TL-191: Navy Blue and Gray - Naval Forces of the USA and CSA

This thread has been made so that more justice can be done to the naval warfare of the Great Wars and before, as it is a subject that deserve fuller attention. The naval theaters of the First and Second Great War were, if its possible, even larger and harder fought than in our own timeline, with a larger array of sea powers, and a more balanced set of adversaries.

Here we can discuss uniforms for the USN and CSN, as well as their ships and the battles that defined the wars at sea. A general focus on the years from 1900-1945 will be assumed, but the entire period from the TL-191 POD is open for imagination.

 
I already have more than a few ideas. Aside from the obvious, discussing ships and the uniforms, I also wanted to examine personalities, and maybe flesh out the actual fighting, like the Battle of Three Navies.
 
Would this count?

The USS Monitor at sea. The Monitor, the first Union ironclad, is most famous for her central role in the Battle of Hampton Roads against the Confederate CSS Virginia. The four-hour battle officially ended in a draw and a turning point in naval warfare. While the CSS Virginia was destroyed by her own crew to stop her from being captured, the Monitor would stay in office service, with action seen in the Second Mexican American War, becoming a symbol of Union naval engineering and might before becoming a museum.

 
I already have more than a few ideas. Aside from the obvious, discussing ships and the uniforms, I also wanted to examine personalities, and maybe flesh out the actual fighting, like the Battle of Three Navies.
Personalties? You mean the admirals, captains, and seamen of the navies, right?
 
Would this count?
Mhm.The US Navy after the Civil War can be discussed.


Personalties? You mean the admirals, captains, and seamen of the navies, right?
Mmm. WE know about a few. Bradley Fiske, George Dewey, William Halsey, and so on. But one wonders who else might have been involved. ANd you really don't hear much about the COnfederate Navy aside from the Weekly Adventures of the CSS Bonefish.
 
I also wanted to [...] flesh out the actual fighting, like the Battle of Three Navies.
Yes. The Battle of the Three Navies, and the invasion of the Sandwich Islands by the United States prior to the battle itself, would probably be one of the more dramatic naval episodes of the Great War. Unlike our timeline, this timeline would have multiple "big guns" battles in both the Pacific and the Atlantic.

With the British squadron neutralized at Pearl Harbor from a surprise US naval attack, US marines and sailors landing on Oahu, and the dramatic destruction of the "Concrete Battleship" protecting the entrance to Pearl Harbor, the Sandwich Islands would be a target for the British to retake. With help from the Japanese they would hope to do just that.

Like Jutland, it was somewhat inconclusive, but strategically the US Navy was victorious, holding its own against two of the world's most vaunted navies and holding on to the Sandwich Islands for the remainder of the war and beyond. At least as far as the US is concerned this was a far better outcome than what happened at Jutland in the North Sea, with the German High Seas Fleet unable to breakout in masse into the Atlantic.

We get hints to the scale of the battle itself, but it seems unclear whether or not the Japanese or British Fleets took on significant damage. I'd say that the US fleet here took on more damage and possibly outnumbered, but again I'm unsure. While it is implied that the US Pacific Fleet took quite a battering, they were able to return to their ports in Pearl Harbor to repair, with the Sandwich Islands still in their hands. So, something must have happened to make the Japanese and British turn back.

We also get names for ships as well for the US Navy --- USS Dakota, USS Missoula, and USS New York, with Dakota's famous "death ride" of going between the Japanese and British navies, guns blazing.

If you and anyone has any ideas for how the battle unfolded, please share! Big gun battles during this time period are my absolute favorite.
 
If you and anyone has any ideas for how the battle unfolded, please share! Big gun battles during this time period are my absolute favorite.
I do have a plan to maybe do an "article" style thing on how they turned out, though I would like to hash things out first. I can say that I do think there were multiple battleships sunk, as Sylvia ENos mentions battleships that were sunk in her thoughts after reading about it. As well, from the description, we have some idea of what hte ships are like. Missoula, for example, when Carsten's pov describes it sinking, sounds a lot like the real one.



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Montana_(ACR-13)
 
I do have a plan to maybe do an "article" style thing on how they turned out, though I would like to hash things out first. I can say that I do think there were multiple battleships sunk, as Sylvia ENos mentions battleships that were sunk in her thoughts after reading about it. As well, from the description, we have some idea of what hte ships are like. Missoula, for example, when Carsten's pov describes it sinking, sounds a lot like the real one.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Montana_(ACR-13)
I'd say that for a clash like this, there were multiple ships that were both sunk and heavily damaged. I suspect the US Pacific Fleet was outnumbered here, or at least on par with the Combined British-Japanese fleet numerically, depending on how many ships both fleets brought with them. I also suspect that the Japanese actually brought a larger portion of ships to the fight compared to the British. The Battle of Jutland and the Battle of the Three Navies are only a month apart and the British brought with them a sizable fleet to confront the German High Seas Fleet.

Oh! That's a nice looking USS Missoula. I found some pictures of the USS New York (BB-34) as well! It would have been one the US Navy's newest battleships at this time.

Link to the ship.

USS_New_York-1.jpg


^^^ --- 1915.

