USS Missouri at War

Zenith Press
2
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On September 2, 1945, surrender ceremonies officially ending World War II were broadcast worldwide from the deck of the USS Missouri. The ceremony also marked the end of one of the most eventful years for any vessel in the history of warfare. USS Missouri at War chronicles the career of this mighty warship, the last battleship built by the United States.

Veteran naval historian Kit Bonner describes "Mighty Mos" powerful strikes against Japan, its support of the Iwo Jima landings and bombardment of Okinawa, and its decisive role in the destruction of key Japanese industrial targets. That war was over, but the Missouri was not done yet; and Bonner follows her service in the Korean War, her modernization and reactivation for the 1991 Gulf War, and her final decommissioning in 1992, with eleven battle stars to her credit.

For its authoritative and close-up look at the life and work of a world-class battleship, and for its insight into the history of twentieth-century naval warfare, this strikingly illustrated book is one that no naval enthusiast or military history buff will want to be without.
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About the author

Kit Bonner and Carolyn Bonner are naval historians and photographers. They have authored or co-authored numerous books, including USS Iowa at War, Modern Warships, Great Ship Disasters, Warship Boneyards, Cold War at Sea, and Great Naval Disasters. Kit was the naval consultant for the 1997 blockbuster film, Titanic. The Bonners live in Ione, California.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Zenith Press
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Published on
Oct 15, 2008
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Pages
160
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ISBN
9781616732653
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Military / Naval
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Focusing on the oceanic war rather than the war in the Great Lakes, this study charts the War of 1812 from the perspectives of the two opposing navies at sea—one of the largest fleets in the world and a small, upstart navy just three decades old. While American naval leadership searched for a means of contesting Britain’s naval dominance, the English sought to destroy the U.S. Navy and protect its oceanic highways. Instead of describing battles between opposing warships, McCranie evaluates entire cruises by American and British men-of-war, noting both successes and failures and how they translated into broader strategies. In the process, his study becomes a history of how the two navies fought the oceanic war, linking high-level governmental decisions about strategy to the operational use of fleets in the Atlantic and Caribbean and from the South Pacific to the Indian Ocean.

Unlike other books on the subject, this work offers a balanced appraisal of the oceanic war on the high seas, taking into account the strategic considerations of both combatants and how the leadership from each side assessed, planned, and implemented operational concepts. Drawing on a wealth of British and American archival sources, McCranie guides the reader through the strategic decision making processes on both sides of the Atlantic. He demonstrates vividly the impact of those decisions on the course of the war at sea, where the contest was close and deadly. Indeed, the author’s action-packed accounts of battles hold special appeal.


This study offers a more balanced appraisal of the war than most studies of the topic. Particularly important is the stress on understanding British strategic imperatives and the correlation between these imperatives and why Britain conducted the oceanic naval war in the manner it did. This study focuses on all cruises of American warships, not just those that terminated in battles so as to provide a more complete history of the naval war.
A portrait in words and photographs of the interwar Navy, this book examines the twenty-year period that saw the U.S. fleet shrink under the pressure of arms limitation treaties and government economy and then grow again to a world-class force. The authors trace the Navy's evolution from a fleet centered around slow battleships to one that deployed most of the warship types that proved so essential in World War II, including fast aircraft carriers, heavy and light cruisers, sleek destroyers, powerful battleships, and deadly submarines. Both the older battleships and these newer ships are captured in stunning period photographs that have never before been published. An authoritative yet lively text explains how and why the newer ships and aircraft came to be. Thomas Hone and Trent Hone describe how a Navy desperately short funds and men nevertheless pioneered carrier aviation, shipboard electronics, code-breaking, and (with the Marines) amphibious warfare - elements that made America's later victory in the Pacific possible. Based on years of study of official Navy department records, their book presents a comprehensive view of the foundations of a navy that would become the world's largest and most formidable. At the same time, the heart of the book draws on memoirs, novels, and oral histories to reveal the work and the skills of sailors and officers that contributed to successes in World War II. From their service on such battleships as West Virginia to their efforts ashore to develop and procure the most effective aircraft, electronics, and ships, from their adventures on Yangtze River gunboats to carrier landings on the converted battle cruisers Saratoga and Lexington, the men are profiled along with their ships. This combination of popular history with archival history will appeal to a general audience of naval enthusiasts.
Culled from many never-before-published narratives and oral histories conducted under the auspices of the U.S. Naval Institute, Submarine Stories presents nearly five dozen first-person accounts from men who were involved with gasoline- and diesel-powered submarines during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The story of these boats, their technological evolution and tactical value, is also the story of the men who went to sea in them. The accounts illustrate the human aspects of serving in diesel boats: the training, operations in peacetime and war, liberty exploits, humorous sidelights, and special feelings of bonding and camaraderie that grew among shipmates.
Included here are some familiar names. Slade Cutter, who earned four Navy Crosses as a skipper in World War II, describes the process that made him a capable submariner. Dennis Wilkinson, first skipper of the nuclear-powered Nautilus in the 1950s, tells of being in the first missile-firing submarine in the 1940s.

