Why the Chinese play cricket: 1870-1899 (an Imperial Federation timeline)

Imperial Japanese Navy 1870 to 1904

A quick note on the fleet lists. When I first post these, I deliberately avoid giving details of individual ship's fates for events which I haven't posted yet. For example, there will be a Russo-Japanese War ITTL, I have gamed out the battles and some of these ships will be lost, but I haven't included details here. I edit the lists to include these details when the events are posted. This partly to avoid 'spoilers' and partly because I might change things.

Battleships

Kongo class
2,200 tons, 2 (3) x 6.7" BL, 3 (6) x 6" BL, 1 (2) x 14” TT, 4.5" Iron belt, 0" deck, 14 knots CE FT Coal
- Kongo, ordered 1875, commissioned 1878
- Hiei, ordered 1785, commissioned 1878, lost Sino-Japanese War

Wakasa class
12,200 tons, 4 x 12" BL barbette, 4 (8) x 4.7", 1 (4) x 14” TT 1 fwd, 1 stn, 18" Compound belt, 3" Compound deck, 16 knots TE FT Coal
- Wakasa, ordered 1889, commissioned 1893
- Noto, ordered 1889, commissioned 1893

Fuji class
12,500 tons, 4 x 12", 5 (10) x 6", 2 (5) x 18” TT 1 fwd, 1, 14" Compound belt, 2.5" Compound deck, 18 knots TE FT Coal
- Fuji, ordered 1894, commissioned 189
- Yashimo, ordered 1894, commissioned 1897

Shikishima class
14,800 tons, 4 x 12", 7 (14) x 6", 2 (5) x 18” TT 1 fwd, 1, 9" Harvey belt, 2.5" Harvey deck, 18 knots TE FT Coal
- Shikishima, ordered 1896, commissioned 1900
- Hatsuse, ordered 1896, commissioned 1900

Asahi class
15,200 tons, 4 x 12", 7 (14) x 6", 10 (20) x 3”, 2 (4) x 18” TT, 1, 9" Harvey belt, 4" Harvey deck, 18 knots TE WT Coal
- Asahi, ordered 1898, commissioned 1901

Mikasa class
15,200 tons, 4 x 12", 7 (14) x 6", 10 (20) x 3”, 2 (4) x 18” TT, 1, 9" belt, 3" deck, 18 knots TE WT Coal
- Mikasa, ordered 1899, commissioned 1902

Kashima class
16,200 tons, 4 x 12", 2 (4) x 10”, 6 (12) x 6", 8 (16) x 3”, 2 (5) x 18” TT 1 fwd, 1, 9" belt, 2.5" deck, 18 knots TE WT Coal
- Kashima, ordered 1904, commissioned 1906
- Katori, ordered 1904, commissioned 1906

Armoured Cruisers

Chiyoda class
2,400 tons, 7 (10) x 4.7”, 1 (3) x 14” TT 1 fwd, 4.5" Nickel belt, 1.5" Nickel deck, 19 knots TE FT Coal
- Chiyoda, ordered 1887, commissioned 1890

Asama class
9,700 tons, 4 x 8”, 7 (14) x 6”, 2 (5) x 18” TT 1 stn, 7" Harvey belt, 2" Harvey deck, 21.5 knots TE FT Coal
- Asama, ordered 1896, commissioned 1899
- Tokawa, ordered 1896, commissioned 1899

Yakumo class
9,700 tons, 4 x 8”, 6 (12) x 6”, 2 (5) x 18” TT 1 stn, 7" belt, 2" deck, 20.5 knots TE FT Coal
- Yakumo, ordered 1897, commissioned 1900

Adzuma class
9,300 tons, 4 x 8”, 7 (14) x 6”, 2 (5) x 18” TT 1 stn, 7" belt, 2" deck, 20 knots TE WT Coal
- Adzuma, ordered 1897, commissioned 1900

Idzumo class
9,800 tons, 4 x 8", 7 (14) x 6", 6 (12) x 3”, 2 (4) x 18” TT, 1, 5" belt, 2.5" deck, 18 knots TE WT Coal
- Idzumo, ordered 1898, commissioned 1901
- Iwate, ordered 1898, commissioned 1901

