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The Secret Alliances Between History's Most Notorious Buccaneers and Colonial America
Was classical piracy an earlier version of state-sponsored terrorism?
Here's the story of how almost every well-known buccaneer of the "Golden Age of Piracy" enjoyed active sponsorship from England's governors in the American colonies- setting a pattern of official disobedience to the Crown that would ultimately contribute to the American push for independence. Relying on rare primary sources discovered in government archives in England, the Carolinas, Rhode Island, Jamaica, and elsewhere, Burgess combines true tales of derring-do with groundbreaking research in this fascinating history.
Isambard Kingdom Brunel's SS Great Britain was a world first when she was launched at Bristol in 1843. This uniquely successful passenger ship design brought together the leading technologies of the day (screw propeller, iron hull and 1,0
This book offers a comprehensive history of the Czechoslovak Ocean Shipping Company (C. O. S.) from its beginning in the late 1940s until the fall of communism. Owned by the Czechoslovak state, C. O. S.'s activities were shaped by Soviet standards. This unique study is structured according to the different phases of the Cold War and highlights the political aspects that determined C. O. S.'s fate.Lenka Kratka focuses on two contradictory economic dimensions that C. O. S. had to engage with. Being part of the planned economy of a socialist state, it also dealt with companies in the capitalist West. Another paradoxical aspect of C. O. S. emerges from the memories of former Czechoslovak seamen, who experienced relative freedom when being aboard and strict communist regime control while at home with their families. Kratka's book offers fascinating insights into a neglected topic, using thus far untapped sources and building on primary research in oral history and personal memory.
Racundra's First Cruise is Arthur Ransome's account of Racundra's maiden voyage, which took place in August and September 1922. The cruise took him from Riga, in Latvia to Helsingfors (Helsinki) in Finland, via the Moon Sound and Reval (Tallinn) in Estonia and back. His first book on sailing, it was also the first of his titles that achieved such high levels of success. Although reprinted many times in various editions and formats, Fernhurst Books' hardback edition of the title (2003) was the first to use the original text in its entirety - with the original layout, maps and photographs - and also includes an excellent introduction by Brian Hammett containing a treasure trove of previously unpublished writings, essays and photographs. Ransome's first attempts at Baltic sailing, in his two previous boats, Slug and Kittiwake, are also explained in detail using his writings and illustrations. The life of Ransome's beloved Racundra is chronicled to its conclusion and there is an explanation of how he came to write the book. The original illustrations are enhanced by the inclusion of present day photographs of the same locations. Having gone out of print in 2012, this new paperback edition retains all of the original and additional features; bringing back to life Ransome's epic first cruise in his pride and joy, his treasured Racundra.
Marking the centenary of the Titanic disaster, 'Titanic Lives' is a fresh investigation of the lives of the passengers and crew on board the most famous ship in history. On the night of 14 April 1912, midway through her maiden voyage, the seemingly unsinkable Titanic hit an iceberg, sustaining a 300-feet gash as six compartments were wrenched open to the Atlantic Ocean. In little over two hours, the palatial liner nose-dived to the bottom of the sea. More than 1,500 people perished in the freezing waters. But who were they? In this impeccably researched and utterly riveting social history, Richard Davenport-Hines brings to life the stories of the men who built and owned the Titanic, the crew who serviced her and the passengers of all classes who sailed on her. We are introduced to this fascinating cast of characters and follow their lives on board the ship through to the supreme dramatic climax of the disaster. Universally critically acclaimed, 'Titanic Lives' is the must-read Titanic book of the centenary year.
The story of John Devoy's 1876 Catalpa rescue is a tale of heroism, creativity, and the triumph of independent spirit in pursuit of freedom. The daily log on board the whaling ship Catalpa begins with the typical recount of a crew intact and a spirit unfettered, but such quiet words deceive the truth of the audacious enterprise that came to be known as one of the most important rescues in Irish American history. John Devoy's men aided in the break-in and subsequent rescue of Irish political prisoners from the Australian coast, allowing millions of fellow Irishmen and American-Feninans, many of whom secretly financed the dangerous plot, to draw courage from the newly exiled prisoners. Philip Fennell and Marie King, both descendants of pardoned Fenian prisoner, tell the story from the John Devoy's own records and from the ship's logbooks. John Devoy's Catalpa Expedition includes an introduction by Terry Golway and the personal diaries, letters, and reports from John Devoy and his men.
