Questions tagged [naval]

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

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10
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2answers
2k views

If a merchant ship captain joined the Royal Navy during the age of sail, would they be put in command?

If the captain/former captain of a merchant ship joined the navy or was press ganged into the the navy would they be put in command of a ship or would they have to work they way up through the ranks? ...
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1answer
867 views

When was the first intentional ricochet fired from a naval artillery?

Wikipedia states that the first ricochet firing was performed in 1688. This other website says it may have existed in 1587. All those historical events are for cannonballs fired from the ground ...
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1answer
199 views

What were common crew ranks on US Navy flying boats and bombers?

historians! I asked this question over on the Aviation SE, but was also suggested to ask here. Below is a copy of my question from over there. I have been trying to figure this out for some time, but ...
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1answer
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Did any of the Flying Tigers lead a US Navy squadron?

I came across a couple of passages on the Flying Tigers, mercenary armies and famous volunteers I saw how one pilot became an ace in Europe and another became a General in the 10th Air Force after ...
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Why did the US Navy and Marine Corps use satanic symbolism in WW2?

When you look at certain names and symbols used by the U.S. Navy (USN) and the U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) during WW2, you could see they are heavily loaded with satanic symbols. You have the F6F Hellcat ...
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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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Why were British ships not of the same quality as French and Spanish ships until the latter part of the 18th century?

In Patrick O'Brian's 'Men-of-War', it says (apparently referring to around the time the Victory was built [1759-65]), ...most of the British ships were not nearly so well built as the French or the ...
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How many times has inclement weather foiled attempts to navally invade the UK? [closed]

Inclusive of situations where inclement or unseasonable weather delayed the ability to set sail long enough that British ships/fleets were able to foil the plan by direct actions, how many times has ...
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769 views

Why did Britain object to the Ottomans bringing its ships-of-the-line against Russia in the beginning of the Crimean War?

I came across this in the "Background section" of Wikipedia article Battle of Sinop. Fighting at sea between Imperial Russia and the Ottoman Empire had been going on for weeks, and the Ottomans ...
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987 views

Evolution of destroyers

This is a question about evolution of weapons technology. Destroyer is a class of ships which exists already for more than a century. One of its main characteristics is speed (these are generally the ...
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Which Soviet submarine was HMS Splendid tracking on 30th March 1982?

In 'Vulcan 607', R. White describes the background of the submarines that headed to the Falkland Islands. For the HMS Splendid, he notes that the submarine, under CO Lane-Nott was engaged in a mission ...
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1answer
213 views

How were ship kills accounted in WWII?

In the movie Greyhound, at the end, the fleet requests an oral report of the incidents in which the captain says "My escort group sank three others...". But in the movie it is seen that ...
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Which US naval ship from 1905 is depicted on this photo?

I found this photo in a relatives old photo collection. Most of the photos were taken around 1905 so I assume the ship photo was taken around that time. A lot of the photos were taken in upstate NY ...
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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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What impact does colonial legacy have on current US presence in the South China Sea dispute?

In recent years, the South China Sea has become somewhat important from a geo-political standpoint. China is building military bases, among many other things, and the US has been speaking about ...
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1answer
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Why was a small vessel tied to the deck of the USS Oriskany during scuttling?

The final fate of the USS Oriskany (CV-34) is that it was scuttled as an artificial reef in the Gulf of Mexico. It's a fairly famous dive site. There are photos of the ship as it sank taken by the ...
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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 ...
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109 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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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
148 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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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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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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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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What made the Russian Navy suspect Japanese torpedo boats were in North Sea in 1904?

I'm finding several references that during the Russia - Japanese war of 1904/1905 that the Russians had intelligence that suggested the Japanese either had torpedo boats present in the North Sea or ...
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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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Why were ships-of-the line not supposed to open fire on frigates during fleet actions?

Found this passage in the book Patrick O'Brian's Navy (p. 57) In the era of fighting sail there was an unspoken convention that line-of-battle ships did not fire on frigates during any fleet action ...
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1answer
208 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
281 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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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
245 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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What was the longest a World War II submarine stayed at sea without being resupplied at a port?

The US Balao-class and Gato-class submarines had enough provisions to stay on patrol for 75 days under normal operating conditions. Information on other long-range submarines has proved hard to find, ...
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Why did Xerxes need a canal across Mount Athos peninsula?

As a preparation to his invasion of Greece, Xerxes ordered to dig a canal across Mount Athos peninsula. Digging this canal took 3 years. When I look at the map I see that this peninsula is a part of ...
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1answer
117 views

Did English/British merchant sailors receive written testimonials between 1500 and 1750?

I seem to remember reading that at the end of a voyage a sailor got a conduct report written by the captain along with his pay. These testimonials were then valuable in getting him his next job. It ...
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132 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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1answer
228 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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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
178 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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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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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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Why were Japanese submarines not able to defend in the Battle of the Philippine Sea?

During the Battle of the Philippine Sea, the Japanese lost 2 fleet carriers due to actions by American submarines. Why were the Japanese not able to defend against such attacks, and why were the ...
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2answers
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Why is the nuclear powered USS Nautilus (SSN-571) a museum, when nuclear aircraft carriers are not converted to museums?

My understanding is that the USS Nautilus, the first nuclear submarine is now a museum. This boat was a real nuclear vessel, so it should have all the hazards associated with a decommissioned nuclear ...
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Was PepsiCo really sixth largest military force?

There are several claims on the internet that for a brief time PepsiCo owned the sixth largest military force in the world. You can read about it, e.g., at Wikipedia. This seems quite fishy to me, so ...
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Has a hostile submarine transitted the Bosphorus submerged?

In WW1, the British submarine E-11 entered the Golden Horn, but apparently not the Bosphorus, and in this old thread on Usenet there are references to WW1 and fiction. According to a recent article ...
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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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Would a WW2 submarine have any way to fake death, how, and would it be useful?

I would like to know if there were any ways for WW2 submarine to fake death/explosion/wreckage in the event where they are spotted and attacked from beyond. Would this require specific tools ? Like ...
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Why did navies abandon armour?

Over the Cold War the many navies of the world moved away from significantly armoring their ships besides splinter protection for some vital spaces, with a few exceptions. What prompted the shift from ...
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Has the U.S. Navy ever commissioned the building of a warship overseas?

Many foreign navies have commissioned foreign shipyards to build warships and submarines for them. Most recently, Russia purchased to amphibious dock landing ships from France (that sale is currently ...
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6answers
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Why did the British have so few destroyers going into World War II?

In September, 1940, Britain traded a number of its New World naval base sites for 50 "overaged' (old) destroyers in the so-called "Destroyer Deal." That doesn't seem like a large number of destroyers, ...
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1answer
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What was the size of the British East India fleet at the end of the War of 1812?

There was a recent quote from the television show Taboo, set in 1814, that "The British East India Company has more ships than the combined fleets of all the nations of the world" I know that ...
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How much did a ship cost in Ancient Greece?

I'm exploring the history of the Peloponnesian War and I was wondering how much money a trireme cost and how long it took on average to build such a ship.

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