Robert McNitt recalls his experiences as executive officer to Medal of Honor skipper Gene Fluckey. Among the other submariners who present their personal memories are Jerry Beckley, contemplating the possibility of firing nuclear missiles during the 1962 Cuban crisis; Hosey Mays, describing what it was like to be a black man in a boat with a nearly all-white crew; Paul Foster, discussing the sinking a German U-boat in World War I; and Wayne Miller, explaining the enormous satisfaction he felt when he earned his silver dolphins.
From the author of Midnight in the Pacific, a stirring narrative of World War II's final major battle -- the Pacific war's largest, bloodiest, most savagely fought campaign -- the last of its kind.

The last great battle of World War II began on Easter Sunday, April 1, 1945, when more than 184,000 began landing on the only Japanese home soil invaded during the Pacific war. The island of Okinawa was just 350 miles from mainland Japan, and the Allies planned to use it as its forward base for its invasion.

On the island, nearly 140,000 Japanese and auxiliary soldiers resisted the US-led assault with suicidal tenacity from a Gibraltar of hollowed-out, fortified hills and ridges. Under constant fire and in the rain and mud, U.S. troops fought ferociously, battered the Japanese with artillery, aerial bombing, naval gunfire, and every infantry tool. The battle also marked the apotheosis of kamikaze air attacks, which sank 36 warships, damaged 368 others and killed almost 5,000 seamen.

When the brutal slugfest ended, more than 125,00 enemy had been killed--and 7,500 American ground troops had died. And tragically, at least hundred thousand Okinawa civilians died violently while trapped between the battling armies. The Japanese had succeeded in preventing invasion, but the bloody campaign had convinced US leaders that only an atomic bomb could end the war.

Utilizing vivid accounts written by US combatants, along with previously unused Japanese sources, Joseph Wheelan brings a strong human dimension to this rich story of the war's last great battle waged against an determined enemy and extreme conditions.
#1 New York Times Bestseller

From the bestselling author and master of narrative nonfiction comes the enthralling story of the sinking of the Lusitania

On May 1, 1915, with WWI entering its tenth month, a luxury ocean liner as richly appointed as an English country house sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool, carrying a record number of children and infants. The passengers were surprisingly at ease, even though Germany had declared the seas around Britain to be a war zone. For months, German U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic. But the Lusitania was one of the era’s great transatlantic “Greyhounds”—the fastest liner then in service—and her captain, William Thomas Turner, placed tremendous faith in the gentlemanly strictures of warfare that for a century had kept civilian ships safe from attack. 

Germany, however, was determined to change the rules of the game, and Walther Schwieger, the captain of Unterseeboot-20, was happy to oblige. Meanwhile, an ultra-secret British intelligence unit tracked Schwieger’s U-boat, but told no one. As U-20 and the Lusitania made their way toward Liverpool, an array of forces both grand and achingly small—hubris, a chance fog, a closely guarded secret, and more—all converged to produce one of the great disasters of history.

It is a story that many of us think we know but don’t, and Erik Larson tells it thrillingly, switching between hunter and hunted while painting a larger portrait of America at the height of the Progressive Era. Full of glamour and suspense, Dead Wake brings to life a cast of evocative characters, from famed Boston bookseller Charles Lauriat to pioneering female architect Theodate Pope to President Woodrow Wilson, a man lost to grief, dreading the widening war but also captivated by the prospect of new love. 

Gripping and important, Dead Wake captures the sheer drama and emotional power of a disaster whose intimate details and true meaning have long been obscured by history.
Rear Admiral Edward Baxter Billingsley's book, The Emmons Saga, captures the deck plate routine of the Sailors aboard Emmons as she intersected with the great events of World War II and influenced the course of history. Any reader who has ever served afloat will recognize the authenticity of every detail, and will appreciate the complex relationship of an individual ship with war and diplomacy.