What motivated the 16th century explorers? The question is a vexed one the world over. To this day, a troubled folkloric status hangs about the better-known names. Many of the Tudor explorers set sail from the South West peninsula. Morpurgo, with his own deep connections to the Dorset coast, unearths the stories behind little-known key figures Stephen Borough and John Davis, and their brilliant navigational teacher, John Dee, inventor of the 'paradoxall compass'. Morpurgo dramatises an episode in Drake's circumnavigation during which the Golden Hind was stranded on a rock off Celebes, Indonesia. What altercation occurred between Drake and the ship's chaplain, Francis Fletcher, during those terrifying twenty hours? Morpurgo makes a compelling argument for what was really at the heart of that disagreement, and its present-day repercussions. He argues that the Tudor navigators and their stories may hold the key to how we should approach the current environmental crisis. This is the Age of Discovery as you've never heard it before.
A discerning account of simmering conflict in the South China Sea and why the world can't afford to be indifferent China's rise has upset the global balance of power, and the first place to feel the strain is Beijing's back yard: the South China Sea. For decades tensions have smoldered in the region, but today the threat of a direct confrontation among superpowers grows ever more likely. This important book is the first to make clear sense of the South Sea disputes. Bill Hayton, a journalist with extensive experience in the region, examines the high stakes involved for rival nations that include Vietnam, India, Taiwan, the Philippines, and China, as well as the United States, Russia, and others. Hayton also lays out the daunting obstacles that stand in the way of peaceful resolution. Through lively stories of individuals who have shaped current conflicts-businessmen, scientists, shippers, archaeologists, soldiers, diplomats, and more-Hayton makes understandable the complex history and contemporary reality of the South China Sea. He underscores its crucial importance as the passageway for half the world's merchant shipping and one-third of its oil and gas. Whoever controls these waters controls the access between Europe, the Middle East, South Asia, and the Pacific. The author critiques various claims and positions (that China has historic claim to the Sea, for example), overturns conventional wisdoms (such as America's overblown fears of China's nationalism and military resurgence), and outlines what the future may hold for this clamorous region of international rivalry.
The maritime issues facing South Asia include boundary problems, fisheries conflicts, non-military/non-traditional security threats and environmental problems. This study seeks to facilitate solutions to these problems through regional cooperation. It seeks to base South Asian maritime cooperation on the 1982 Law Of the Sea Convention (LOSC). Given the fact that ships carry much of international trade it posits the emerging regionalization of the South Asian economy under the South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA) Agreement as providing the most fundamental rationale for initiating maritime cooperation under SAARC. Given the slow progress in institutionalizing maritime cooperation within SAARC, this study also considers the possibility of institutionalizing South Asian maritime cooperation independently of SAARC yet complementary to it. This study examines efforts at India-Pakistan and India-Sri Lanka bilateral maritime cooperation, seeking to build South Asian maritime cooperation from the bottom up, based on these two sets of bilateral relationships. Through comparative analysis of efforts at India-Pakistan and India-Sri Lanka bilateral maritime cooperation, fisheries and non-military/non-traditional security cooperation emerged as areas of common to both. This study argues that these areas ought to be included in the evolving agenda for South Asian maritime cooperation. At the same time, given the international character of the maritime domain, efforts must be made to coordinate evolving South Asian maritime cooperation with similar efforts on the neighbouring regions and the world. Published in association with Regional Centre for Strategic Studies, Colombo.
Nusantaria - often referred to as 'Maritime Southeast Asia' - is the world's largest archipelago and has, for centuries, been a vital cultural and trading hub. Nusantara, a Sanskrit, then Malay, word referring to an island realm, is here adapted to become Nusantaria - denoting a slightly wider world but one with a single linguistic, cultural and trading base. Nusantaria encompasses the lands and shores created by the melting of the ice following the last Ice Age. These have long been primarily the domain of the Austronesian-speaking peoples and their seafaring traditions. The surrounding waters have always been uniquely important as a corridor connecting East Asia to India, the Middle East, Europe and Africa. In this book, Philip Bowring provides a history of the world's largest and most important archipelago and its adjacent coasts. He tells the story of the peoples and lands located at this crucial maritime and cultural crossroads, from its birth following the last Ice Age to today.
