Wednesday, May 3, 2017

The first Battleship

What a difference a decade makes.  1861 saw the launch of the U.S.S. Monitor, one of the first ironclad warships.  The Monitor was unique in that it had an armored turret containing the ship's armament and relied entirely on steam for propulsion.  But it had a very low freeboard, and in fact was lost in a gale off of Cape Hatteras a year later.

But fast forward to 1871 and we find this:

This is the H.M.S. Devastation, the world's first Battleship.  Turrets fore and aft, high freeboard allowing full ocean going capability, and reliant on steam (not sail) power.  It was the first ship to combine all of these capabilities in one ship - one that looks modern to our eyes.

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