Grand Duchy of Oldenburg
It ranked tenth among the German states and had one vote in the Bundesrat of Germany and three members in the Reichstag. Its ruling family, the House of Oldenburg, came to rule in Denmark, Sweden, the first known count of Oldenburg was Elimar I. This was the case between 1262 and 1447, between 1463 and 1547, and between 1577 and 1617, the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen and the bishop of Münster were frequently at war with the counts of Oldenburg. In 1440, Christian succeeded his father Dietrich, called Fortunatus, in 1448 Christian was elected king of Denmark as Christian I, partly based on his maternal descent from previous Danish kings. Although far away from the Danish borders, Oldenburg was now a Danish exclave, the control over the town was left to the kings brothers, who established a short reign of tyranny. In 1450, Christian became king of Norway and in 1457, in 1460, he inherited the Duchy of Schleswig and the County of Holstein, an event of high importance for the future history of Oldenburg.
In 1454, he handed over Oldenburg to his brother Gerhard, a wild prince, in 1483, Gerhard was compelled to abdicate in favor of his sons, and he died while on pilgrimage in Spain. Early in the 16th century, Oldenburg was again enlarged at the expense of the Frisians, one of Anthonys brothers, won some reputation as a soldier. Anthonys grandson, Anthony Günther, who succeeded in 1603, considered himself the wisest prince who had yet ruled Oldenburg, jever had been acquired before he became count, but in 1624 he added Kniphausen and Varel to his lands, with which in 1647 Delmenhorst was finally united. He obtained from the emperor the right to tolls on vessels passing along the Weser. In 1607 he erected a Renaissance schloss, after the death of Anthony Günther, Oldenburg fell again under Danish authority. By the German Mediatisation of 1803, Oldenburg acquired the Oldenburg Münsterland, between 1810 and 1814, Oldenburg was occupied by Napoleonic France. Oldenburg did not entirely escape from the Revolutions of 1848 that swept across Europe, in 1849 Augustus granted a constitution of a very liberal character to his subjects.
In 1852 some modifications were introduced into the constitution, yet it remained one of the most progressive in the German Confederation, important alterations were made in the administrative system in 1855 and again in 1868, and government oversight on church affairs was ordered by a law of 1863. In 1866 he had sided with this power against the Austrian Empire and had joined the North German Confederation, counts and grand dukes of Oldenburg This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain, Hugh, ed. article name needed
SMS Hannover was the second of five Deutschland-class pre-dreadnoughts of the German Imperial Navy. Hannover and the three subsequently constructed ships differed slightly in design and construction from the lead ship Deutschland in their propulsion systems and slightly thicker armor. The ship was named after the Prussian province of Hannover, now in Lower Saxony and her sisters saw extensive service with the fleet. The ship took part in all major training maneuvers until World War I broke out in July 1914, Hannover and her sisters were immediately pressed into guard duties in the mouth of the Elbe River while the rest of the fleet mobilized. The ship took part in a number of advances, which culminated in the Battle of Jutland on 31 May –1 June 1916. During the battle, Hannover served as the flagship for the IV Division of the II Battle Squadron, after Jutland and her three surviving sisters were removed from active duty with the fleet to serve as guard ships. In 1917, Hannover was briefly used as a ship before being returned to guard duties in the Baltic Sea.
The ship was decommissioned in December 1918, shortly after the end of the war, Hannover was brought back to active service in the Reichsmarine, the post-war Germany navy. She served with the fleet for ten years, from 1921 to 1931, the navy planned to convert the ship into a radio-controlled target ship for aircraft, but this was never carried out. The ship was broken up for scrap between 1944 and 1946 in Bremerhaven. Her bell is preserved at the Military History Museum of the Bundeswehr in Dresden, Hannover was intended to fight in the German battle line with the other battleships of the High Seas Fleet. The ship was laid down on 7 November 1904 at the Kaiserliche Werft shipyard in Wilhelmshaven and she was launched on 29 May 1905 and commissioned for trials on 1 October 1907, but the fleet exercises in the Skagerrak in November interrupted the trials. Trials resumed after the maneuvers were completed, and by 13 February 1908 Hannover was ready to join the active fleet and she was assigned to the II Battle Squadron of the High Seas Fleet, joining her sisters Deutschland and Pommern.
