Age of Sail Naval Non-Fiction Section



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AOS Naval Non Fiction - General

General Non-Fiction books about the Navies of the world during the Age of Sail.

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Author :: William Clark Russell
First Published by :: Samspons, Low
Place :: London
Format :: HC
Date :: 1889

Betwixt The Forelands"The naval history of the English Channel from the Middle Ages onwards. At its narrowest, this strait between the English and French coasts is only some twenty miles wide, and domination of it was always a key objective of British naval policy. It was – and is – one of the busiest commercial waterways in the world, offering access to Northern Europe from the Central Atlantic. Clark Russell’s book highlights the fact that, though Britannia might rule the waves and dominate the Channel, the prize of rich commercial pickings was always an inducement for French privateers in light craft to dart out, seize their prizes and retire quickly to the cover of their well-defended home ports."

Antoine Vanner: Author of the Dawlish Chronicles

Author :: Janet MacDonald
First Published by :: Boydell Press
Format :: HC
Date :: 15 July 2010
ISBN-10 :: 1843835533
ISBN-13 :: 9781843835530

During the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, the Royal Navy increased its manpower from fewer than 20,000 to more than 147,000 men, with a concomitant increase in the quantities of food and drink required to sustain them. The organisation responsible for this, the Victualling Board, performed its tasks using techniques and systems which it had developed over the previous 110 years. In terms of actually delivering supplies to warships, troopships and army garrisons abroad, the Victualling Board performed well given the constraints of long-distance communications and intermittent difficulties in obtaining supplies. However, its other areas of responsibility showed poor performance, as evidenced by the reports of several Parliamentary enquiries. This book examines in detail the processes by which the Victualling Board performed its core and non-core tasks, identifying the areas of competence and incompetence, and establishing the underlying causes of the incompetencies.

The British Navy's Victualling Board 1793-1815: Management Competence and Incompetence

Author :: Roger Crowley
First Published by :: Faber and Faber
Format :: HC
Date :: 4 August 2011
ISBN-10 :: 0571245943
ISBN-13 :: 9780571245949

A magisterial work of gripping history, City of Fortune tells the story of the Venetian ascent from lagoon dwellers to the greatest power in the Mediterranean - an epic five hundred year voyage that encompassed crusade and trade, plague, sea battles and colonial adventure.

In Venice, the path to empire unfolded in a series of extraordinary contests - the sacking of Constantinople in 1204, the fight to the finish with Genoa and a desperate defence against the Turks. Under the lion banner of St Mark, she created an empire of ports and naval bases which funnelled the goods of the world through its wharfs. In the process the city became the richest place on earth - a brilliant mosaic fashioned from what it bought, traded, borrowed and stole.

Based on first hand accounts of trade and warfare, seafaring and piracy and the places where Venetians sailed and died, City of Fortune is narrative history at its finest. Beginning on Ascension Day in the year 1000 and ending with an explosion off the coast of Greece - and the calamitous news that the Portuguese had pioneered a sea route to India - it will fascinate anyone who loves Venice and the Mediterranean world.

City of Fortune: How Venice Won and Lost a Naval Empire

Author: Roger Crowley

Title: City of Fortune: How Venice Won and Lost a Naval Empire

Series: n/a

First Published by: Faber and Faber


Format: HC

Date: 4 August 2011

ISBN-10: 0571245943

ISBN-13: 9780571245949



Author :: Steven Park
Series :: Journal of the American Revolution Books
First Published by :: Westholme Publishing
Format :: HC
Date :: 4 November 2016
ISBN-10 :: 1594162670
ISBN-13 :: 9781594162671

Considered one of the first acts of rebellion to British authority over the American colonies, a fresh account placing the incident into historical context.

Between the Boston Massacre in 1770 and the Boston Tea Party in 1773—a period historians refer to as “the lull”—a group of prominent Rhode Islanders rowed out to His Majesty’s schooner Gaspee,which had run aground six miles south of Providence while on an anti-smuggling patrol. After threatening and shooting its commanding officer, the raiders looted the vessel and burned it to the waterline. Despite colony-wide sympathy for the June 1772 raid, neither the government in Providence nor authorities in London could let this pass without a response. As a result, a Royal Commission of Inquiry headed by Rhode Island governor Joseph Wanton zealously investigated the incident.

In The Burning of His Majesty’s Schooner Gaspee: An Attack on Crown Rule Before the American Revolution, historian Steven Park reveals that what started out as a customs battle over the seizure of a prominent citizen’s rum was soon transformed into the spark that re-ignited Patriot fervor. The significance of the raid was underscored by a fiery Thanksgiving Day sermon given by a little-known Baptist minister in Boston. His inflammatory message was reprinted in several colonies and was one of the most successful pamphlets of the pre-Independence period. The commission turned out to be essentially a sham and made the administration in London look weak and ineffective. In the wake of the Gaspee affair, Committees of Correspondence soon formed in all but one of the original thirteen colonies, and later East India Company tea would be defiantly dumped into Boston Harbor.

The Burning of His Majesty's Schooner Gaspee

Author :: Helen Watt & Anne Hawkins
First Published by :: Boydell Press
Format :: HC
Date :: 18 September 2014
ISBN-10 :: 1843838966
ISBN-13 :: 9781843838968

Letters of seamen below the rank of commissioned officer are rare, both in original form and in print. This edited collection of 130 letters, written by seamen in the British Navy and their correspondents between 1793 and 1815, gives voice to a group of some 142,000 men, whose lives and thoughts are otherwise mostly unknown.

The letters are extremely valuable for the insights which they give into aspects of life below decks and the subjects close to the writers' hearts: money matters, ties with home and homesickness. They also provide eye-witness accounts of events during a tumultuous and important period of British and European history. One large group of letters, included as a separate section, comprises the letters of seamen and their family and friends which were intercepted by the authorities during the mutinies of 1797. These letters shed a great deal of light on the extraordinary events of that year and of seamen's attitudes to the mutinies. The editors' introductory material, besides highlighting what the letters tell us about seamen's lives and attitudes, also discusses the extent of literacy amongst seamen, setting this into its wider contemporary popular context. The letters are supported by a substantial editorial apparatus and two detailed appendices containing biographies of seamen and information on their ships.

Letters of Seamen in the Wars with France 1793-1815

Author :: John D. Grainger
First Published by :: Pen & Sword
Format :: HC
Date :: 27 July 2016
ISBN-10 :: 1473877245
ISBN-13 :: 9781473877245
John D Grainger charts the careers of the thirteen vessels that have served the Royal Navy under the name HMS Shark. Despite the ferocious name, they have all been relatively small vessels including one brigantine, five sloops, one Sixth Rate, a gunvessel, four destroyers and a submarine. Collectively they therefore give a good representation of the various roles of these types, which receive far less attention than larger, more glamorous ships. Furthermore, as the first entered service in 1699 and the last was sunk in 1944 (having the dubious distinction of being the only Allied vessel lost on D-Day), they illustrate the changes and continuities in the Royal Navy and war at sea across almost 250 years. In each case the author considers the origin of the ship, the purpose for which it was designed and employed, its captains and where possible its crew, as well as the activities of the ship itself and its final fate; in addition background information of a general nature is included as a necessary context for those actions. 13 Sharks

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