Kasaga class
14,500 tons, 4 x 10", 8 (16) x 6”, 11 (22) x 3”, 2 (4) x 21” TT, 5" belt, 1.5" deck, 22 knots TE WT Coal
- Kasaga, ordered 1903, commissioned 1906, sold to US as Lake Champlain 1905
- Nisshin, ordered 1903, commissioned 1906, sold to Japan as Chippawa 1905
- Kasaga (ex US Lake Champlain), ordered 1902, commissioned 1905, purchased 1905
- Nisshin (ex US Chippawa), ordered 1902, commissioned 1905, purchased 1905

Tsubuka class
13,800 tons, 4 x 12", 6 (12) x 6", 6 (12) x 4.7”, 2 (4) x 18” TT, 1, 7" belt, 3" deck, 22 knots TE WT Coal
- Tsubuka, ordered 1904, commissioned 1907
- Ikoma, ordered 1904, commissioned 1908

Protected Cruisers

Naniwa class
3,700 tons, 2 x 10.3" BL barbette, 3 (6) x 6”, 2 (4) x 14” TT, 3" Compound slope, 2" Compound deck, 18.5 knots TE FT Coal
- Naniwa, ordered 1883, commissioned 1886
- Takachiho, ordered 1883, commissioned 1886

Matsushima class
4,200 tons, 1 x 12.6" BL barbette, 6 (11) x 4.7”, 2 (4) x 14” TT, 2” slope, 2" Compound deck, 16.5 knots TE FT Coal
- Matsushima, ordered 1888, commissioned 1891
- Itsukushima, ordered 1888, commissioned 1891
- Hashidate, ordered 1888, commissioned 1894

Akitsushima class
3,100 tons, 3(4) x 6”, 3 (6) x 4.7”, 2 (4) x 14” TT, 3" Nickel slope, 2" Nickel deck, 19 knots TE FT Coal
- Akitsushima, ordered 1890, commissioned 1892

Yoshino class
4,200 tons, 3 (4) x 6”, 3 (6) x 4.7”, 2 (4) x 14” TT, 4.5" Harvey slope, 2" Harvey deck, 23 knots
- Yoshino, ordered 1891, commissioned 1893

Idzumi class
2,900 tons, 2 x 10” BL, 3 (6) x 6” BL, 2 (5) x 15” TT 1 fwd, 1" Steel belt, 0.5" Steel deck, 18 knots TE WT Coal
- Idzumi (ex-Chilean Esmeralda), ordered 1881, commissioned 1884, purchased 1895

Sai En class
3,000 tons, 2 x 8” BL, 3 (6) x 6” BL, 2 (4) x 14” TT, 4" Compound slope, 3" Compound deck, 17 knots CE FT Coal
- Sai En (ex Qing Chi Yuan), ordered 1881, commissioned 1887, captured 1895

Suma class
2,700 tons, 2 x 6”, 3 (6) x 4.7”, 1 (2) x 15” TT, 2" Harvey slope, 1" Harvey deck, 20 knots TE WT Coal
- Suma, ordered 1892, commissioned 1896
- Akashi, ordered 1892, commissioned 1896

Asama class
9,700 tons, 4 x 8”, 7 (14) x 6”, 2 (5) x 18” TT 1 stn, 7" Harvey belt, 2" Harvey deck, 21.5 knots TE WT Coal
- Asama, ordered 1896, commissioned 1899
- Tokawa, ordered 1896, commissioned 1899

Takasago class
4,200 tons, 2 x 8”, 5 (10) x 4.7”, 2 (5) x 18” TT 1 bow, 4.5" slope, 2.5" Harvey deck, 24 knots TE WT Coal
- Takasago, ordered 1896, commissioned 1898

Chitose class
4,800 tons, 2 x 8”, 5 (10) x 4.7”, 2 (4) x 18” TT, 4.5" slope, 2.5" Harvey deck, 24 knots TE WT Coal
- Chitose, ordered 1897, commissioned 1899
- Kasagi, ordered 1897, commissioned 1899

Tsushima class
3,400 tons, 4 (6) x 6”, 5 (10) x 3”, 4.5" slope, 2.5" deck, 20 knots TE WT Coal
- Tsushima, ordered 1901, commissioned 1904
- Niitaka, ordered 1901, commissioned 1904

Otowa class
3,000 tons, 2 x 6”, 3 (3) x 4.7”, 2 (4) x 3”, 5" slope, 3" deck, 21 knots TE WT Coal
- Otowa, ordered 1903, commissioned 1904