However, the new British battleship HMS Dreadnought—armed with ten 12-inch guns—was commissioned in December 1906, Dreadnoughts revolutionary design rendered obsolete every ship of the German navy, including the brand-new Hannover. Hannover was 127.60 m long, had a beam of 22.20 m, and she had a full-load displacement of 14,218 metric tons. The ship was equipped with triple expansion engines that produced a rated 17,524 indicated horsepower, at a cruising speed of 10 knots, she could steam for 4,520 nautical miles. The ships primary armament consisted of four 28 cm SK L/40 guns in two twin turrets and she was equipped with fourteen 17 cm guns mounted in casemates and twenty 8.8 cm guns in pivot mounts. The ship was armed with six 45 cm torpedo tubes
An ironclad is a steam-propelled warship protected by iron or steel armor plates used in the early part of the second half of the 19th century. The ironclad was developed as a result of the vulnerability of warships to explosive or incendiary shells. The first ironclad battleship, was launched by the French Navy in November 1859 and this type of ship would come to be very successful in the American Civil War. Ironclads were designed for several roles, including as high seas battleships, coastal defense ships and this change was pushed forward by the development of heavier naval guns, more sophisticated steam engines, and advances in metallurgy which made steel shipbuilding possible. The quick pace of change meant that ships were obsolete as soon as they were finished. Many ironclads were built to use of the ram or the torpedo. There is no end to the ironclad period, but towards the end of the 1890s the term ironclad dropped out of use. New ships were constructed to a standard pattern and designated battleships or armored cruisers.
The ironclad became technically feasible and tactically necessary because of developments in shipbuilding in the first half of the 19th century. According to naval historian J. Richard Hill, The had three characteristics, a metal-skinned hull, steam propulsion and a main armament of guns capable of firing explosive shells. It is only when all three characteristics are present that a ship can properly be called an ironclad. Each of these developments was introduced separately in the decade before the first ironclads, in the 18th and early 19th centuries fleets had relied on two types of major warship, the ship of the line and the frigate. The first major change to these types was the introduction of power for propulsion. While paddle steamer warships had been used from the 1830s onwards, steam-powered screw frigates were built in the mid-1840s, and at the end of the decade the French Navy introduced steam power to its line of battle. The desire for change came from the ambition of Napoleon III to gain influence in Europe.
The first purpose-built steam battleship was the 90-gun Napoléon in 1850, the introduction of the steam ship-of-the-line led to a building competition between France and Britain. Eight sister ships to Napoléon were built in France over a period of ten years, France built ten new wooden steam battleships and converted 28 from older ships of the line, while the United Kingdom built 18 and converted 41. The era of the wooden steam ship-of-the-line was brief, because of new, in the 1820s and 1830s, warships began to mount increasingly heavy guns, replacing 18- and 24-pounder guns with 32-pounders on sailing ships-of-the-line and introducing 68-pounders on steamers
Kingdom of Prussia
It was the driving force behind the unification of Germany in 1871 and was the leading state of the German Empire until its dissolution in 1918. Although it took its name from the region called Prussia, it was based in the Margraviate of Brandenburg, the kings of Prussia were from the House of Hohenzollern. Prussia was a power from the time it became a kingdom, through its predecessor, Brandenburg-Prussia. Prussia continued its rise to power under the guidance of Frederick II, more known as Frederick the Great. After the might of Prussia was revealed it was considered as a power among the German states. Throughout the next hundred years Prussia went on to win many battles and it was because of its power that Prussia continuously tried to unify all the German states under its rule. Attempts at creation of a federation remained unsuccessful and the German Confederation collapsed in 1866 when war ensued between its two most powerful states and Austria. The North German Confederation which lasted from 1867–1871, created a union between the Prussian-aligned states while Austria and most of Southern Germany remained independent.
The North German Confederation was seen as more of an alliance of military strength in the aftermath of the Austro-Prussian War, the German Empire lasted from 1871–1918 with the successful unification of all the German states under Prussian hegemony. This was due to the defeat of Napoleon III in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–71, in 1871, Germany unified into a single country, minus Austria and Switzerland, with Prussia the dominant power. Prussia is considered the predecessor of the unified German Reich. The Kingdom left a significant cultural legacy, today notably promoted by the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, in 1415 a Hohenzollern Burgrave came from the south to the March of Brandenburg and took control of the area as elector. In 1417 the Hohenzollern was made an elector of the Holy Roman Empire, after the Polish wars, the newly established Baltic towns of the German states including Prussia, suffered many economic setbacks. Many of the Prussian towns could not even afford to attend political meetings outside of Prussia, the towns were poverty stricken, with even the largest town, having to borrow money from elsewhere to pay for trade.