SS Terra Nova was most famous for being the vessel to carry the ill-fated 1910 polar expedition led by Robert Falcon Scott, but the story of this memorable ship, built in wood to enable flexibility in the ice, continued until 1943, when she sank off Greenland. This newly designed and updated edition presents the definitive illustrated account of one of the classic polar exploration ships of the 'heroic age'. Put together from accounts recorded by the men who sailed in her, it tells the sixty-year history of a ship built by a famous Scottish shipbuilding yard, in the nineteenth-century days of whaling and sealing before coal gas and electricity replaced animal oils.
An extraordinary story of survival and alliance during World War II: the icy journey of four Allied ships crossing the Arctic to deliver much needed supplies to the Soviet war effort. On the fourth of July, 1942, four Allied ships traversing the Arctic split from their decimated convoy to head further north into the ice field of the North Pole. They were seeking safety from Nazi bombers and U-boats in the perilous white maze of ice floes, growlers, and giant bergs. Despite the many risks of their chosen route, the four vessels had a better chance of reaching their destination than the rest of the remains of convoy PQ-17. The convoy had started as a fleet of thirty-five cargo ships carrying $1 billion worth of war supplies to the Soviet port of Archangel--the only help Roosevelt and Churchill had extended to Joseph Stalin to maintain their fragile alliance against Germany. At the most dangerous point of the voyage, the ships had received a startling order to scatter and had quickly become easy prey for the Nazis. The crews of the four ships focused on their mission. U.S. Navy Ensign Howard Carraway, aboard the SS Troubadour, was a farm boy from South Carolina and one of the many Americans for whom the convoy was a first taste of war; from the Royal Navy Reserve, Lt. Leo Gradwell was given command of the HMT Ayrshire, a British fishing trawler that had been converted into an antisubmarine vessel. The twenty-four-hour Arctic daylight in midsummer gave them no respite from bombers or submarines, and they all feared the giant German battleship Tirpitz, nicknamed the "Big Bad Wolf." Icebergs were as dangerous as Nazis as the remnants of convoy PQ-17 tried to slip through the Arctic to deliver their cargo in one of the most dramatic escapes of World War II. At Archangel they found a traumatized, starving city, and a disturbing preview of the Cold War ahead.
On 22 September 1914 between 6.20am and 7.55am three British cruisers went down off the Dutch coast, HMS Aboukir, Hogue and Cressy. Of the combined crew of 2296 no less than 1459 men perished on their ships or in the sea. There were 837 survivors. The perpetrator was a simple German submarine, U-9. This event in the early days of the First World War came as a big boost to the Germans. But for the British it was a dire blow, the biggest loss ever inflicted on the Royal Navy, hitherto deemed invincible. The suffering was the more grievous now that among the fatalities were thirteen young boys, aged 15 and 16, while most of the other victims were reservists, mainly young family fathers from a few villages in the Chatham area. After some years of research the author has written a uniquely accessible reconstruction of this tragedy. Successively he pictures the build-up to this calamity, the crew's trials and tribulations, as well as the consequences of the incident from both a British and a German point of view. The hard times of the crewmembers had to go through are reflected in the personal accounts of some of the survivors of the catastrophe. Two Dutch merchant vessels had rescued a number of them and the men were then received and looked after in Holland. That too is part of this pitiful tragedy, which, though almost forgotten, was one of the largest calamities ever in the history of naval warfare.
Pack your cutlass and blunderbuss--it's time to go a-pirating "The Invisible Hook" takes readers inside the wily world of late seventeenth- and early eighteenth-century pirates. With swashbuckling irreverence and devilish wit, Peter Leeson uncovers the hidden economics behind pirates' notorious, entertaining, and sometimes downright shocking behavior. Why did pirates fly flags of Skull & Bones? Why did they create a "pirate code"? Were pirates really ferocious madmen? And what made them so successful? "The Invisible Hook" uses economics to examine these and other infamous aspects of piracy. Leeson argues that the pirate customs we know and love resulted from pirates responding rationally to prevailing economic conditions in the pursuit of profits.