Unprotected Cruisers

Seiki class
900 tons, 1 x 6” BL, 1 x 4.7” BL, 0" belt, 0" deck, 9 knots SE FT Coal
- Seiki, ordered 1873, commissioned 1876, wrecked 1888

Amagi class
900 tons, 1 x 6.7” BL, 2 (4) x 4.7” BL, 0" belt, 0" deck, 11 knots SE FT Coal
- Amagi, ordered 1875, commissioned 1878, discarded 1894

Kaimon class
1,360 tons, 1 x 6” BL, 3 (6) x 4.7” BL, 1 x 3” BL, 0" belt, 0" deck, 12 knots SE FT Coal
- Kaimon, ordered 1877, commissioned 1884
- Tenryu, ordered 1878, commissioned 1885

Tsukushi class
1,350 tons, 2 x 10” BL, 2 (4) x 4.7” BL, 1 (2) x 18” TT, 0" belt, 0" deck, 16.5 knots SE FT Coal
- Tsukushi, ordered 1879, commissioned 1884

Katsuragi class
1,480 tons, 2 x 6.7” BL, 2 (4) x 4.7” BL, 1 x 3” BL, 1 (2) x 15” TT, 0" belt, 0" deck, 13 knots SE FT Coal
- Katsuragi, ordered 1882, commissioned 1887
- Musashi, ordered 1883, commissioned 1888
- Yamato, ordered 1885, commissioned 1887

Takao class
1,750 tons, 2 (4) x 6” BL, 1 x 4.7” BL, 1 (2) x 15” TT, 0" belt, 0" deck, 15 knots CE FT Coal
- Takao, ordered 1886, commissioned 1889

Yaeyama class
1,750 tons, 2 (3) x 4.7” BL, 1 (2) x 18” TT, 0" belt, 0" deck, 21 knots TE FT Coal
- Yaeyama, ordered 1887, commissioned 1892

Chishima class
740 tons, 2 x 4.7”, 1 (3) x 15” TT 1 fwd, 0" belt, 0" deck, 22 knots TE FT Coal
- Chishima, ordered 1890, commissioned 1892, wrecked 1892

Tatsuta class
850 tons, 2 x 4.7”, 2 (5) x 15” TT 1 fwd, 0" belt, 0" deck, 21 knots TE FT Coal
Coal
- Tatsuta, ordered 1893, commissioned 1894

Miyako class
1,780 tons, 2 x 4.7”, 1 (2) x 18” TT , 0" belt, 0" deck, 20 knots TE FT Coal
- Miyako, ordered 1894, commissioned 1899

Chihaya class
1,240 tons, 2 x 4.7”, 2 (4) x 3”, 1 (3) x 18” TT 1 fwd, 0" belt, 0" deck, 21 knots TE FT Coal
- Chihaya, ordered 1898, commissioned 1901
 
Kongo class
2,200 tons, 2 (3) x 6.7" BL, 3 (6) x 6" BL, 1 (2) x 14” TT, 4.5" Iron belt, 0" deck, 14 knots CE FT Coal
- Kongo, ordered 1875, commissioned 1878
- Hiei, ordered 1785, commissioned 1878, lost Sino-Japanese War
Rather ahead of her time, I think.

In any case, the greatest asset to Japan's navy is clearly their phantom torpedo boats that can appear on the other side of the globe. (shout out to Drachinifel viewers).
 
Miss C's Design Note #9 - The Origins of the Timeline

Yesterday (which might be several days ago by the time I finish this), due to the occasional person liking chapters in the previous iterations, I went and added a link to this current iteration at the beginning and end of the previous threads so anyone who stumbled across them could find the latest iteration (if there's a fifth iteration, I'll update them to point at that). This put me in a nostalgic mood and I wondered if anything had survived all the iterations. So I checked my backup files and to my surprise, I found there was. An entry which features virtually unaltered in Iteration One, Iteration Two (which for some reason I've now forgotten actually has three different versions labelled A. B and C), Iteration Three and now Iteration Four (where it was finally ever so slightly altered). I've included them all at the end of this.

