Questions tagged [naval]

Of or pertaining to ships and or the sea, especially military vessels.

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1answer
104 views

How much protection did Fort Warren afford Boston?

Fort Warren (constructed 1833–1861) was built on Georges Island in Boston Harbor, by my understanding to guard what was then the main channel into Boston, marked "Main Shipping Channel" on ...
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63 views

Where from, and in what way, did the first detailed account of the use of self-propelled torpedoes reach the RN and USN?

Three possible candidates seem to exist for the first verified (non-participant) observation of a torpedo boat assault. The options are the Russo-Turkish War, at Caldera Bay, or at Weihaiwei, all of ...
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1answer
146 views

Are there other examples of naval bases being deliberately situated in shallow-water harbours post-1801?

The generic tendency in naval history has been that deeper ports are better as they allow larger ships to dock at the port. The importance of deeper water ports increased rapidly in the 19th century ...
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Is there any evidence of naval ramming in the 9th and 10th century North Sea?

In Bernard Cornwell's 'Sword of the Kings', his main character uses the tactic of ramming to sink an enemy ship before engaging in hand-to-hand combat with surviving ships which get leashed together. ...
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95 views

Did Spain have a strategic plan for its navy in the Spanish–American War?

Admiral Cervera y Topete is cited in many places as having thought that the Spanish couldn't defeat the Americans in war due to the dilapidated state of the Spanish Navy. The position of the Spanish ...
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2answers
180 views

What did the Baltic Fleet do in Reval in 1904 and when was it there?

I noticed, in @Schwern's answer that the 1904-1905 journey of the Baltic Fleet is cited as having started in (modern Tallinn). This doesn't make much sense as to the best of my knowledge Reval/Tallinn ...
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3answers
7k views

In the Battle of the Coral Sea, how could two Japanese scouts grossly mis-identify two American ships?

I've been reading the Wikipedia pages about the Pacific theatre in WW2; in the page describing the battle of the Coral Sea there is the following passage: [...] the scout [from Shōkaku] confirmed ...
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3answers
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What were Helfrich's orders for Doorman in 1942 prior to the Battle of the Java Sea, and did he comment on these in later life?

I've been trying to understand what went in prior to the Japanese invasion of Java. From my understanding thus far, Vice-Admiraal (Vice Admiral) Conrad Helfrich took command of the ABDA naval forces ...
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2answers
2k views

Was there a way for ships to disengage from boarding actions?

I was doing some research about Naval tactics in Age of Sail - especially in boarding tactics. I read several personal diaries, letters and accounts of these battles written by combatants. From ...
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1answer
197 views

What were the typical types of ships used in the Persian Navy in the 1730's and 1740's?

What were the typical types of ships used in the Persian Navy in the 1730's and 1740's? Is the make-up of the fleet known (i.e., how many ships of what class, etc)? The revival of Persia's power in ...
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2answers
126 views

The Sumatrans told Marco Polo that there was an island to the Southeast. Were they referring to Australia? [closed]

In 1292, Marco Polo was waiting for the winds to shift so he could leave Sumatra and return to Venice. He spent his time learning about an island called Java, in the southeast. Everyone said that it ...
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2answers
297 views

Were fighters used as a carrier group defense tactic? [closed]

Okay, i know this is probably a silly question, but were carrier based fighters ever used as a defense during an air attack combined with the use of ship based AA weapons. I mean, i know they probably ...
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1answer
170 views

How were soldiers positioned on a platoon-sized amphibious landing craft in WWII?

Did the military think through who might need to have the highest survival rate as they offloaded onto a defended beach? Were the men with different roles (radio, machine gun, medic, platoon leader, ...
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219 views

How did the Hansa organize river trade in the 14th and 15th centuries?

How did the Hansa accommodate the transition from sea to river trade along a trade route? Would river travel have been controlled by one group of people, e.g., Guild of the River Oder Merchants? Would ...
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1answer
236 views

How did (riverine) toll castles operate?

Toll Castle A toll castle (WP) was a castle built either on a river, lake, or road intended to guard that trade route: Such castles were usually placed at strategic locations, such as border ...
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119 views

What was the typical error with dead reckoning navigation?

Suppose we are trying to navigate with just a compass and lag (dead reckoning, plus some latitude measurements), like people did before they started using chronometers and lunar distances method. What ...
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2answers
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How were horses disembarked from sail ships?