"The Invisible Hook" looks at legendary pirate captains like Blackbeard, Black Bart Roberts, and Calico Jack Rackam, and shows how pirates' search for plunder led them to pioneer remarkable and forward-thinking practices. Pirates understood the advantages of constitutional democracy--a model they adopted more than fifty years before the United States did so. Pirates also initiated an early system of workers' compensation, regulated drinking and smoking, and in some cases practiced racial tolerance and equality. Leeson contends that pirates exemplified the virtues of vice--their self-seeking interests generated socially desirable effects and their greedy criminality secured social order. Pirates proved that anarchy could be organized.
Revealing the democratic and economic forces propelling history's most colorful criminals, "The Invisible Hook" establishes pirates' trailblazing relevance to the contemporary world.
This book explores the historical and archaeological evidence of the relationships between a coastal community and the shipwrecks that have occurred along the southern Australian shoreline over the last 160 years. It moves beyond a focus on shipwrecks as events and shows the short and long term economic, social and symbolic significance of wrecks and strandings to the people on the shoreline. This volume draws on extensive oral histories, documentary and archaeological research to examine the tensions within the community, negotiating its way between its roles as shipwreck saviours and salvors.
WINNER OF THE WOLFSON HISTORY PRIZE 2020 A SUNDAY TIMES, FINANCIAL TIMES, THE TIMES AND BBC HISTORY MAGAZINE BOOK OF THE YEAR For most of human history, the seas and oceans have been the main means of long-distance trade and communication between peoples - for the spread of ideas and religion as well as commerce. This book traces the history of human movement and interaction around and across the world's greatest bodies of water, charting our relationship with the oceans from the time of the first voyagers. David Abulafia begins with the earliest of seafaring societies - the Polynesians of the Pacific, the possessors of intuitive navigational skills long before the invention of the compass, who by the first century were trading between their far-flung islands. By the seventh century, trading routes stretched from the coasts of Arabia and Africa to southern China and Japan, bringing together the Indian Ocean and the western Pacific and linking half the world through the international spice trade. In the Atlantic, centuries before the little kingdom of Portugal carved out its powerful, seaborne empire, many peoples sought new lands across the sea - the Bretons, the Frisians and, most notably, the Vikings, now known to be the first Europeans to reach North America. As Portuguese supremacy dwindled in the late sixteenth century, the Spanish, the Dutch and then the British each successively ruled the waves. Following merchants, explorers, pirates, cartographers and travellers in their quests for spices, gold, ivory, slaves, lands for settlement and knowledge of what lay beyond, Abulafia has created an extraordinary narrative of humanity and the oceans. From the earliest forays of peoples in hand-hewn canoes through uncharted waters to the routes now taken daily by supertankers in their thousands, The Boundless Sea shows how maritime networks came to form a continuum of interaction and interconnection across the globe: 90 per cent of global trade is still conducted by sea. This is history of the grandest scale and scope, and from a bracingly different perspective - not, as in most global histories, from the land, but from the boundless seas.
Britain traded with many nations throughout history and the bulk of that trade was by sea. To make this possible our merchant seafarers formed a mighty force which was large throughout the nineteenth century and reached its peak in the 1960s. Though seemingly one body, it comprised many individual companies, each of which evolved its own traditions and identity. This book is a celebration of this achievement and an attempt at chronicling these characteristics that give the industry both corporate identity and an element of individuality. The rapid diminution of the British-flagged fleet in recent years has all but extinguished this structure and those who had intimate experience of it are now ageing and their memories fading. We cannot stand in the way of progress, but it is disappointing that so little of this story has previously been recorded. Heraldry of the Oceans will, at least in part, make up for this omission.
