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Naval History

  • Civil War Times Magazine

    Hell in the Harbor

    Accurate Rebel ‘shot and shell’ terrified Fort Sumter’s garrison. Charleston Harbor, April 1861: Three hours before dawn, a single shell announced the war’s beginning. Suddenly something flashed and boomed ashore. In Fort Sumter...

  • World War II Magazine

    WWII Today- February 2011

    Merciful Lie? Convicted War Criminal May Have Saved Allied Lives It was a meeting that may well have changed the course of the war— although not in the way historians have long assumed. Victory seemed to be slipping away from the Germans...

  • World War II Magazine

    WWII Model Review: Yukikaze

    Japan’s Yukikaze Destroyer The commissioned in 1940, saw action in Yukikaze, a Kagero-class destroyer most of the big battles in the Pacific War. In December 1941, it supported Japanese landings at Luzon. The ship screened troop landings...

  • World War II Magazine

    Red Ramage’s Wild Ride

    An American sub skipper chases an elusive Japanese convoy—and finds unparalleled glory. The commanding officer was hopping back and forth between the lookouts on the radar screen in the conning tower, and the plot table in the...

  • World War II Magazine

    Clean Sweep: A Mine Sweeper’s Journey

    After the war ended, the war against underwater mines went on. One sailor’s story. On paper, in August 1945, and nearly every serviceman wanted to go home. For me and others serving on minesweepers, the war was over the end seemed...

  • MHQ Magazine

    Sea Change- Reinvention of the U.S. Navy

    How the U.S. Navy reinvented itself— and its sailors—during a century of radical change in technology and warfare. Navies, at first sight, appear to be highly traditional, even reactionary, organizations. The 21st-century U.S. Navy...

  • MHQ Magazine

    Catch Me If You Can

    How a crafty German admiral led the Royal Navy on a wild chase across the Mediterranean and changed the balance of power in the First World War. Almost a year into World War I, American diplomat Lewis Einstein met Wilhelm Souchon, a rear...

  • MHQ Magazine

    The Fireball at Zonchio

    A ferocious battle with the Turks marked the end of Venice’s sea power. On October 31, 1498, a Venetian merchant, Andrea Gritti, wrote home from the Ottoman capital of Constantinople: “I can’t tell you more about business and...

  • MHQ Magazine

    Experience: Life on an Ironclad

    A Union sailor’s letters describe his posting at Richmond’s naval front and the Confederacy’s final days. The story of the common soldier in the American Civil War is well known. Less familiar are narratives of the common sailor’s...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    A Different Kind of Naval Warfare

    In early March 1862, crews in Brooklyn, N.Y., and Portsmouth, Va., rushed to complete two vessels radically different designs. In Brooklyn, the Union ironclad Monitor completed sea trials before heading to Hampton Roads, Va., to counter...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    Legends: A battle of “firsts” at Fort Hatteras

    The Hatteras Inlet, running between Ocracoke and Hatteras islands on North Carolina’s Outer Banks, has always provided oceangoing vessels with rare deep-water access to the state’s inland coastal towns, making it a frequented—and...

  • Military History Magazine

    Valor: Pearl Harbor’s Unlikely Hero

    Doris Miller U.S. Navy Navy Cross Pearl Harbor, Hawaii Dec. 7, 1941 At a May 27, 1942, award ceremony on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise, Admiral Chester W. Nimitz pinned the Navy Cross on the uniform of a tall,...

  • Military History Magazine

    Hallowed Ground: Fort Monroe, Virginia

    Coastal Virginia is seamed by tidal rivers, marshes and creeks that feed into and are fed by Chesapeake Bay, which in turn flows into the Atlantic Ocean. One fragile spit of land sits at the crossroads of this watery world—Old Point...

  • Military History Magazine

    The Prophet of Sea Power

    In 1890 Alfred Thayer Mahan published a book that transformed naval theory—and unleashed the world’s great fleets. Democracies are good at war for many of the same reasons they are good at capitalism and at the enhancement of the human...

  • Military History Magazine

    Nelson: What Made Him Great?

    Boldness, genius and a rare willingness to risk all in pursuit of victory. Few would disagree that Great Britain’s Vice Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson (1758–1805) was a great naval leader. Indeed, many historians consider him the...

  • Military History Magazine

    William Jones-Secretary Who?

    Though virtually forgotten by history, William Jones was instrumental in creating the U.S. Navy that stunned Britain’s Royal Navy in the War of 1812. Naval history is replete with stirring tales of brave captains and stalwart crews, of...