The "Original Six" frigates were commissioned by the new-born US Navy at a staggering cost of $688,888.82. Designed to be light and fast, these warships enabled America to project its power across the globe. Among the ships Mark Lardas examines is USS Constellation: the first ship to be commissioned by the United States Navy, and also the first ship to engage and capture an enemy vessel, the French L'Insurgente - this engagement is vividly portrayed in original color artwork. The fascinating history of the USS Chesapeake is also brought to life through the dramatic account one of the bloodiest duels in the age of fighting sail as the Chesapeake meets the British frigate Shannon and is overwhelmed, the dying cry of the captain, "Don't give up the ship " inspired the US Navy thereafter. Alongside stirring accounts of engagements during the Barbary Wars and the Quasi-War, the author explores the design and development of these frigates, explaining the shortcomings that led to their replacement by larger, heavier 44-gun models by 1800. Contemporary illustrations of US frigates and their British and French rivals help to place these ships in the context of European ship design, clearly showing the escalation of the naval 'arms race' during the seventeenth century. American Light and Medium Frigates is an ideal resource for any naval enthusiast wanting to learn more about the ships that witnessed the rise of the US Navy and Marines.
About the Author
Mark Lardas is the author of numerous books on maritime and Texas history. A longtime resident of Texas, he has maintained an interest in the Texas maritime history, including shipwrecks. With generous assistance from and in cooperation with the Institute of Nautical Archeology at Texas A&M University, and numerous museums throughout the state of Texas, he has pulled together a fascinating collection of images to illustrate Texas's maritime history as seen from its shipwrecks from Cabeza de Vaca's first shipwreck in 1528 through the 21st century.
Innes McCartney is an historian and nautical archaeologist, specializing in 20th-century naval vessels. He lectures widely on a number of associated subjects. A passion for shipwrecks has led to some famous discoveries, including the submarine M1 and the battlecruiser "HMS Indefatigable," His previous book, "Lost Patrols" detailed his uncovering the 121 submarines sunk in the English Channel. His own underwater photography illustrates this book. The author lives in Cornwall, UK.
Tony Bryan is a freelance illustrator of many years' experience who lives and works in Dorset. He initially qualified in Engineering and worked for a number of years in Military Research and Development, and has a keen interest in military hardware - armor, small arms, aircraft and ships. Tony has produced many illustrations for partworks, magazines and books, including a number of titles in the New Vanguard series. Tony Bryan lives in Dorset, UK.
Gordon L Rottman entered the US Army in 1967, volunteered for Special Forces and trained as a weapons specialist. He served in the 5th Special Forces Group in Vietnam in 1969-70 and in airborne infantry, patrol and intelligence. He was a special operations forces scenario writer at the Joint Readiness Training Center for 12 years and is now a freelance writer. The author lives in Cypress, Texas.
Ian Palmer is a highly experienced digital artist. A graduate in 3D design, he currently works as a senior artist for a leading UK games developer. Besides his artistic interests he is also a keen musician and motorcyclist. He lives in West London with his wife and three cats.
Born in Faenza in 1963, and from an early age taking an interest in all things military, Giuseppe Rava has established himself as a leading military history artist. Entirely self-taught, Giuseppe is inspired by the works of the great military artists, such as Detaille, Meissonier, Rochling, Lady Butler, Ottenfeld and Angus McBride. He lives and works in Italy.
"The full history and design of these interesting ships is covered in this volume. It is superbly illustrated by period works as well as by the artists chosen by Osprey for this title. It is an excellent book on a most interesting subject and one that I am positive you will find to be of interest. One that will be pulled from the shelves time after time and one I can highly recommend to you." -Scott Van Aken, Modeling Madness (September 2008)