Archive for the Ships Category

C.S.S. Manassas

Posted in Armored Devices, Ships on March 31, 2009 by secondmdus

After Ross Winan’s 1858 Cigar Ship, the idea of cigar-shaped vessels of war was widely circulated – coverage of his invention in Scientific American helped sparked the development of the David Boats, and perhaps F.D. Lee’s Torpedo Ram – which never got its iron shield, but was of similar shape and size.  While Winan’s sons tried to interest the U.S. and Russian Government in cigar-shaped gunboats, the Confederacy took a more direct approach with the C.S.S. Manassas.

This link has several great renderings of the Manassas well as several period engravings.


Posted in Ships on March 13, 2009 by secondmdus

While their is some regarding the claim of it being the first ironclad, the Kobukson, also known as the Turtle Ship was certainly an interesting approach to ship design in Korea in the 1500s – pity the poor boarding parties who ventured onto the straw mats atop the ship only to find that they were camouflage for sharply pointed metal spikes covering its turtle shaped hull -


The 2nd link  has an image of the cannons used on these ships – they shot giant metal tipped arrows …!

CSS Stonewall Becomes the Azuma …

Posted in Ships on March 12, 2009 by secondmdus

See these links for a short history of the CSS Stonewall,  built in France for the Confederacy, she made it to Cuba, after the war’s end.  The Stonewall was then sold to Japan.  See these links for images of the Stonewall, and in her life in Japan as the Azuma

Ironclads and American Monitors in Peru’s Navy

Posted in Armored Devices, Ships, Submarines (Pre-1900) on March 11, 2009 by secondmdus

Came across this while looking up ironclads – turns out two American Monitors were sold to Peru after the Civil War.

This site also has articles on:

Peruvian built ironclads:

A surviving Ericson monitor – the Huascar:

Peru’s first submarine:

and many other details of the history of Peru’s Navy,

See A Monitor Without a Time Machine

Posted in Armored Devices, Ships on March 4, 2009 by secondmdus

If you have ever wondered what the U.S.S. Moniter was like, you owe yourself a trip to the Monitor Center at the Mariner’s Museum in Newport News, Va.   The recently opened center has a life sized replica of the famous iron-clad, as well as artifacts salvaged from the wreck of the historic ship.

The Pook Turtle Project

Posted in Ships on October 15, 2008 by secondmdus

Here’ to the Pook Turtle Project – an effort to build a working — full size — replica of the USS Carondelet – one of the river ironclads from the American Civil War.

Bessemer Saloon and other experimental ships

Posted in Ships on October 15, 2008 by secondmdus

Just when you think you have seen it all, you come across another wonderful Victorian ship design – the Bessemer Saloon Steamship.  Includes mentions of the Flettner Rotor Ship, Novograd Ironclads, Winans Steamship, and several other novel ships.

The Portland

Posted in Ships on October 15, 2008 by secondmdus

Like many news junkies I tend to look at the news headlines on Yahoo frequently.  A few days ago, a story caught my attention … it read “The Portland, known as the “Titanic of New England,” sank off the Massachusetts coast Nov. 26, 1898, after it sailed from Boston, taking more than 190 people with it.”

As I read the story of divers stretching their limits and that of their gear to reach the wreck of the Portland, something from my childhood passed before my memory.

One day, long ago, my great-grandmothers best friend came to her home and borrowed her suitcase – she was going away on a steam boat excursion. She would never return – she had sailed on a ship called the Portland that had gone down with all hands- my g-grandmother reportedly said, upon hearing the news, “that was my best suitcase!”

It is truly chilling to view the images of the wreck, and to realize that something that belonged to your ancestor so long ago nestles among the ruins of the once proud vessel, along with the remains of my g-grandmothers friend and the other souls who met their doom on that long ago night.

Click here for the article:

Click here for more on the ship


Gallifrey (Verne, The Nautilus, and Winans Ironclads)

Posted in Flights of Fancy, Ships on October 1, 2008 by secondmdus

If you have an interest in Jules Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under Sea you need to check out Michael Crisafulli’s website – Gallifrey.  Michael has a wealth of information on his site regarding various approaches to the designs of the Nautilus.  As a sidelight to his thoughts and 3d images of various Nautilus designs, Michael also has a detailed section on the Winans Cigar Ships, and for those interested in devices to populate war games, a unique class of massive steam driven cigar-shaped ironclads that the Winanses tried to convince the Russian Navy to build in the 1860s. Michael has done a great job of digging up images of the Winans Ships as well as many references – perhaps he and I will combine forces and information at some point to write a book on the ships!

Ironclads – the Floating Fortresses of the American Civil War

Posted in Ships on October 1, 2008 by secondmdus

This link is to a  great collection of Civil War engravings from a Germany company specializing in illustrations – this page is a great collection of images of a variety of ironclads, floating batteries, etc.


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