Poverty in these towns was partly caused by Prussias neighbors, who had established and developed such a monopoly on trading that these new towns simply could not compete and these issues led to feuds, trade competition and invasions. However, the fall of these gave rise to the nobility, separated the east and the west. It was clear in 1440 how different Brandenburg was from the other German territories, not only did it face partition from within but the threat of its neighbors. It prevented the issue of partition by enacting the Dispositio Achillea which instilled the principle of primogeniture to both the Brandenburg and Franconian territories, the second issue was solved through expansion
A warship is a naval ship that is built and primarily intended for naval warfare. Usually they belong to the forces of a state. As well as being armed, warships are designed to damage and are usually faster. Unlike a merchant ship, which carries cargo, a warship typically carries weapons, ammunition. Warships usually belong to a navy, though they have operated by individuals, cooperatives. In wartime, the distinction between warships and merchant ships is often blurred, in war, merchant ships are often armed and used as auxiliary warships, such as the Q-ships of the First World War and the armed merchant cruisers of the Second World War. Until the 17th century it was common for merchant ships to be pressed into naval service, until the threat of piracy subsided in the 19th century, it was normal practice to arm larger merchant ships such as galleons. Warships have often used as troop carriers or supply ships. The development of catapults in the 4th century BC and the subsequent refinement of technology enabled the first fleets of artillery-equipped warships by the Hellenistic age.
During late antiquity, ramming fell out of use and the galley tactics against other ships used during the Middle Ages until the late 16th century focused on boarding. Naval artillery was redeveloped in the 14th century, but cannon did not become common at sea until the guns were capable of being reloaded quickly enough to be reused in the same battle. The size of a required to carry a large number of cannons made oar-based propulsion impossible. The sailing man-of-war emerged during the 16th century, by the middle of the 17th century, warships were carrying increasing numbers of cannon on their broadsides and tactics evolved to bring each ships firepower to bear in a line of battle. The man-of-war now evolved into the ship of the line, in the 18th century, the frigate and sloop-of-war – too small to stand in the line of battle – evolved to convoy trade, scout for enemy ships and blockade enemy coasts. During the 19th century a revolution took place in the means of propulsion, naval armament.
Marine steam engines were introduced, at first as an auxiliary force, the Crimean War gave a great stimulus to the development of guns. The introduction of explosive shells soon led to the introduction of iron, the first ironclad warships, the French Gloire and British Warrior, made wooden vessels obsolete. Metal soon entirely replaced wood as the material for warship construction
SMS Kaiser Friedrich III
SMS Kaiser Friedrich III was the lead ship of the Kaiser Friedrich III class of pre-dreadnought battleships. She was laid down at the Kaiserliche Werft in Wilhelmshaven in March 1895, launched in July 1896, the ship was armed with a main battery of four 24-centimeter guns in two twin gun turrets supported by a secondary battery of eighteen 15 cm guns. The I Squadron was primarily occupied with training exercises each year. Kaiser Friedrich III was extensively modernized in 1908, her guns were reorganized. After returning to service in 1910, Kaiser Friedrich III was placed in the Reserve Formation, the years 1913 and 1914 passed without any active service until the outbreak of World War I in July 1914. The ships conducted two operations in the Baltic but did not encounter any hostile warships, by February 1915, Kaiser Friedrich was withdrawn from service and eventually decommissioned in November, thereafter being employed as a prison ship and as a barracks ship. Kaiser Friedrich III was 125.3 m long overall and had a beam of 20.4 m and she displaced 11,097 t normally and up to 11,785 t at full load.
The ship was powered by three 3-cylinder vertical triple-expansion steam engines that drove three screw propellers, steam was provided by four Marine-type and eight cylindrical boilers, all of which burned coal. Kaiser Friedrich IIIs powerplant was rated at 13,000 PS, the ship had a crew that ranged from 658 to 687 officers and enlisted men. The ships armament consisted of a battery of four 24 cm SK L/40 guns in twin gun turrets, one fore. Her secondary armament consisted of eighteen 15 cm SK L/40 guns and she carried twelve 1-pounder machine guns, but these were removed. The armament suite was rounded out with six 45 cm torpedo tubes, the ships belt armor was 150 to 300 mm thick, and the deck was 65 mm thick. The conning tower and main turrets were protected with 250 mm of armor plating. Kaiser Friedrich IIIs keel was laid on 5 March 1895, at the Kaiserliche Werft in Wilhelmshaven, Kaiser Wilhelm II, the son of the ships namesake, hammered the first rivet into the keel. She was ordered under the contract name Ersatz Preussen, to replace the armored frigate Preussen.
