Reviewer Conny Withay:Operating her own business in office management since 1991, Conny is an avid reader, volunteers reading the Bible to the elderly, and makes handmade jewelry. A cum laude graduate with a degree in art living in the Pacific Northwest, she is married with two sons, two daughter-in-laws, and one granddaughter.
Author: Brayton Harris
Publisher: International Publishers
“The U.S. Navy had come a long way from the doldrums of 1881. It had risen in strength and efficiency to be placed on a par with the largest navy in the world. It had risen in spite of internal bungling and congressional bumbling; in spite of cyclic indifference and parochial blindness,” Brayton Harris writes at the end of his book, The Age of the Battleship: 1890-1922.
At two hundred pages and fifty-two pages, this second edition hardbound that is also available in paperback targets those interested in a particular period of the United States Navy and its battleships. After sixteen chapters on various subjects involving the navy’s ships, an index, list of illustrations with two dozen pages of black and white photographs that are not always clear, and the author’s biography complete the book.
Author Harris’s naval service includes four warship tours as navigator and communications and operations officer. After twenty-two years of active duty, he retired as a captain and spent seventeen years in advertising and public relations in the aerospace industry. He has contributed and edited nineteen books and over one hundred articles.
Originally published in 1965 as one of six volumes of the history of the U.S. Navy, this updated version covering over thirty years begins in the late 1800s when only twenty-six ships were in service. The book ends after World War I with the authorization of 157 additional ships to be built after it took ten months for 142 vessels to return thousands of soldiers back to the United States.
Discussed are topics such as the Navy’s revolution, naval life, ships, the Spanish-American War and its aftermath in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, Roosevelt’s command, reform, machinery, preparedness, World War I operations at sea and on shore, and lessons learned during the Great War.
In addition to explaining the evolution of the battleships during this period, their use and sometimes demise, also introduced are political and government interactions, as well as the famous naval men like Mahan, Dewey, Roosevelt, Sims, and Izac, to name a few.
From the Maine that took nine years to complete yet only served for two and a half years until it sank due to an explosion in Cuba to the accidents, mutiny, and war participation, Harris covers a myriad of maritime matters including submarine and aviation highlights.
Although the book is time specific, sometimes mentioning non-related information and containing no boat diagrams, it ends before World War II’s historical naval period. This eclectic read will engage any reader interested in learning more about the best, largest, and most advanced navy in the world.
Rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Thanks to Jenkins Group and the author for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review of the reader’s honest opinion.