The second volume of The Lion and The Eagle covers the months between the outbreak of war in 1914 and the conclusion of the 'Clearing of the Seas' in the Spring of 1915. This relatively short timespan encompassed a disproportionately large number of naval actions and campaigns that spanned every ocean of the globe and represented the most intensive, and extensive, period of naval warfare in the entire conflict. The account covers the disastrous, for the British, escape of the Goeben to Turkey, the Battle of the Heligoland Bight, and the subsequent East Coast raids that culminated in the Battle of the Dogger Bank. Outside the European sphere, it describes the prolonged operations involved in disposing of Germany's overseas detachments and countering their war against trade. The battles of Coronel and the Falkland Islands are fully related and re-assessed, as is the epic cruise of the Emden. Essentially, this is a history of the period when the two flawed titans, Churchill and Fisher, were at the helm of naval affairs in the British Admiralty, and when Germany had its greatest opportunities to dispute Britain's maritime supremacy.
Few images are as evocative as the silhouette of the Arab dhow as, under full sail, it tacks to windward on glittering waters of Red Sea before moving across the face of the rising or setting sun. In this authoritative new book, Dionisius A. Agius, one of the foremost scholars of Islamic material culture, offers a lucid and wide-ranging history of the iconic dhow from medieval to modern times. Traversing the Arabian and African coasts, he shows that the dhow was central not just to commerce but to the vital transmission and exchange of ideas. Discussing trade and salt routes, shoals and wind patterns, spice harvest seasons and the deep and resonant connection between language, memory and oral tradition, this is the first book to place the dhow in its full and remarkable cultural contexts.
The history of the Clyde and the great ships that were built there is well known. Less familiar and equally important, however, is the story of how the great river was made suitable for shipping. The dredging of the Clyde and the building of the great docks and quays that line it to this day remain some of the most impressive engineering feats of the industrial revolution. From prehistoric times to the twentieth century, John Riddell explores fully this fascinating saga, the great monuments of which still define the city of Glasgow and the towns on the banks of the Clyde. At the same time The Clyde is also the story of the extraordinary plans and proposals that were never realised; schemes which stand as a testament to the power and wealth of Britain's Second City during its Victorian and Edwardian heyday.
This book discusses memorials - stained glass windows, church, cemetery and public monuments - commemorating British seafarers, shipbuilders and victims of shipwreck from the sixteenth century to the present. Examples have been chosen mainly from Great Britain and Ireland with a few from wider afield. They include important works by major British artists as well as more modest productions by anonymous carvers. The book retells the dramatic stories behind them, illustrating significant social and cultural changes in Britain's relationship to the sea. Memorials vividly illustrate the hazards of seagoing life and the impact these had both upon the family of the deceased and the general public. The book has a cultural historical focus. Each chapter includes case studies of both high status and popular memorials, showing how iconography such as the depiction of the wrecked ship was widely transmitted. The book covers both naval and commercial aspects of seafaring and includes memorials to naval officers, merchants, explorers, fishermen, leisure sailors, victims of shipwrecks and lifesavers, with around 100 illustrations of memorials. Barbara Tomlinson was Curator of Antiquities at Royal Museums Greenwich (part of which is the National Maritime Museum) for over thirty-five years and is Hon. Secretary of the Church Monuments Society. Published in association with the National Maritime Museum, part of Royal Museums Greenwich.
At dawn on 27 April 1789 Fletcher Christian, master's mate on HMS Bounty, took a coconut to quench his thirst from the supply on the quarterdeck. This seemingly insignificant act resulted in mutiny, chaos and a chain of events that leads right up to the present day. With a story driven by hazardous and extraordinary sea voyages and a cast that includes the Bounty mutineers, an eccentric lesbian aristocrat, Pitcairn Island sex offenders and the narrator's ancient mother, this sparkling and original book weaves together fact and fiction, history and autobiography, humour and danger in inimitable style.
Life at sea in the nineteenth century was demanding and perilous. Seamen had to be able to rely on those around them. This was easier said than done. The sea could be, and still is, a place of constant and unpredictable danger, whether by storm, shipboard disease or threat from the crew. Stories of unimaginable cruelties inflicted upon crews by savage officers and treacheries committed by mutinous crews were the soap operas of the day. People followed the trials in the newspapers, hanging hungrily on to each new piece of detail. Tales of suffering, hardship and treachery were thrilling to those on land but also replete with piteous infamy.
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