The British ‘Insect’ class river gunboat

Despite its different designation, the river gunboat was in reality the riverine counterpart of the sea-going monitor, but because of its supposed limitation to more confined waters was a far smaller vessel with a correspondingly lighter armament optimised for the bombardment of river bank targets. In February 1915 the British ordered 12 ‘Fly’ class river …

The anti-aircraft cruiser – the US ‘Juneau’ class

The three ‘Juneau’ class light cruisers of the US Navy were built to a modified ‘Oakland’ class design: the ‘Oakland’ class was a four-ship subset of the ‘Atlanta’ class standard. The design of the ‘Juneau’ class reflected the operating service’s experience in the later part of World War II against Japanese attacks by massed aircraft …

The anti-aircraft cruiser – the British ‘Dido’ class

The ‘Dido’ class of British light anti-aircraft cruisers comprised 11 ships (three built by Cammell Laird, two by Scotts, two by Hawthorn Leslie, and single ships by Fairfield, Stephen, Chatham Dockyard and Portsmouth Dockyard), and there were also five generally similar ships of the ‘Bellona’ class, sometimes considered a sub-class of the ‘Dido’ class. The …

The anti-aircraft cruiser – the US ‘Atlanta’ class

While the ‘Worcester’ class ships with 6-in (152.4-mm) guns can be considered the heavyweights of the anti-aircraft cruiser, they were too late for service in World War II and built only in small numbers. The ‘Atlanta’ class ships with 5-in (127-mm) guns were the middleweights of the type, saw widespread service in World War II …

The anti-aircraft cruiser – the US ‘Worcester’ class

The world’s first powered, sustained and controlled aeroplane flight had been made only in 1903 by the Wright brothers. Furthermore, technical developments were made only slowly up to the start of World War I (1914/18),where many pioneers foresaw the emergence of the aeroplane as a weapon. The potential of the aeroplane as a war machine was …