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Treaty Cruisers: The First International Warship Building Competition

The Washington Naval Treaty of 1921 and subsequent treaties in the 1930s effectively established the size and composition of the various navies in World War II. In particular they laid down design parameters and tonnage limitations for each class of warship including battleships, aircraft carriers, cruisers and destroyers. With one or two exceptions, battleship construction was deferred until the mid 1930s but virtually all navies embraced the concept of the 8in gun armed 10,000 ton heavy cruisers and laid down new vessels almost immediately. This book will trace the political processes which led to the treaties, describe the heavy cruisers designed and built to the same rules by each nation and then consider how the various classes fared in World War II and will attempt to assess which was the most successful. Ships from the navies of Britain, France, Italy, Germany, the USA and Japan will be included.Appendices cover Construction Tables, History of each ship, Technical Specifications, Armament and Aircraft Carried.

File Size: 3952 KB

Print Length: 302 pages

Publisher: Pen and Sword Maritime (November 19, 2005)

Publication Date: August 16, 2013

Sold by:  Digital Services LLC

Language: English


Text-to-Speech: Enabled

X-Ray: Enabled

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As one of the few folks who consider cruisers more interesting even than battleships, I was excited to find this book. The concept is an excellent one, to critique how the various navies applied their design expertise and requirements to a common set of criteria--the treaty limits on tonnage and gun caliber. Which ships rate at the top of this competition?I liked how the material was organized (with one reservation, which I'll explain below). The first section (16 pages) provides an adequate overview of the treaties and an account of the development of the cruiser in its historical context--good common sense, after all, for a book on treaty cruisers. Unfortunately, this is the best part of the book.Next, a role call of each navy's treaty cruisers (70 pages) gives quick descriptions of design evolution and features, also mentioning the highlights of each ship's wartime career. Owners of CRUISERS OF WORLD WAR TWO will recognize this section as a less accurate version of M.J. Whitley's material. In fact, it appears that some of Marriott's mistakes derive from a hasty reading of Whitley. Other mistakes are more mysterious: 8-inch conning tower armor in the American "tinclads"?The following chapters reflect the one major mistake in the book's organization. The author failed to pinpoint his criterion for judging the ships--by their design qualities, by their war records, by their ultimate level of success? To cover all his bases, he crams almost the entire war-ful of fleet actions into 60 pages. This creates redundancy with the previous section.

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