Fighting Ships of the U.S. Navy 1883-2019, Volume One - Fleet Carriers
Fighting Ships of the US Navy is a series dedicated to exploring each ship in the US Navy’s inventory since 1883. In Volume One, the author, Venner F Milewski, Jr., starts with the Fleet Aircraft Carriers in the beginning. Overall, the book has a plethora of data and information of each aircraft carrier used by the US during the last 100 years starting with the USS Langley. Taking a look at the Table of contents shows what I mean:
- Langley Class (CV-1)
- Lexington Class (CV2, CV-3)
- Ranger Class (CV-4)
- Yorktown Class (CV-5/56, CV-8)
- Wasp Class (CV-7)
- Essex Class (CV-9 to 21, 31 to 40, 45 to 47, 50 to 55)
- Independence Class (CVL-22 to 30)
- Midway Class (CVB-42, CVB-43, CV-44, CVB-56, CVB-57)
- Saipan Class (CVL-48/49)
- United States Class (CVB-58)
- Forrestal Class (CVA-59 to 62
- Kitty Hawk Class (CVA-63, CVA-64, CVA-66)
- Enterprise Class (CVAN-65, CVAN-66)
- John F. Kennedy Class (CVA-67)
- Nimitz Class (CVAN-68, CVN-69 to 77)
- Unnamed Class (CVV)
- Gerald R. Ford Class (CVN-78 to 80)
- Camouflage Design Sheets
- Ship’s Name Index
Under each Class is a record of each ship of the class so in all there are over 80 ships individually described and with excellent photographic coverage. Each ship also has a data sheet describing size, armament, engineering factors and also the fate of the ship. Did I mention the photos? For a modeler, these are gold. While there are some stock shots, most are operational photos showing use, camouflage and action which is great for modelers. And this goes from the USS Langley (CV-1) sinking to the USS Gerald Ford (CVN-78) and USS John F Kennedy (CVN-79) under construction and trials. Plus, all the ships in between.
Let’s take a look at a particular ship and for this, I chose CVN-70, USS Carl Vinson. There is a small history containing the congressional authorization, sponsor and first commanding officer. There are 10 specific pictures, each with a detailed caption. All pictures are black and white. The pictures range from the early 1980’s when the ship became active until as late as 2018. You can see the different configurations due to upgrades. There is a great picture at Pearly Harbor next to the Arizona Memorial. The class specification for the Vinson is located at the end of the class so in this case, they are located at the end of CVN-77 and contain all the necessary specification for each ship of the class. This is duplicated for each ship, even those that were never built.
There are a couple other excellent things in the book, In the beginning, there is a glossary of terms and it explains the codes for the ships and things on them. There is a Camouflage section explaining the different measures and what they mean by specific colors. Also included is Camouflage Design Sheets showing which carriers had which measure. Lastly, there are drawings of each carrier containing these Measures and what the camouflage looked like with both left and right profiles.
This is a fascinating book with great information about America’s carriers and their design. It is a great historical read and for modelers contains a wealth of information to get started. Recommended.
My thanks to Casemate Publishers for the opportunity to review this great book.