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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fine companion to Howard Chapelle's classic work, January 3, 2003
By 
Bruce Trinque (Amston, CT United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Sailing Warships of the U.S. Navy (Hardcover)
In his preface to "Sailing Warships of the US Navy" author Donald Canney pays tribute to Howard Chapelle's "The History of the American Sailing Navy", but also notes the limitations of that classic work in its failure to meet the standards of modern historical research by inadequately documenting source citations and, sometimes, in poorly evaluating primary sources. Canney explains that he does not seek to replace, but to complement Chapelle's book with its meticulously executed ships' plans. And Canney well succeeds in this goal.
All of the ships built for the American navy before the era of steam are covered, most of them in considerable detail, showing the original lines plans where available (it should be noted that due to the age and physical condition of these plans, some lack clear detail). These are supplemented by paintings and, especially for the vessels built after the early 19th Century, photographs. Special attention is given to design and construction considerations, although the full career and ultimate fate of each vessel are summarized. Furthermore, in the course of discussing the individual ships, Canney develops a more general history of design trends and employment.
While Paul Silverstone's "The Sailing Navy, 1775-1854" is a useful quick reference to the ships of this era, Canney's book provides a much greater in-depth look. "Sailing Warships of the US Navy" does not mean that Chapelle's history is obsolete, but you should make a space on the bookshelf next to it for Canney's volume. This is a book which is truly a "must have" for anyone interested in the US Navy during the Age of Sail.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars United States had ships-of-the-line, November 19, 2002
By 
Requin (montreal, Quebec Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Sailing Warships of the U.S. Navy (Hardcover)
We all know the frigate Constitution, but what about other US sailing warships? This book answers it all. I bought it especially for the chapter on ships-of-the-line, although the section is not as big as i would have liked, it was the first time i read accounts of these big ships that never saw action. Every ship has a litte history on it.
Missing are the steam warships which are covered in another book by the same author. Only reserve is the focus on seeking the primary source of information, which maybe a noble goal but may leave out some valuable secondary information that we may have liked to see anyway. There are still great pictures, though.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Book- horrible service, March 3, 2008
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This review is from: Sailing Warships of the U.S. Navy (Hardcover)
This is a great reference book for naval history buffs. I bought it as a companion to Ian Toll's "Six Frigates". The many reproduced artworks and line drawings give the reader a clear picture of not just what our frigates looked liked, but also the lesser known 74's, brigs, and sloops.
Unfortunately, Amazon's service was a disaster. The first "new" copy that I ordered from Amazon was damaged (ripped dustjacket) so I returned it and asked for a replacement. The replacement was so poorly packaged that it arrived in worse shape than the first copy. I returned it and wound up buying a clean, used copy from an independent online bookseller.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another great read, March 12, 2007
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This review is from: Sailing Warships of the U.S. Navy (Hardcover)
I am always fascinated by historical importance of ships and how far they've come. This book gives a great historical perspective, but is a little narrow in its scope since it only covers naval ships. I recommend checking out Sailing Ships of New England by George Francis Dow. It has recently been reprinted and is full of wonderful illustrations of the kinds of ships us civilians used to sail.
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Sailing Warships of the U.S. Navy
Sailing Warships of the U.S. Navy by Donald L. Canney (Hardcover - March 1, 2002)
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