warship, can be found in The Naval War of 1812: A Documentary History (3 vols., 1985-2002) and Naval Documents related to the United States Wars with the Barbary Powers (6 vols., 1939-44).