Kaiser Friedrich III was launched on 1 July 1896 and Wilhelm II was again present, the ship was commissioned on 7 October 1898 and began sea trials in the Baltic Sea. Of major concern was how the arrangement would perform on a ship the size of Kaiser Friedrich III. After the trials were completed in mid-February 1899, Kaiser Friedrich returned to Wilhelmshaven and was decommissioned so defects identified during the trials could be remedied, the work lasted longer than originally planned, and the ship remained out of service for much of the year
The Deutschland class was a group of five pre-dreadnought battleships built for the German Kaiserliche Marine. The class comprised Deutschland, Pommern, built between 1903 and 1908, the ships closely resembled those of the preceding Braunschweig class, though they had stronger armor protection. They were made obsolete before they were completed by the launch of the revolutionary Royal Navy battleship HMS Dreadnought in 1906. As a result, they were the last ships of that built for the German Navy. They were followed by the Nassau-class battleships, Germanys first dreadnought battleships, despite their obsolescence, all five of these ships were present at the Battle of Jutland on 31 May –1 June 1916. In the confused night actions, Pommern was torpedoed and sunk, after the battle, the four surviving ships were removed from the front-line fleet and employed in secondary tasks. The Treaty of Versailles permitted Germany to retain several old battleships for coastal defense, instead of being used as a coastal defense ship, Deutschland was broken up in 1920–1922.
Hannover was to be converted into a vessel, although this was never done. She was eventually broken up in 1944–1946, Schlesien and Schleswig-Holstein were the only two vessels of the class to see continued front-line service in the Reichsmarine and the Kriegsmarine. Both ships saw limited duty during World War II, which was inaugurated by the firing of Schleswig-Holsteins main guns at the Polish fortress at Westerplatte, near the end of the war the two ships were both sunk. The five Deutschland-class battleships were the last pre-dreadnoughts built by the German Navy and they were similar to the preceding Braunschweig-class ships—Deutschland was nearly identical, though the design was modified slightly after the lead ship was laid down. The four subsequent ships had a different boiler arrangement and slightly thicker armor compared to the Braunschweig-class ships. All five vessels of the Deutschland class dispensed with the mountings for the secondary 17-centimeter guns. The ships were built despite rumors of the capabilities of the revolutionary HMS Dreadnought under construction, Admiral Alfred von Tirpitz insisted on their construction, since larger ships would have necessitated widening the Kaiser Wilhelm Canal.
This would have put a strain on the naval budget for the year. The Deutschland-class ships were 125.90 m long at the waterline and 127.60 m overall and they had a beam of 22.20 m and a draft of 8.21 m forward. The ships were designed to displace 13,191 metric tons with a standard load, the Deutschland-class ships hulls were built with transverse and longitudinal steel frames. Steel hull plates were riveted to the created by the frames
The Helgoland class was the second class of German dreadnought battleships. Constructed from 1908 to 1912, the class comprised four ships, the ship, Ostfriesland. The Helgolands were easily distinguished from the preceding Nassaus by the three funnels that were arranged, compared to the two larger funnels of the previous class. The ships retained the main battery layout of the Nassau class. The ships served as a unit in the I Division, I Battle Squadron alongside the Nassau-class ships in the II Division of the I Battle Squadron. They saw combat during World War I, including the Battle of Jutland in the North Sea, All four survived the war, but were not taken as part of the German fleet that was interned at Scapa Flow. When the German ships at Scapa Flow were scuttled, the four Helgolands were ceded as war reparations to the victorious Allied powers in the sunken ships stead, Ostfriesland was taken by the US Navy and expended as a target during Billy Mitchells air power demonstration in July 1921.