Back in late 18th century, ship of the line embarked soldiers (e.g. royal marines) that can perform land actions. To disembark, they took place into longboats. If a specific land action was planned, ...
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Why were Royal Navy ships forbidden to attack the ARA Veinticinco de Mayo in Argentinian waters?

I watched this video on the British hunt for the Argentinian aircraft carrier ARA Veinticinco de Mayo, during the Falklands war. Involved, among other ships, was the Royal Navy nuclear submarine HMS ...
3
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1answer
132 views

How long would it take to sail from New Orleans to Belize in late Summer 1867?

I’m writing a story where the characters need to travel by sea from New Orleans to Belize. The event takes place in late Summer 1867. I need to figure out the following: What route they would take ...
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3k views

Was the de Havilland Mosquito ever deployed on an aircraft carrier?

The de Havilland Mosquito was a highly versatile aircraft of World War II, designed as a light bomber, but also used as a fighter, torpedo bomber and reconnaissance aircraft among other things. The ...
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162 views

How did U-boats enter and exit the submarine pens at Brest?

I was reading about the Brest submarine pen/bunker complex and looking at pictures of it. I was even able to locate a set of blueprints of the base here. But because of the poor quality of the image ...
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1answer
207 views

What can we deduce about the expected career of a US Navy “lifer” in 1972?

In 1972, a member of the U.S. Navy who's already accumulated several years of service mentions that he's expecting to spend his entire working life in the USN. What does that imply about his ...
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1answer
225 views

Who or what were the Nassadista?

I have encountered several references to Nassadista in a 16th century Latin manuscript. As far as I can tell the noun is masculine, first declension (nominative plural Nassadistæ). Context implies ...
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1answer
143 views

How do we know the tonnages U-boats sank?

In the videogame series, Silent Hunter, which simulates being a submarine captain in WW2, after a patrol you are told how much tonnage you sank. I always thought that was just a reward mechanism to ...
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1answer
314 views

Did the Soviet ever attempt “innocent passage” thru American waters?

In 1986 and 1988, the US Navy sent warships into Soviet Crimean Sea territorial waters as exercises of innocent passage (which essentially means that you can sail through an unfriendly nation's waters ...
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When did humans develop the ability to sail any direction regardless of wind direction?

When did humans develop the sail technology and skills to be able to use the wind to sail in any direction, including using techniques such as beating to effectively sail into the wind? I checked ...
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4answers
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Were armed merchantmen effective against submarines?

The armed merchantman Jervis Bay was no match for the German pocket battleship Admiral Scheer in a ship to ship duel. Nevertheless, the merchantman put up a brave fight lasting over an hour, allowing ...
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862 views

What do we know about the squadron that evacuated Moore's force after Corunna?

Upon being appointed commander of British forces in Iberia, and Napoleon's subsequent invasion with Le Grande Armee, Sir John Moore's retreated to a defensive position near the port of Corunna, in ...
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110 views

Where can I find an official record of names and service dates for commanding officers of former US Navy vessels?

I'm particularly interested in records for the Indiana-class pre-dreadnought battleship named USS Massachusetts (BB-2). Can this information be found online?
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Why didn't the British consider the USS President's attempted flight as a fake surrender?

In the War of 1812, the USS President was captured by the Royal Navy. Wikipedia gives the final actions of the day: President ceased fire at 7:58 pm and hoisted a light in her rigging, indicating ...
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1answer
256 views

Did Empress Cixi divert funds for the Beiyang Fleet to build the Summer Palace?

There is a popular story that Empress Dowager Cixi diverted funds originally intended for the Beiyang Fleet in order to upgrade the Summer Palace. This is significant because the amount - approx. 22 ...
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2answers
278 views

Which juridical reasons led the Netherlands to lose control of the seas?

It has always been my understanding that the Netherlands lost control of the seas because of land wars against France, especially Louis XIV, and because of the difficulties involved in holding ...
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1answer
377 views

How many ships did the fleet of the Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie (VOC) possess at its peak (around 1670)?

The Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie (1602–1800) was a huge Dutch company primarily earning lots of revenue in the spice trade among other activities. For this work they needed a lot of ships from ...
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1answer
4k views

Did the Americans trade destroyers in the “destroyer deal” that they would later need themselves?