This is a history of brave men ? members of "the greatest generation" ? who operated in both the Atlantic and Pacific theaters of World War II. Admiral Billingsley provides us a microcosm of World War II naval warfare, spanning the Battle of the Atlantic, the North African Campaign, the Normandy Invasion and the Battle of Okinawa. Historic facts and colorful sea-stories depict life aboard a naval combatant and illuminate the bonds of friendship and trust that developed among this group of young, inexperienced, and untested youth. As members of that "special" generation pass on at a rate of over 1,000 each day, it is important that the virtues and sacrifice that they epitomize be remembered by future generations of Americans.

USS EMMONS rose from the depths of obscurity in 2001 when her gravesite was discovered off the shores of Okinawa and charted by American recreational divers. Her rediscovery has focused renewed interest both in the United States and Japan into the character of the American youth of that generation. The Emmons Saga, originally published a decade and a half ago, has been revised and up-dated, and it deserves a place of honor on the bookshelf of every maritime historian and lover of the sea.

RADM Jacob L. Shuford, USNB
President, Naval War College

“This will be a fight against overwhelming odds from which survival cannot be expected. We will do what damage we can.”

With these words, Lieutenant Commander Robert W. Copeland addressed the crew of the destroyer escort USS Samuel B. Roberts on the morning of October 25, 1944, off the Philippine Island of Samar. On the horizon loomed the mightiest ships of the Japanese navy, a massive fleet that represented the last hope of a staggering empire. All that stood between it and Douglas MacArthur’ s vulnerable invasion force were the Roberts and the other small ships of a tiny American flotilla poised to charge into history.

In the tradition of the #1 New York Times bestseller Flags of Our Fathers, James D. Hornfischer paints an unprecedented portrait of the Battle of Samar, a naval engagement unlike any other in U.S. history—and captures with unforgettable intensity the men, the strategies, and the sacrifices that turned certain defeat into a legendary victory.

BONUS: This edition includes an excerpt from James D. Hornfischer's Neptune's Inferno.

Praise for The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors

“One of the finest WWII naval action narratives in recent years, this book follows in the footsteps of Flags of Our Fathers. . . . Exalting American sailors and pilots as they richly deserve. . . . Reads like a very good action novel.”—Publishers Weekly

“Reads as fresh as tomorrow's headlines. . . . Hornfischer's captivating narrative uses previously classified documents to reconstruct the epic battle and eyewitness accounts to bring the officers and sailors to life.”—Texas Monthly

“Hornfischer is a powerful stylist whose explanations are clear as well as memorable. . . . A dire survival-at-sea saga.”—Denver Post

“In The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors, James Hornfischer drops you right into the middle of this raging battle, with 5-inch guns blazing, torpedoes detonating and Navy fliers dive-bombing. . . . The overall story of the battle is one of American guts, glory and heroic sacrifice.”—Omaha World Herald
In the tradition of Jon Krakauer’s Into Thin Air and Sebastian Junger’s The Perfect Storm comes a true tale of riveting adventure in which two weekend scuba divers risk everything to solve a great historical mystery–and make history themselves.

For John Chatterton and Richie Kohler, deep wreck diving was more than a sport. Testing themselves against treacherous currents, braving depths that induced hallucinatory effects, navigating through wreckage as perilous as a minefield, they pushed themselves to their limits and beyond, brushing against death more than once in the rusting hulks of sunken ships.

But in the fall of 1991, not even these courageous divers were prepared for what they found 230 feet below the surface, in the frigid Atlantic waters sixty miles off the coast of New Jersey: a World War II German U-boat, its ruined interior a macabre wasteland of twisted metal, tangled wires, and human bones–all buried under decades of accumulated sediment.

No identifying marks were visible on the submarine or the few artifacts brought to the surface. No historian, expert, or government had a clue as to which U-boat the men had found. In fact, the official records all agreed that there simply could not be a sunken U-boat and crew at that location.

Over the next six years, an elite team of divers embarked on a quest to solve the mystery. Some of them would not live to see its end. Chatterton and Kohler, at first bitter rivals, would be drawn into a friendship that deepened to an almost mystical sense of brotherhood with each other and with the drowned U-boat sailors–former enemies of their country. As the men’s marriages frayed under the pressure of a shared obsession, their dives grew more daring, and each realized that he was hunting more than the identities of a lost U-boat and its nameless crew.

Author Robert Kurson’s account of this quest is at once thrilling and emotionally complex, and it is written with a vivid sense of what divers actually experience when they meet the dangers of the ocean’s underworld. The story of Shadow Divers often seems too amazing to be true, but it all happened, two hundred thirty feet down, in the deep blue sea.

BONUS: This edition includes an excerpt from Robert Kurson's Pirate Hunters.
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