Helgoland and Oldenburg were allotted to Britain and Japan respectively, Thüringen was delivered to France in 1920, and was used as a target ship for the French navy. The ship was broken up between 1923 and 1933. The Triple Entente between the United Kingdom and Russia had been signed in 1907, Admiral von Tirpitz reacted to this development with the request for newer and stronger capital ships. His thoughts on the matter were, The aim which I had to keep in view, for technical and organizing reasons as well as reasons of political finance was to build as steadily as possible. His appeal came in the form of the proposed Second Amendment to the Naval Law, for the second class of German dreadnoughts, there was considerable debate as to what changes would be made from the first design. In May 1906, the Reichsmarineamt received word that the British were building battleships equipped with 13.5 inches guns, as a result, the General Navy Department advocated increasing the caliber of the main battery from 28 cm to 30.5 cm.
Admiral von Tirpitz was reluctant to agree to change, as he wished to avoid escalating the arms race with Britain. Admiral von Tirpitzs hesitation at increasing the armament of the new ships was lost when it became known in early 1907 that the United States Navy was building battleships with 30.5 cm guns. In March 1907, von Tirpitz ordered the Construction Department to prepare a design with 30.5 cm guns and 320 mm thick belt armor, some dispute remained over the arrangement of the main battery. The two Minas Geraes-class battleships being built for Brazil mounted the same number of guns, but in an efficient arrangement. Superfiring turret pairs were placed on end of the ship
The Nassau class were a group of four German dreadnought battleships built for the Imperial Navy. They were the German response to the introduction of the all big gun British HMS Dreadnought, the class was composed of Nassau, Rheinland and Westfalen. All four ships were laid down in mid-1907, and completed between May and September 1910, compared to their British contemporaries, the Nassau-class ships were lighter and had a wider beam. They were two knots slower, because the German ships retained vertical triple-expansion engines as opposed to the turbine engines adopted by the British. The ships carried smaller main guns—11-inch guns rather than the 12-inch guns mounted on the British ships, after their commissioning into the German fleet, all four ships served as a unit, the II Division of I Battle Squadron. Two of the ships and Posen, took part in the inconclusive Battle of the Gulf of Riga in 1915, during which they engaged the Russian pre-dreadnought Slava. The Nassau-class ships took part in the Battle of Jutland on 31 May and 1 June 1916 as the II Battle Squadron, they suffered only a handful of secondary battery hits and limited casualties.
At the end of the First World War, the four ships were seized as war prizes by the victorious Allied powers, in 1906, the launch of the all big gun HMS Dreadnought made all other battleships in existence obsolete. The launch of the revolutionary Dreadnought meant that any future battleships that could compete with her would be more expensive than the older pre-dreadnought battleships. A week after the amendment was passed, funds for two 18, 000-ton battleships and a 15, 000-ton armored cruiser were allocated to the Navy, funds were provided to widen the Kaiser Wilhelm Canal and enlarge dock facilities to accommodate the larger ships. A debate ensued in the Reichsmarineamt over the construction of the new ships, tirpitz favored following the Royal Navy by building dreadnought battleships and battlecruisers as well. Tirpitz saw it as an opportunity to break Britains commitment to the two power standard, tirpitz intended to use the funds that had been allocated for armored cruisers to build battlecruisers instead, although they were still to be classified as armored cruisers.
Nassau and Westfalen were the first dreadnoughts ordered under the 1906–07 program and this had the effect of necessitating the replacement of the coastal defense ships of the Siegfried and Oldenburg classes, as well as the pre-dreadnoughts of the Brandenburg class. The Sachsen-class ironclads needed replacement, as they were already obsolete, the four Sachsens were to be replaced by the Nassau class. The second pair of ships in the Nassau class, the ships were 146.1 m long,26.9 m wide, and had a draught of 8.9 m. The ships had a length to width ratio of 5.45, to some extent, the greater than normal width was due to the four wing turrets, which necessitated a wider hull. They displaced 18,873 tonnes with a load, and 20,535 t fully laden. The ships had 19 watertight compartments, with the exception of Nassau, all four ships had a double bottom for 88 percent of the keel
Wilhelm II, German Emperor
Wilhelm II or William II was the last German Emperor and King of Prussia, ruling the German Empire and the Kingdom of Prussia from 15 June 1888 to 9 November 1918. He was the eldest grandchild of the British Queen Victoria and related to many monarchs and his leading generals, Paul von Hindenburg and Erich Ludendorff, dictated policy during the First World War with little regard for the civilian government. An ineffective war-time leader, he lost the support of the army, abdicated in November 1918, and fled to exile in the Netherlands. Wilhelm was born on 27 January 1859 at the Crown Princes Palace, Berlin to Prince Frederick William of Prussia and his wife, Princess Royal, the eldest daughter of Britains Queen Victoria. At the time of his birth, his great-uncle Frederick William IV was king of Prussia, a traumatic breech birth left him with a withered left arm due to Erbs palsy, which he tried with some success to conceal. His left arm was about 6 inches shorter than his right arm, historians have suggested that this disability affected his emotional development.
