Naval Book Suggestions

Chattahooch33

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Cobb's Legion Country - Bowdon, Ga.
I'm looking for a book about 1600-1700s sailing. After watching movies like Master and Commander and even Pirates of the Caribbean I'd love to know more about not just the types of ships, but the commands, procedures, methods, and things like that. Does anyone know of any suggestions?
I know this isn’t ACW related but I know if y’all can’t help no one can.
 

Mark F. Jenkins

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It's a little later than 1600s-1700s, but if you enjoyed Master and Commander, you will very likely take to Brian Lavery's Nelson's Navy: The Ships, Men, and Organisation, 1793-1815. It's a nearly-comprehensive overview of all things about His Britannic Majesty's Navy during the pivotal Napoleonic period.
 

Chattahooch33

Sergeant Major
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It's a little later than 1600s-1700s, but if you enjoyed Master and Commander, you will very likely take to Brian Lavery's Nelson's Navy: The Ships, Men, and Organisation, 1793-1815. It's a nearly-comprehensive overview of all things about His Britannic Majesty's Navy during the pivotal Napoleonic period.
Would things be much different than sailing during the Golden Age of piracy?
 

Mark F. Jenkins

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Not really sure... my focus has always been naval, not piratical (The Pirates of Penzance notwithstanding). During the period covered by Lavery's book, the Age of Fighting Sail reached its technological and tactical summit; if you're looking for something earlier along the developmental line, might not be what you're looking for.
 

rebelatsea

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 30, 2013
Location
Kent ,England.
It's a little later than 1600s-1700s, but if you enjoyed Master and Commander, you will very likely take to Brian Lavery's Nelson's Navy: The Ships, Men, and Organisation, 1793-1815. It's a nearly-comprehensive overview of all things about His Britannic Majesty's Navy during the pivotal Napoleonic period.
beat me to it Mark. very highly recommended.
 

DaveBrt

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 6, 2010
Location
Charlotte, NC
Another very useful one:

71kURCJpS8L._AC_UY218_.jpg
 
Joined
Jul 28, 2019
N.A.M Rodger again with a Royal Navy flavour but both Safeguard of the Sea and Command of the Ocean have chapters on shipboard life in various periods from at least the middle ages to the War of 1812.

Edit: In terms of fiction and be warned I read this many, many, many years ago when I was but a very small rodent there is Proud New Flags by Evan Wyck Mason. Now back then I really enjoyed it but I do note the modern reviews are damning so be warned. Actually ACW and definitely partisan to the Confederacy unless I am really misremembering but might be fun.
 

Lincoln56

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Location
Texas
N.A.M Rodger again with a Royal Navy flavour
N.A.M. Rodger also wrote 'The Wooden World: Anatomy of the Georgian Navy'

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=the+wooden+world+an+anatomy+of+the+georgian+navy&crid=3B5ZE7TPM52ZR&sprefix=the+wooden+world,aps,199&ref=nb_sb_ss_ts-doa-p_2_16

Here is a recent release regarding life in the age of sail. Haven't had an opportunity to read yet:

'Sons of the Waves: The Common Seaman in the Heroic Age of Sail' by Stephen Taylor

https://www.amazon.com/dp/0300245718/?tag=civilwartalkc-20

Here is a collection of first person accounts and quotes about naval warfare during the Napoleonic era:

'The War For All The Oceans' by Roy Adkins. Adkins has written quite a few books on the age of sail.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/0670038644/?tag=civilwartalkc-20

Another by Roy and Leslie Adkins book: 'Jack Tar - Life in Nelson's Navy'

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08W5CS7RL/?tag=civilwartalkc-20

Concur with the above opinions of: Brian Lavery's Nelson's Navy: The Ships, Men, and Organisation, 1793-1815.
 
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rebelatsea

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 30, 2013
Location
Kent ,England.
N.A.M Rodger again with a Royal Navy flavour but both Safeguard of the Sea and Command of the Ocean have chapters on shipboard life in various periods from at least the middle ages to the War of 1812.

Edit: In terms of fiction and be warned I read this many, many, many years ago when I was but a very small rodent there is Proud New Flags by Evan Wyck Mason. Now back then I really enjoyed it but I do note the modern reviews are damning so be warned. Actually ACW and definitely partisan to the Confederacy unless I am really misremembering but might be fun.
I have a first edition copy. Mason was a historian by profession, but I felt the book read more like a first production movie screen play with scenes that could be left in or out according to whim !
Interestingly, despite his disclaimer in the preface, Lachlan Brunton DID exist. The family originated as either Breton or Bruton, they were originally Huguenots, contemporary with Marc Isambard Brunel, and are associated with early canal builders and engineers. At some stage the N was added to the name. Lachlan's Father and Grandfather came to be employed in George and Robert Stephenson's railway empire and Lachlan himself was apprenticed to the great Daniel Gooch of the Great Western Railway.
His story is more interesting than the book tells and would make a good movie now, as the world has become more broad minded. Suffice to say that a certain part of the young man's anatomy got him into constant problems, and why he had to leave England in a hurry, ending up in the South.
The Brunton family line still exists and at least one still in the railway industry, being a senior manager.
 

redbob

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Location
Hoover, Alabama
Master and Commander lost some of it's luster when I found out that the French ship was originally American in the book and they changed it for the movie because they didn't think that it would have been successful in the US market with the enemy being US.
 

Mark F. Jenkins

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Master and Commander lost some of it's luster when I found out that the French ship was originally American in the book and they changed it for the movie because they didn't think that it would have been successful in the US market with the enemy being US.

I think it would have been even more interesting had they actually made the opponent be David Porter's Essex, with a young Midshipman David G. Farragut aboard! But IIRC, Patrick O'Brian fictionalized the American ship and skipper. (So the French ship in the movie is a double fictionalization.)
 
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Dutch Waits

Cadet
Joined
Oct 19, 2020
Location
Athens, Ohio
Two volumes by Marcus Rediker might be what you're looking for...

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea: Merchant Seamen, Pirates, and the Anglo-American Maritime World, 1700-1750 (Cambridge University Press 1987)

Villains of All Nations: Atlantic Pirates in the Golden Age (Beacon Press 2004)

as well as...

Benerson Little, The Sea Rover's Practice: Pirate Tactics and Techniques, 1630-1730 (Potomac Books 2007).
 

Phantom

Private
Joined
Feb 19, 2019
To learn about actually sailing, making a ship ,one, I'd suggest reading John Harland, Seamanship in the Age of Sail: An Account of Shiphandling of the Sailing Man-O-War, 1600-1860. It is well illustrated and shows how each sail worked, how they worked together, and how they were used to make the ship do different things.

If you want to learn about what they looked like as they moved, worked, and fought John Harland also wrote: Ships and Seamanship: The Maritime Prints of J. J. Baugean. I can look at a single print and find new details for ten minutes.
 
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