Then I started thinking where the seed idea for the timeline actually came from. The roots of this timeline go back a very long way, decades in fact. I make no secret of having had an unconventional life. While I don't mention it, mostly because I can not see how it's relevant to all that many things, I'm also trans. Started my transition in the mid 70s when I was 13 (I see transition as a lifelong endeavour, so haven't finished it yet lol). The most immediate result of this was ending up homeless, with no means of support at age 13. People can kind of gushy when I mention that or many details of my life, Thank you if you do, but its unnecessary. I see the process of living as a matter of adapting to the circumstances life presents you. Life presented circumstances and I simply adapted, nothing more, certainly nothing I view as special, kind of helpful to me to see things that way.

But anyway this brought a lot of chaos to my life along with a distressing series of difficulties. But as I said I adapted. One of my adaptations was to create worlds in my head. They were useful to visit during the chaos and when dealing with difficulties, plus they were pretty much the only things I could really call mine. I also spent a lot of time in libraries. Wonderful places, warm, safe and above all free. And as many of my difficulties wouldn't have recognised a library if you dropped one on their heads, let alone where they were, the difficulties were less intrusive when I was there haha. I've a lifetime love of reading and history. And well what is a girl with a lifetime love of history and reading to do when she spends much of her day surrounded by books just asking to be read. I also pestered anyone half way nice around me for whatever they knew about anything. One of the adaptations I made to my life brought me in contact with a bewildering variety of more mature gentlemen who wished to enjoy my company (plus a few gentlewomen). Many were very well educated and knowledgeable in a range of different fields. Most were happy to indulge me (I had a very privileged upbringing originally, so appealed to those who wanted someone they saw as a little more 'upmarket,' plus I apparently was extremely good looking back then, stunning I'm told). So the good side of all the adaptations, difficulties and chaos was I learnt a lot about many things. I incorporated much of what I learnt into the worlds I created, made them seem far richer.

As life moved along one of those gentlemen who enjoyed my company introduced me to wargaming. My family on my father's side has a long history of military service, and on my mother's side a strong connection to the sea. One of my many uncles had been a Danish merchant seaman during the 2nd WW. He loved sitting down the many many children in my Danish family and telling his tales of his experiences. According to him, he was torpedoed three times and fought off sharks in the mid Atlantic by punching them on the nose. On reflection I think he may have exaggerated somewhat, but when you're 7 or 8 your reaction tends to be more of the “Wowwww, that's so exciting” variety. I was also reading Breyer's 'Battleships and Battlecruisers of the World' at the time. So wanted to try my hand at naval gaming. The gentleman was happy to indulge me, even joined me up to the local wargames club. Say what you will about geeks, nerds etc, but even in the 70s they were surprisingly accepting and tolerant of diversity. So another good warm safe place to spend time. Plus I picked up a few new very interesting gentlemen who wished to enjoy my company there as well. I picked their brains relentlessly.

Over time, the chaos in my life got less and the difficulties reduced, or at least became more tolerable haha. I got rid of some bad habits I'd picked up during those chaotic years too. I found some stability, got a mundane job for extra money and skills (I've had a huge variety of very different mundane jobs). Basically I settled down a bit. This allowed me to plan for periods of more than a week or two ahead. I'd found I loved naval wargaming. So in the mid 80s I decided to set up a dreadnought era naval campaign. It was set in a hypothetical extra continent in the middle of the Pacific which got hit by a honking great space rock space in pre history, creating a massive circular sea with many large islands around it. I also used it as a justification for why these island countries were so rich they could afford battlefleets rivalling the Imperial German Navy.

It was a rip roaring affair with everyone getting into the spirit of over the top frivolity. There was the nation of Imperia where the one and only crime was 'wasting government time and money.' The player was trying to pattern his state on pre 1866s Austria, sadly it seemed to end up more a caricature version of the stereotype humour deficient Imperial Prussian literalism. Many Circle Sea jokes involved an Imperian failing to understand why something they said or did was funny. Then there was Pesto, a sort of inter war Central European autocracy where everyone lived in dread of the powers of the post office and its feared postal inspectors who seemed to be the most effective secret police in the world. The phrase “I'm sorry that's classified. Now would you please accompany me to the local post office” could chill any Pestan to the soul. I particularly loved the Confederate refuge founded Nal'bama, which while it had no army or navy was a formidable power, relying on the strength of the Robert E Lee Yacht Squadron and its fleet of heavily armed pleasure dreadnoughts (by all accounts the sea life around Nal'bama was particularly aggressive) along with the Sons of the Confederacy Gentlemen's Club and their many divisions of well equipped groundskeepers (seemingly there was an issue with gophers and pigeons at the club requiring a range of machine guns and artillery including several 35cm super heavy howitzers to address, the standard issue 7mm Mauser of a groundskeeper just wasn't up to the task). The naval rules I still use today were developed for this campaign.