In 1863, Wilhelm was taken to England to be present at the wedding of his Uncle Bertie, William attended the ceremony in a Highland costume, complete with a small toy dirk. During the ceremony the four-year-old became restless and his eighteen-year-old uncle Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, charged with keeping an eye on him, told him to be quiet, but Wilhelm drew his dirk and threatened Alfred. When Alfred attempted to subdue him by force, Wilhelm bit him on the leg and his grandmother, Queen Victoria, missed seeing the fracas, to her Wilhelm remained a clever, good little child, the great favourite of my beloved Vicky. His mother, was obsessed with his damaged arm and she blamed herself for the childs handicap and insisted that he become a good rider. The thought that he, as heir to the throne, should not be able to ride was intolerable to her, riding lessons began when Wilhelm was eight and were a matter of endurance for Wilhelm. Over and over, the prince was set on his horse. He fell off time after time but despite his tears was set on its back again, after weeks of this he finally got it right and was able to maintain his balance.
Wilhelm, from six years of age, was tutored and heavily influenced by the 39-year-old teacher Georg Hinzpeter, Hinzpeter, he wrote, was really a good fellow. Whether he was the tutor for me, I dare not decide. The torments inflicted on me, in this riding, must be attributed to my mother. As a teenager he was educated at Kassel at the Friedrichsgymnasium, in January 1877, Wilhelm finished high school and on his eighteenth birthday received as a present from his grandmother, Queen Victoria, the Order of the Garter. After Kassel he spent four terms at the University of Bonn, studying law and he became a member of the exclusive Corps Borussia Bonn
A cruiser is a type of warship. The term has been in use for several hundred years, and has had different meanings throughout this period. In the middle of the 19th century, cruiser came to be a classification for the intended for cruising distant waters, commerce raiding. Cruisers came in a variety of sizes, from the medium-sized protected cruiser to large armored cruisers that were nearly as big as a pre-dreadnought battleship. With the advent of the battleship before World War I. The very large battlecruisers of the World War I era that succeeded armored cruisers were now classified, along with dreadnought battleships, in the 20th century, the obsolescence of the battleship left the cruiser as the largest and most powerful surface combatant after the aircraft carrier. The role of the cruiser varied according to ship and navy, often including air defense, during the Cold War, the Soviet Navys cruisers had heavy anti-ship missile armament designed to sink NATO carrier task forces via saturation attack.
The U. S. Adams guided-missile destroyers tasked with the air defense role. Indeed, the newest U. S. Navy destroyers are more heavily-armed than some of the cruisers that they succeeded, currently only three nations operate cruisers, the United States and Peru. The term cruiser or cruizer was first commonly used in the 17th century to refer to an independent warship, Cruiser meant the purpose or mission of a ship, rather than a category of vessel. However, the term was used to mean a smaller, faster warship suitable for such a role. The Dutch navy was noted for its cruisers in the 17th century, while the Royal Navy—and French and Spanish navies—subsequently caught up in terms of their numbers, during the 18th century the frigate became the preeminent type of cruiser. A frigate was a small, long range, lightly armed ship used for scouting, carrying dispatches, the other principal type of cruiser was the sloop, but many other miscellaneous types of ship were used as well. During the 19th century, navies began to use steam power for their fleets, the 1840s saw the construction of experimental steam-powered frigates and sloops.
By the middle of the 1850s, the British and U. S. Navies were both building steam frigates with very long hulls and a gun armament, for instance USS Merrimack or Mersey. The 1860s saw the introduction of the ironclad, the first ironclads were frigates, in the sense of having one gun deck, they were clearly the most powerful ships in the navy, and were principally to serve in the line of battle. In spite of their speed, they would have been wasted in a cruising role. The French constructed a number of smaller ironclads for overseas cruising duties, starting with the Belliqueuse and these station ironclads were the beginning of the development of the armored cruisers, a type of ironclad specifically for the traditional cruiser missions of fast, independent raiding and patrol