Twenty years ago today, on September 26, 2002, the Senegalese ferry Le Joola sank with the loss of an estimated 1,863 lives. That means it cost more lives than the sinking of the Titanic in 1912. Only 64 survivors were found. That makes it the second-worst non-military maritime disaster in history, surpassed only by the… Continue reading Remembering Africa’s worst maritime tragedy
Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson is perhaps the most famous of Britain’s “seadog Admirals”, earning a brilliant military reputation at battles such as Cape St. Vincent, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, the Nile and Copenhagen, before his final victory – and death – at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. One of his accomplishments was as a Captain in… Continue reading Saturday Snippet: Nelson evacuates Corsica in the face of revolutionaries
I had to laugh at this take on the evacuation of the Titanic, if it happened today. I can’t embed it here, but follow the link below to see it on YouTube. It’s only a little over a minute long. https://youtube.com/shorts/eaDqJohZM_A?feature=share I’m only surprised they didn’t include a requirement for a COVID-19 vaccination certificate… Continue reading A politically correct Titanic???
I’m sure most readers are aware that the battleship USS Texas, launched in 1912 and a veteran of both World Wars, has just been moved to a floating dry dock for extensive repairs and rehabilitation. After 110 years since her launching, she needs them. The images below are circulating on social media. They’re probably… Continue reading An elderly but still pugnacious lady prepares for her facelift
I was intrigued to read that the semi-wild horse herd on Assateague Island, off the shores of Maryland and Virginia, may have a more interesting ancestry than previously thought. Where did the ponies come from? Until recently, most historians and scientists have thought that the herd grew from horses left to graze by English… Continue reading An interesting twist on animal history
As regular readers will know, I’m hard at work on several novels that I hope to publish over the course of the next year. Two are approaching completion: the sixth volume of the Maxwell Saga military science-fiction series, and the first in a trilogy about the Union Navy during the Civil War of 1861-65. … Continue reading Saturday Snippet: The Civil War at sea, from one of my current works in progress
I was interested – and amused – to learn that apple cider (the “hard” version, containing alcohol, rather than the “soft” version most Americans know) was a staple of early ocean exploration in one part of the world. The BBC reports: As chateaux vineyards are to Bordeaux and single malt distilleries are to Speyside,… Continue reading Alcohol as a factor in ocean exploration?
Back in the 1960’s, one of my all-time favorite naval historians, the late John Winton, edited a volume of short memoirs of naval history during World War II. It was part of a trilogy called the “Freedom’s Battle” series: the other two dealt with war on land and war in the air. His was… Continue reading Saturday Snippet: A chaplain at war
At the start of World War II, the Royal Navy began a massive expansion that would multiply its numbers of ships and seamen many times over. A large part of this was calling up reservists of the Royal Naval Reserve (RNR – drawn from professional seamen of the Merchant Navy and fishing fleets) and… Continue reading Saturday Snippet: The early days of World War II at sea
Regular readers will recall that last year, I put up a Saturday Snippet from the memoirs of a British businessman who spent the Civil War years running contraband cargoes through the Union blockade to Confederate ports. Earlier that same year, I posted a Snippet from what was then intended to be a fantasy naval… Continue reading Saturday Snippet: A wild and wintry sea during the Civil War