The seeds of this timeline are found in that campaign. The campaign ran for several years. Sadly Everything was pen and paper back then and I've lost the vast majority of the huge volume of written material the campaign generated, including the utterly hilarious Circle Sea Naval Gazette which regularly produced a newsletter giving all the gossip and latest news from the region, including guaranteed honest gov'ner details of military and naval developments. But after the campaign ended, I kept playing with it, expanding the world to cover the entire globe. I meant to eventually run a new massive epic campaign. Sadly it never came to pass. I got married, had children etc. Plus the gentlemen (and still odd gentlewoman), chaos, adaptations, bad habits and difficulties never truly left my life, so I never found time. But over the long years I kept tweaking, with the mythical world gradually moving closer and closer to our world. Eventually the mythical continent was dropped, the world became our world and I experimented with various historical what ifs. The last one was an attempt to see if I could prevent the fall of the British Empire. I tried a of different scenarios, none really worked but I learnt a lot.

Around 2014 I made an extremely foolish and unfortunate choice. I allowed a new, rather serious, difficulty into my life and the stability I'd built ended (I have appalling taste in women mostly, my current partner and girlfriends seem to very welcome exceptions). I adapted as I always do, and with the help of an extremely good friend the difficulty was removed from my life with me still relatively intact haha, though unable to work. This gave me a lot of free time and in my wandering on the internet I stumbled across this site. After lurking awhile I thought ”what hell, I'll give it a go.” Thus the timeline was born.

Hopefully my self indulgent rambling hasn't annoyed too many people.

The surviving entry

First Iteration

July 1881: The Technical and Scientific Scholarships Act establishes government scholarships for "worthy candidates of sober morals and modest means" to foster scientific and technical education amongst the working and middle classes.

Second Iteration, Version A

July 1881: The Technical and Scientific Scholarships Act establishes government scholarships for "worthy candidates of sober morals and modest means" to foster scientific and technical education amongst the working and middle classes.

Second Iteration, Version B

July 1881: The Technical and Scientific Scholarships Act establishes government scholarships for "worthy candidates of sober morals and modest means" to foster scientific and technical education amongst the working and middle classes.

Second Iteration, Version C

July 1881: The Technical and Scientific Scholarships Act establishes government scholarships for "worthy candidates of sober morals and modest means" to foster scientific and technical education amongst the working and middle classes.

Third Iteration

July 1881: The Technical and Scientific Scholarships Act establishes government scholarships for "worthy candidates of sober morals and modest means" to foster scientific and technical education amongst the working and middle classes.

Fourth Iteration

July 1881: As part of the government's coalition agreement the Technical and Scientific Scholarships Act establishes government scholarships for "worthy candidates of sober morals and modest means" to foster scientific and technical education amongst the working and middle classes. This act will noticeably increase the number of graduates in these fields.
 
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Greetings miss C
I just binge read the whole iteration 4 after you linked on the previous thread (please do so again if you start afresh, I completely missed this) I'm loving the story and the changes you've made. Looking forward to your future posts and development of the world you've created.

I've recently shared this site with my partner, mainly for the aiosf fan fiction. Though one of the things she often mentions is the sheer devotion you all have to your timelines and awe in how many years you all commit. I look forward to sharing this timeline and history with her.
 
Greetings miss C
I just binge read the whole iteration 4 after you linked on the previous thread (please do so again if you start afresh, I completely missed this) I'm loving the story and the changes you've made. Looking forward to your future posts and development of the world you've created.

I've recently shared this site with my partner, mainly for the aiosf fan fiction. Though one of the things she often mentions is the sheer devotion you all have to your timelines and awe in how many years you all commit. I look forward to sharing this timeline and history with her.

Thank you, I hope very much your partner and yourself enjoy what I've created. I must write some stories for this one, I think the TL about up to the point where I can. But at the moment most of my spare time is taken up by development of it haha.
 
