This authoritative register brings together a wealth of detailed historical and technical information about all the major combat ships in the U. S. Navy--from the sail frigates of the Revolution to today's nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and submarines, from the ships of George Washington to the fleet that fought Operation Desert Storm. Conceived and developed by K. Jack Bauer before his death, and extended and brought up-to-date by Stephen S. Roberts, this reference guide is designed for the general student of American naval history, for military historians, for navy/ship buffs, and indeed for all who thirst for interesting information about American ships over the last 300 years. The volume contains tables, notes, sixty-eight photographs, a list of ship and engine builders, and indexes to the hull numbers and names of all ships included in the volume.
The register provides a brief introduction and then covers the Sail Navy (1775-1853), the Old Steam Navy (1814-1876), and the New Navy (1883 to present). Ships are arranged by type and then chronologically by date of authorization. The entry for each class begins with a listing of the key technical specifications, including important changes in armament. Next comes a table listing all the ships in the class with their builders and construction dates, and final disposition. The entry concludes with notes containing other essential information, including reconstructions, renamings, and reclassifications. In many cases these notes also indicate why the ships were built and point to the significance of their designs. Merchant ships acquired for service as major combatants are also described in an abbreviated format.