The Arrival of the Naval Mine From the mid-19th Century onwards the naval mine developed into the general from we know today and which was to play a significant role in the American Civil War, the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05, both World Wars and the Iran-Iraq War of 1980-88. The famous order by Admiral [...]
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So far Antoine Vanner has created 294 blog entries.
The Dutch East Indies Ulcer – the Aceh Wars begin 1873-74 The history of the Netherlands in the 19th Century is a closed book for most non-Dutch, not least because of the incorrect perception that “little happened” and as the country was at peace in Europe from 1831 to 1940. The Netherlands were however involved [...]
The Vega Expedition and the North-East Passage 1878-79 In a recent blog, I described the disastrous American Jeanette expedition of 1878/81 – an attempt to reach the North Pole by sea after entering the Arctic via the Bering Strait. (Click here to read it if you missed it previously). The venture was all but [...]
Captain Trollope and the Carronades – Part 2 Henry Trollope In Part1 of this article (Click here to read it if you missed it) we met the “carronade crazy” Royal Navy officer Henry Trollope (1756-1839). His career was a distinguished one – he rose to full Admiral – but his long-term [...]
Captain Trollope and the Carronades – Part 1 Carronade on slide mount Carronades – large-calibre, short-range cannon throwing very heavy shot – were a game-changing weapon when introduced in the 1780s (Click here for the article “HMS Flora 1780: the Carronade's arrival”). Their light weight allowed them to be mounted on smaller [...]
France's Farfadet Submarine Disaster 1905 Courage of the highest order was demanded of the officers and men of the navies that first employed submarines in the early twentieth centuries. Designs were still experimental and operating experience limited, so that every dive was an adventure. Accidents were frequent – and usually fatal when they did [...]
War at Sea 1917: An Ominous New Year’s Day 1917 was to mark a turning point not just in World War 1, but in world history, for it saw not only the outbreak of the Russian Revolution and the birth of the Soviet state, but the entry of the United States into the conflict [...]
The families left behind by the merchant seamen of the 1870s A separate article, about working conditions in merchant shipping in the 1870s (Click here to read it), refers to the work done by the great maritime reformer Samuel Plimsoll (1824-1898) who worked tirelessly to combat the practices of over-insuring decrepit ships that were likely [...]
Unequal Duel, 1758: HMS Monmouth vs. Foudroyant Admiral Byng The execution by firing squad in 1757 of Admiral John Byng (1704-1757) on the quarterdeck of HMS Monarch in 1757 is perhaps best remembered by Voltaire’s verdict in his novel Candide: “In this country, it [...]
HMS Pulteney and the Spanish Xebecs, 1743 There have been many blogs on this site dealing with actions in the Age of Fighting Sail that involved only a few vessels, in many cases two only. In most cases, skilful manoeuvring and sail management, taking full advantage of wind and sea conditions, were key factors [...]