Jan-April 1899: Beware the Paris Mob New
~Jan-April 1899: Beware the Paris Mob

January 1899: Former US senator Benjamin Harrison, the head of the Venezuelan delegation to the international commission to settle the Venezuelan border dispute with Britain makes his final statement to the commission. Much to the surprise of the commission, his statement is highly supportive of the British position, leading to suspicion of political interference by the extremely pro-British Secretary of State John Hay.

January 1899: After years of discussion over the viability of the project, the conquest of Sudan has finally allowed work to begin on a Cape to Cairo railway. While there is no continuous land route due to German East Africa, the intention is to use ferries on Lake Tanganyika to bridge the missing link through German territory.

January 1899: US President McKinley establishes a commission headed by US diplomat Jacob Schurman to determine how the former Spanish possessions of Cuba, Guam, the Philippines and Puerto Rico should be governed. The commissions membership will be drawn solely from the US, with no local representation from any of the territories concerned.

January 1899: Dowager Empress Cixi revokes the Guangxu Emperor's divorce of Empress Jingfang, restoring her as Empress. She also banishes his new Empress Keshun to Kunming in the Yunnan Province, seeking to end her influence over the Emperor.

February 1899: Anti-Dreyfusard French President Félix Faure dies unexpectedly. With the nation in crisis over the Dreyfus Affair, Émile Loubet is elected as compromise candidate to replace him. The boulangists led by Paul Déroulède and Jules Guérin convince Military Governor of Paris General Georges-Gabriel de Pellieu, to join them in coup. On the day of Faure's funeral troops under Pellieu's command seize the Élysée Palace and National Assembly placing Loubet under arrest. General Joseph Brugère, commanding the nearest troops to Paris, refuses to act to suppress the coup, allowing the boulangists to consolidate their control. Pellieu's troops expel the majority of Dreyfusard delegates, allowing the rump to elect Jules Méline as president with Guérin appointed Prime Minister. The coup turns the chaos in France into near civil war, with armed clashes throughout the country. Attempting to restore order Méline declares martial law, ordering the arrest of many prominent Dreyfusards.

February 14th 1899: Since becoming Prime Minister in 1885, Henry Campbell-Bannerman has spearheaded in a steady program of social reform, progressively introducing measures to improve women's, children, tenants and workers rights along with increasing social welfare. Even after resigning as Prime Minster in 1895 he has continued this program as Home Secretary. Finally convinced the Liberal government have sufficient support to win an election on the matter of women's suffrage or workers rights, he introduces the Representation of the People Bill and the Hours of Work Bill. The first would give women the vote on the same basis as men, while the second would introduce the forty hour working week. Both bills are immediately met with intense controversy.

February 1899: With Ruy Barbossa's attempted coup having turned into an armed uprising is Southern Brazil, the Brazilian National Assembly has authorised a temporary increase of the Brazilian Army from 12,000 to 20,000 men, along with the introduction of conscription for the National Guard. In an effort to end Barbossa's uprising an offensive spearheaded by the National Guard and naval Marines is launched in Rio Grande do Sul Province. The offensive will see fierce fighting but the government forces will gradually begin to gain the upper hand. The introduction of conscription will have the secondary effect of further increasing literacy amongst the Brazilian lower classes.

February 1899: The US Congress ratifies the Treaty of Paris ending the Spanish-American War. Attached to the ratification is the Platt Amendment which formally annexes Cuba, Guam, the Philippines and Puerto Rico as the first US overseas colonies. The new colonies are to be governed under a policy of 'benevolent assimilation,' which extends military rule but gives guarantees of respect for justice and human rights. The annexation is rejected by the independence movements in both Cuba and the Philippines, resulting in the outbreak of a bitter war between US forces and the rebels in both colonies. As the rebels in both Cuba and the Philippines are well armed and in control of considerable territory, the US declares a blockade of both, ordering the navy to intercept any vessels attempting to smuggle supplies to the rebels.

February 1899: German Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin has been pursuing the goal of developing a viable airship since his retirement from the army in 1890. Spurred by Alberto Santos-Dumont's successful flight last year, Zeppelin launches his first viable airship, LZ1 in southern Germany. Unlike Santos-Dumont's No 6, the LZ1 uses a rigid aluminium framework to retain its aerodynamic shape. This flight will be followed by two further flights in April. While successful, it is not deemed sufficiently developed to warrant central government support. However von Zeppelin does gain the support of the King of Württenberg, and along with mortgaging his estates, is able able continue his work.