In the fall of 1940, the U.S. and Great Britain made the so-called "destroyer deal," of 50 old American destroyers in exchange for the use of British bases ranging from Newfoundland to the Caribbean. ...
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1answer
202 views

Is there a historical example or a manuscript about troop formation or fighting stance on a boat?

Is there a historical example or a manuscript about troop formation or fighting stance on any sort of boat or ship? Especially during colonialism or the golden age of piracy, no specific location so ...
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2answers
519 views

Communication lag during the Age of Sail: what if enemy claimed that peace agreement was signed?

In the past due to the communication lag the hostilities could proceed long after peace agreements were signed. This was especially severe for the overseas territories and ships. I'm somewhat more ...
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1answer
236 views

What was the name of the torpedo boat with mechanical problems accompanying the Wilhelm Gustloff?

The Wilhelm Gustloff was a German cruise ship that was used as part as a means of evacuating refugees from Gotenhafen (today Gdynia) in January 1945. The Wikipedia article reads: The ship left ...
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2answers
194 views

Where can I find data on the amount of fuel carried by WWII Warships and what their operational ranges were?

I am looking for a fairly comprehensive source where can I find data on the amount of fuel carried by WWII Warships and what their operational ranges were? I mean, I want to look up this information ...
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4answers
10k views

How did passengers keep warm on sail ships?

Trans-Atlantic passenger travel was not very popular until the advent of the steamer, and yet men and women crossed the ocean periodically, including the affluent. From what I've been able to gather,...
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1answer
329 views

Why were some Napoleonic battles fought at sea?

'The Royal Navy 1793-1815' is all about the different battles that took place in the water'...my main concern is why the navy was involved at all? why couldn't they just fight in the land ? Is it ...
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101 views

What is the source of the story from the Battle of the Nile?

Here is a creepy story from history. As I remember the story, after The Battle of the Nile 1 August 1798 or the Battle of Trafalger 21 October 1805 someone on a British ship saw a boy sitting on a ...
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4k views

Did USS Buck (DD-761) send the message “Temper, Temper”?

In a March 26, 2019 Reddit post with 1.1k upvotes, there is a picture with a story as follows (emphasis added). 15 Mar 1952: The Wisconsin receives her first direct hit in her history when one of ...
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1answer
312 views

How long did it take US fleet submarines during World War 2 to charge their batteries?

How long did it take a US fleet submarine running on the surface to recharge its battery fully for maximum duration submergence? I realize that the answer depends on how many engines were being used ...
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0answers
237 views

Trying to identify what military service, war and rank by the uniform

I have been searching google images, tried a reverse search and found nothing. I have looked on many sites and cannot identify the service. I do know he has 9 buttons on his coat, 3 on the cuffs, red ...
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1answer
540 views

Have any artifacts or archaeological remains from the White Ship disaster of 1120 ever been recovered?

After the White Ship disaster, which claimed the lives of all on board (except one), including William Adeline, the heir to the English throne, England was plunged into a civil war known as the ...
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2answers
277 views

How did the design of the hull differ between an Indiaman and a frigate?

Indiamen and frigates look similar. The Indiaman seems a little bigger, but both are similar in the following ways: full rigged design for overseas operation (able to cross oceans) armed As indiamen ...
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4answers
339 views

Had any 20th century navies used damage-control specialized vessels in battle fleets?

A followup or extension of this question: Was the tugboat ever part of a WWII battle group? Was there ever a ship in a modern navy specially equipped or converted so that it could keep pace with ...
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6answers
7k views

Was the tugboat ever part of a WWII battle group?

It would seem a pretty logical addition to a WWII battle group to have one of more tugs for the capital ships (heck, any ship), yet I don't see much evidence of that. Let me elaborate. I was an Army ...
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1answer
3k views

Did firing trials of pre-WW1 British dreadnoughts involve actually firing at them?

On the Wikipedia page of HMS Dreadnought it is mentioned that during firing trials against HMS Hero there were some vulnerabilities of its fire control systems revealed: namely, wiring and voice tubes ...
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1answer
2k views

Why is the name “Tecumseh” used for US Navy ships?

It is common practice to name warships after historical heroes of a nation. The US Navy had four vessel named USS Tecumseh Two of them were tugboats, but the other two were a then-cutting-edge ...

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