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Ships of the American Revolutionary Navy (New Vanguard) Paperback – November 24, 2009
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“This volume by Osprey has 48 pages and provides an excellent overview the design and development, the operational history, and the ships of the Continental Navy... I highly recommend this volume to anyone interested in the American Revolution, wooden wind-powered warships, or the history of the US Navy.” ―Jeff Leiby, IPMS (January 2010)
“Other recommendations for specialty military history collections include... Mark Lardas' Ships of the American Revolutionary Navy, telling of warships during the years 1776-83 who formed the first navy of the US.” ―The Bookwatch (January 2010)
“In this volume, author Mark Lardas looks at the design and the development of ships built in the US as well as those purchased or converted. We also see how these ships performed in battle with many now-famous captains, ships and events. The book then goes into a look of each of the classes of ships built and each of the three major types is provided a section. This is superbly illustrated by Tony Bryan and includes cut-away illustrations of several types. An inclusion of period art work and illustrations also helps us to see what these ships looked like. An excellent book on a most interesting subject and one that I am positive you will find to be of interest. One that will be pulled from the shelves time after time and one I can highly recommend to you.” ―Scott Van Aken, Modeling Madness, modelingmadness.com (December 2009)
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The author begins with a discussion of warship building in the American colonies, which were already building frigate-size vessels for the Royal Navy even before the Revolution. Herein the author provides several useful observations about American shipbuilding: American-built vessels were optimized for speed and were generally larger than similar European-built ships, but colonial vessels were often only built to last a decade or so. Once the Revolution broke out, Congress authorized the conversion of merchant vessels into warships but these ships were not sturdy enough to mount many guns or take substantial damage. In December 1775 Congress ambitiously authorized the construction of 13 frigates in American yards, although it took many years for most of these vessels to be completed. The author also notes the difficulty the infant U.S. Navy had in acquiring adequate cannons for these warships and the necessity to go to sea with mixed armament.Read more ›
For a brand new country with an uncertain financial footing, a Navy is an expensive proposition. Nonetheless, the Congress decided that it was important to have a naval presence as a part of the war for independence. The end result was decidedly mixed. Some proposed ships were never built; others were but did not function well; still others made contributions in the revolutionary struggle.
This book proceeds as follows: It begins with the design and development of a navy. Sections examine shipbuilding in America, purchased ships from other countries, the desire to build 13 frigates, and a listing of ships authorized in 1776 and 1777.
Then, an operational history, showing the evolving navy in action. A key factor, of course, is when the French entered the war. Suddenly, the colonies had a major navy fighting on their side, transforming the Congress' strategy with respect to a navy.
What about the ships? I listing of ships authorized and built in the US (not counting ships manufactured elsewhere and purchased by the US) run from sloops-of-war (e.g., Ranger) to frigates (e.g., Randolph, Hancock, Warren, and Boston, among others) to a ship-of-the-line (America, which never saw service in the American navy--and was poorly manufactured anyway).
If you want a brief introduction to the Revolutionary American Navy, this is a good resource. . . .
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Osprey practically holds the patent on nicely illustrated nuts-and-bolts military history, and this 48-page work (their standard size) is well up to standard. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Michael K. Smith