March 1899: With France now essentially engulfed in civil war, many citizens have fled the chaos. Included amongst them is the Brazilian inventor Alberto Santos-Dumont, who relocates to Britain to continue his experiments in flight.

March 1899: Despite their victory in the Spanish-American War, the US Army is unsatisfied with the performance of their Krag-Jørgensen rifle compared with the Spanish Mauser. As a result the US order the Springfield Armoury to develop a new service rifle based on the Mauser action along with a new high velocity cartridge to match the 7x57mm Mauser.

March 1899: Over the years, spread of British expatriates around the world due to growing commercial interests have been incidentally spreading the game of cricket, with it having gained a firm foothold in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway and Southern China. In an effort to further encourage the game, a European tour by an All-Britain team is organised. The tour will see the first test match to be played outside the Empire or US held in Copenhagen.

March 1899: Germany, with designs on both Cuba and the Philippines, begins covertly smuggling arms and supplies to the anti-US rebels, including significant numbers of obsolete Mauser Gewehr 1871/84 black powder rifles. This will lead to a significant deterioration in relations between the Germany and the US.

April 1899: The US naval program includes three new battleships and nine cruisers in an effort to replace the losses suffered during the Spanish-American War. The Virginia class battleships will see a reversion to the highly unorthodox policy of placing the eight inch battery directly over the main battery as in the Kentucky class. The six cruisers of the Denver class will be conventional protected cruisers while the three St Louis class, though not classified as such are in fact small armoured cruisers with a two inch belt. The program also includes twelve small lightly armed 750 ton gunboats to enforce the blockade of Cuba and the Philippines. The Iroquois class are patterned after the famous '90 day schooners' of the Civil War and will be built rapidly, taking an average of six months to complete.

April 1899: Since the early 1890s, various proposals have been put forward for a federation of the Imperial Dominions in the Pacific. Support has ebbed and flowed over the years, with the smaller Dominions fearing domination by the larger ones. However recently support has firmed up, with many of the smaller Dominions believing federation will give them a larger voice in Imperial affair. A referendum in 1898 throughout the Australian Dominions to ratify a draft constitution was defeated in Queensland over concerns regarding the potential of a federal government banning non-white migration which could seriously impact their sugar cane industry. In an effort to resolve Queensland's concerns, a new constitutional conference is convened in Adelaide.

April 1899: The Lodge Inquiry into the performance of the US Navy during the Spanish-American War delivers a report highly critical of the administration of the service and US ship designs. It particularly notes the loss of the battleship Massachusetts was due entire to a design flaw which rendered its armoured belt totally useless a full load, allowing a Spanish shell to penetrate its magazine, while the loss of the battleship Maine is attributed to Commodore Dewey's disregard of the possibility of mines when entering the restricted waters of Manilla Bay. The report is scathing regarding the Navy's total lack of any coordinated professional administration or even a professional commander in chief. It strongly recommends the Navy's administration be totally overhauled, pointing at the Royal Navy's First Sea Lord and Admiralty Board as a potential model. The Lodge Report will result in far reaching changes to the US Navy.
 
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Very interesting update. Sad to see France go this route.

They got damn close to this in the OTL, with the stronger fascist influences of the boulangists ITTL, they did go down this dark path. It is ultimately the end of the Third Republic. But watch this space. I did mention there were some slow spin balls which were making it hard to predict the path of the TL coming up, this is one of them.
 
April 1899: The Lodge Inquiry into the performance of the US Navy during the Spanish-American War delivers a report highly critical of the administration of the service and US ship designs. It particularly notes the loss of the battleship Massachusetts was due entire to a design flaw which rendered its armoured belt totally useless a full load, allowing a Spanish shell to penetrate its magazine, while the loss of the battleship Maine is attributed to Commodore Dewey's disregard of the possibility of mines when entering the restricted waters of Manilla Bay. The report is scathing regarding the Navy's total lack of any coordinated professional administration or even a professional commander in chief. It strongly recommends the Navy's administration be totally overhauled, pointing at the Royal Navy's First Sea Lord and Admiralty Board as a potential model. The Lodge Report will result in far reaching changes to the US Navy.
Assuming to quote Congress does not take it outside and beat it with sticks.
 
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