Big Fleet Actions: Tsushima, Jutland, Philippine Sea by ERIC GROVE


By means of assessing 3 of the biggest and so much decisive significant fleet activities - Tsushima, Jutland and the Philippine Sea - this article exhibits how this manner of naval conflict has developed via eras that have introduced new weaponry and firepower, more advantageous verbal exchange and aerial aid.

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James Forbes had left Liverpool in 1855 at his peak: newly married, wealthy and in command of the Schomberg, the largest and finest sailing ship ever built in Britain to date. He was commodore of the famous Black Ball Line of passenger ships and one of the most respected captains in the world. A little more than six months later, on the morning of 4 January 1856, all of his fame and achievements had turned to dust. The Schomberg had just been wrecked off the Melbourne coast and even as Forbes sat in one of the town’s better appointed hotels awaiting orders from the owner, his former passengers were holding a meeting with the express intention of destroying the reputation of their famous captain.

A view of San Francisco as it was in the early days of the gold rush. Although the town is still a tiny, ramshackle affair, the harbour is already crowded with ships, many abandoned and left to rot. As tales of the Challenge spread around town, hysteria started to set in, not helped by an article in the California Courier that read: ‘The ship Challenge has arrived and Capt Waterman, her commander has also – but where are nine of her crew? And where is he and his guilty mate? The accounts given of Waterman towards his men, if true, make him one of the most inhumane monsters of this age.

All that this book seeks to do, both through the pictures and text, is to celebrate the skill and tenacity of the men who handled these ships, enjoy the remarkable beauty of the vessels themselves and cherish the rarity of what they symbolise; something we humans have created that is in harmony with nature rather than at odds with it. CHAPTER ONE THE ORIGINS OF CLIPPER SHIPS The philanthropist William Morris once said that there could be no true beauty without purpose. His words seem to encapsulate something that lay at the very heart of the clipper ship era.

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