CSA Battleships


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Mark F. Jenkins

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#22
The terminology, which had been standardized for a while, was overtaken by technological developments... it was a bit chaotic until close to the turn of the century, when most of the present categories (battleship, cruiser, destroyer) began to settle in.
 

Saphroneth

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#23
I'd feel comfortable referring to a blue-water main-combatant as a battleship, such as Warrior or Gloire. Nothing the Union built really qualified in the ACW era, though.

Having checked in the Times of London, as of late 1861 the term "line-of-battle ship" was still in parlance so that is what would be called a battleship in 1861. Again, though, the US and CS built no screw liners.

As for the rest of the ships...

A vessel with a separate gundeck as well as the spar deck is a frigate. Two or more gundecks makes a vessel a ship of the line; all the guns on the spar deck makes it a corvette or a sloop (the categorization varies depending on navy and time) and both have the generic term "cruiser". (The matching term for a heavy frigate or steam liner is "ship of force".)
Below that there are gunvessels and gunboats, which can also be simply "gunboats".

"Floating Batteries" are a separate category and basically refer to either unpowered floating batteries or powered (and usually armoured) floating batteries. In the latter case they tended to be slow vessels intended to fight only inshore; the Aetna class ironclads were floating batteries, and so too was the Monitor type.
 
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Mark F. Jenkins

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#24
Yeah, that's the difficulty. The Gloire would likely have blown a three-decker ship of the line out of the water, but the liner was a "battleship" and the Gloire was a sloop or corvette under the then-current classifications. Warships were rated by the number of guns they carried and by how many gun-decks they had, rather than by any other capabilities or functions... the advance of technology knocked all of this into the proverbial cocked hat.
 

Saphroneth

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#27
If I remember correctly, the French classified Gloire as an armored frigate, just as the British classified Warrior.
They'd both qualify on their merits. The more interesting case is actually Defence, which purely on the gun count should have been a corvette.

(And the French two-decker ironclads, which were battleships.)
 
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#28
Dear friends, can I establish the followin classification IRONCLADS (sailing sea going ships), MONITORS (littorial), BATTLESHIPS (since Петр Великий and Devastations all laid down 1869 turret ships) DREADNOUGHTS (main callibre multy turret ships)? Would it be convenient?
 

Saphroneth

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#29
Dear friends, can I establish the followin classification IRONCLADS (sailing sea going ships), MONITORS (littorial), BATTLESHIPS (since Петр Великий and Devastations all laid down 1869 turret ships) DREADNOUGHTS (main callibre multy turret ships)? Would it be convenient?
Not really, as there are ships which would fit into none of the categories and ships which fit into more than one - Monarch is a seagoing sailing turret ship, Aetna is an armoured broadside battery ship with sails built for littoral work.
The unfortunate reality is that the categories get a bit fuzzy during The Very Silly Time.
 
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#30
Not really, as there are ships which would fit into none of the categories and ships which fit into more than one - Monarch is a seagoing sailing turret ship, Aetna is an armoured broadside battery ship with sails built for littoral work.
The unfortunate reality is that the categories get a bit fuzzy during The Very Silly Time.
Saphroneth, I have all respects to the attempts to classify the ships at the time when they were built, but my task is slightly another. I wish to establish 3 or 4 (in purpose of formalization) terms, commonly known now-a-day and describing all those 1019 ships. That's has nothing with appointing commanders and adjusting salaries, it is just for the DB of the year 2019.)
 

Saphroneth

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#31
Saphroneth, I have all respects to the attempts to classify the ships at the time when they were built, but my task is slightly another. I wish to establish 3 or 4 (in purpose of formalization) terms, commonly known now-a-day and describing all those 1019 ships. That's has nothing with appointing commanders and adjusting salaries, it is just for the DB of the year 2019.)
Right, but what I mean is that there were odd ships that don't fit into any neat category. HMS Polyphemus practically demands a whole subsection to herself, and the Pre-Dreadnought type is clearly distinct from the Devastation and the Victoria in retrospect.
 

rebelatsea

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#33
Saphroneth, I have all respects to the attempts to classify the ships at the time when they were built, but my task is slightly another. I wish to establish 3 or 4 (in purpose of formalization) terms, commonly known now-a-day and describing all those 1019 ships. That's has nothing with appointing commanders and adjusting salaries, it is just for the DB of the year 2019.)
The simple answer is you can't use nowadays terms for these ships. You have to use the terms appropriate to the era.
 

rebelatsea

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#34
Right, but what I mean is that there were odd ships that don't fit into any neat category. HMS Polyphemus practically demands a whole subsection to herself, and the Pre-Dreadnought type is clearly distinct from the Devastation and the Victoria in retrospect.
Polyphemus neatly fits the category of "torpedo ram". Devastation and Victoria are ironclads.
 

Saphroneth

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#35
I'd say the best way to think about it is to look at the progression of design:

1) The ships built for littoral work only, like Aetna and Monitor.
2) The ships which are basically pre-ironclad style vessels, just with armour. So broadside ironclads.
3) The ocean-going ships without turrets but with other non-broadside arrangements, like Penelope. This category shades into (2).
4) Ships which relied primarily on the ram.
5) Turret ironclad battleships like the Monarch, the Devastation and the Victoria.
6) The Pre-Dreadnought, defined by two main gun turrets at either end of the superstructure and a significant secondary battery. Basically ships like the Majestic class.
7) Dreadnoughts.

The ability to use sails to cross oceans turns up in all of the first five categories but is diagnostic of none of them.

Anything that doesn't fall into these categories (like the Polyphemus) should probably be considered a special case.
 



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