USS_New_York-2.jpg


^^^ --- 1916, in OTL Hampton Roads.
 
I'd say that for a clash like this, there were multiple ships that were both sunk and heavily damaged. I suspect the US Pacific Fleet was outnumbered here, or at least on par with the Combined British-Japanese fleet numerically, depending on how many ships both fleets brought with them. I also suspect that the Japanese actually brought a larger portion of ships to the fight compared to the British. The Battle of Jutland and the Battle of the Three Navies are only a month apart and the British brought with them a sizable fleet to confront the German High Seas Fleet.

Oh! That's a nice looking USS Missoula. I found some pictures of the USS New York (BB-34) as well! It would have been one the US Navy's newest battleships at this time.
I wondered that myself. I do think that the British would have had a sizeable force there, thought they also took heavy losses at Pearl Harbor in 1914.. OTL they had 31 dreadnought battleships and 12 battlecruisers at the time of Jutland, and I might increase that number ITTL given that they had a significant threat from the US. YOu might have seen them go ahead with the nixed plan to have the Dominions all helping to pay for more ships.

I also think that the Dakota might have been one of the earlier dreadnoughts, since i recall seeing sometime in Breakthroughs that it mentioned hte Dakota having 12in guns.
 
I wondered that myself. I do think that the British would have had a sizeable force there, thought they also took heavy losses at Pearl Harbor in 1914.. OTL they had 31 dreadnought battleships and 12 battlecruisers at the time of Jutland, and I might increase that number ITTL given that they had a significant threat from the US. YOu might have seen them go ahead with the nixed plan to have the Dominions all helping to pay for more ships.
Yes. Of course the Royal Navy is a massive and formidable force even in this timeline. I'd argue that in some way it may even be more potent and more numerous to an extent in this timeline, having to content with a very hostile United States Navy, as well as other smaller navies from, say, South America. It would have to match the navies of Japan, Germany, and France as well.

For the Battle of the Three Navies, we may have seen the destruction and/or capture of an entire naval squadron at Pearl Harbor, which may have included Royal Navy dreadnoughts. The Sandwich Islands would have been a very strategic location for the British and likely the headquarters of some kind of new "pacific naval command". The US victory here would have been a stunning blow.

In preparation to take back the islands the British would definitely have to pool its strength from the other squadrons based in the Indian Ocean, Singapore, in China, and from the ships of the then new Royal Australian Navy other dominions. Battlecruisers, light cruisers, and destroyers would likely make up a good portion of the British contingent, but perhaps there would have also been dreadnoughts as well, though I imagine the Royal Navy would have to transfer a few to the Pacific in preparation for this battle. This is all guessing though. We may be able to get a much better idea based on the actual squadrons deployed in the Pacific in OTL.
 
For the Japanese contingent of this battle --- in terms of dreadnoughts, battlecruisers, and cruisers, it may be a bit easier to discern which ships from which fleets might have participated.

We would perhaps see the force of the Combined Fleet (IJN 1st and 2nd Fleets) deployed for this fight, but I am not certain of this. Japanese doctrine at the time of the Great War (ITTL) would likely emphasize the importance of the "decisive battle". In our timeline the Japanese Fleet was convinced of this doctrine through its experiences at Tsushima. In TL-191, it may have also gotten this idea based on its victories against the Spanish Pacific Squadron.

Given the unique nature of the battle in terms of the Japanese fighting along side the British, it is also likely the Japanese would deploy its dreadnoughts in a decisive battle against the US Pacific Fleet, or at least an element of it. its going to be a heavyweight fight either way you slice it.

While I am unsure as to the make of the Japanese Fleet at this time, I'm certain that a few classes of dreadnoughts and battlecruisers would be deployed against the Americans:

Japanese_battleship_Kawachi_in_early_postcard.jpg


^^^ --- Kawachi-class battleship

Fuso_trial.jpg


^^^ --- Fuso-class battleship

d2f616443848a481c9cee5b036de5165.jpg


^^^ --- Kongo-class battlecruiser (before reconstruction as battleships)
 
I also think that the Dakota might have been one of the earlier dreadnoughts, since i recall seeing sometime in Breakthroughs that it mentioned hte Dakota having 12in guns.
Any idea as to what might look like then, it really was a pre-dreadnought? What class would best fit the USS Dakota? Did 12 in. guns on a ship indicate it as a pre-dreadnought all the time?
 
I found this image of a Confederate Battleship from the Hodder & Stoughton edition of The Grapple. Sorry for the size.
Hah, I remember seeing this cover in my bookstore!

You know, I'll give the Confederates some credit here, I imagine them to at least have some decent surface ships in its arsenal by the time of the Second Great War, especially for operations in the Caribbean, where the Confederate Navy would most likely be the most active in. It was able to invade the Bahamas and Haiti after all and operations like that would surely require a good level of naval support.
 
Any idea as to what might look like then, it really was a pre-dreadnought? What class would best fit the USS Dakota? Did 12 in. guns on a ship indicate it as a pre-dreadnought all the time?
Maybe something like the Delaware class battleship U.S.S. North Dakota? She had 12 inch guns.
 
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