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StealthJester
Post subject: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 3rd, 2017, 6:31 am
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Location: Spokane Valley, Washington, US
Greetings,

Here is my reboot of the War of the Americas AU. It will include some revised images to accompany new ships, revised timeline, maps and additional background information. Enjoy!

Introduction:
This timeline explores the consequences of Confederate independence from the US after the Civil War – particularly in naval matters. Please note that world history outside the Americas from 1862 through 1917 is assumed to remain the same as in our timeline.

Point of Divergence: September, 1862 – Battle of Antietam; American Civil War.

[ img ]
Link to original map at d-maps.com http://d-maps.com/m/america/usa/usa/usa ... aska12.gif

Civil War and Aftermath:
With decisive victories at the Battle of Antietam in September of 1862 and the pivotal Battle of Gettysburg the following July, the Confederate States of America (CSA) finally gains recognition from Great Britain and France. This setback for the Union forces it to go on the defensive, and although the US is successful at halting the Confederate advance at the New York-Massachusetts border and in New Jersey which prevents Washington from being encircled, the country's position is untenable in the long run – particularly when both Britain and France threaten to become directly involved. US President Abraham Lincoln reluctantly agrees to a cease-fire in August of 1864.
A month later, Lincoln and CSA President Jefferson Davis agree to participate in talks sponsored by Britain and France in Washington. The resulting Secession Treaty is signed on October 15, 1864 to go into effect January 1, 1865. The treaty grants the CSA full independence from the US with possession of all western territories claimed at the start of the war. In addition, referendums are scheduled to determine the postwar status of the four so-called “Border States” of Delaware, Maryland, Kentucky, and Missouri. The secession referendums called for in the Treaty are held during 1865, Delaware and Maryland electing to remain with the US, while Kentucky and Missouri join the CSA.

In the elections of 1864, Abraham Lincoln and the Republicans take the blame for “Failing to preserve the Union” and are soundly defeated by George McClellan and the Democrats. Lincoln returns to Illinois a one-term president and after a sabbatical to the West serves two terms as Illinois governor. He dies at his home in Springfield in 1880 at the age of seventy-one.
When McClellan is sworn in March of 1865, many in the North are concerned he will revoke the Emancipation Proclamation instituted by Lincoln in 1863 as he hinted at during the campaign. However, public opinion is decidedly against anything associated with the “Traitorous South” – including slavery – and the Proclamation is upheld, with the three so-called “Recognition Amendments” (signed between 1865 and 1872) establishing equal rights as US law. Politically, however, the stigma of the Republicans “Losing the War” leads to Democratic domination of the presidency and the US Congress for the rest of the century.

In the newly independent Confederacy, President Jefferson Davis is put under tremendous pressure by Britain and France – both of whom had abolished slavery years earlier – to abandon the institution. As expected, there is resistance to this sort of dramatic change, although some measures aimed at improving working conditions and access to medical care are passed, with some more “progressive” slave-owners even instituting a form of indentured servitude – but in truth, these efforts were made more to placate the CSA’s European allies than to create real change. It would take the Second Industrial Revolution of the late 19th and early 20th Centuries to finally put the last nail in the coffin of slavery – at least in the continental Confederacy.

The postwar US Navy:
The United States Navy ended the Civil War with a decided numerical advantage over the Confederate Navy. By the time of the cease-fire in August of 1864 the USN fielded a force of 157 active combatants comprising 19 coastal monitors with 10 building, New Ironsides (an ironclad frigate), Galena (an ironclad sloop), 21 riverine monitors and ironclads of various classes, 12 steam frigates, 31 steam sloops, and 72 steam gunboats.
In the postwar draw-down of forces under the McClellan Administration, all riverine monitors and ironclads were either placed in reserve or scrapped within two years. By the end of 1867 the US Navy comprised a total of 96 active combatants; 29 monitors including the advanced sea-going Illinois (ex-Kalamazoo) class, along with 8 steam frigates, 23 steam sloops, and 36 gunboats.

The postwar Confederate Navy:
The Confederate States Navy – having been built up from nothing in 1861 – had a fleet of 26 warships (not counting privateers and blockade runners) by the time of the cease-fire. This fleet consisted of 16 casemate rams of various types and 5 steam cruisers (such as the CSS Alabama) and 5 surviving gunboats. By the end of 1865, the CS Navy had acquired a foreign-built quartet of sea-going ironclads; the two British-built North Carolina class barque-rigged turret ships, and the two French-built Stonewall class barque-rigged casemate ironclads. All surviving acquired and/or converted gunboats and privateers that were operational during the war were sold off or scrapped by the beginning of 1866.

Illinois class (US):
[ img ]

When the Civil War ended, the US Navy had four advanced twin-turret monitors under construction. They would feature a hull with better sea-keeping abilities and would be the largest ships built by the US to date, but were jeopardized by the political chaos that characterized the immediate postwar period. It fell to Gideon Welles – the capable, albeit cantankerous – Secretary of the Navy under Lincoln and retained by McClellan, to push for the completion of the ships, arguing that with a potentially still hostile South, they would present a viable deterrent.

Commissioned between 1866 and 1867, the four ships; Illinois (ex-Kalamazoo), Massachusetts (ex-Passaconaway), Oregon (ex-Quinsigamond), and Nebraska (ex-Shackamaxon) were very successful in service although, with a maximum speed of 10 knots, somewhat limited operationally.

The new ironclads displaced 5,700 tons fully loaded and were 346 feet long overall. They were armed with four 15” Dahlgren smoothbore guns in twin turrets fore and aft and were propelled by two horizontal direct-acting steam engines driving twin screws producing slightly over 2,000 horsepower. They were protected by 6” thick wrought-iron side armor with 21” wood backing which extended three feet below the waterline with 15” turret armor and a 3” armored deck.

After entering service, the Illinois’ served primarily on patrols of the East Coast. Throughout the 1870’s they fulfilled their intended function as envisioned by Welles – arguably too well as they were a major factor in the CS Navy’s eventual acquisition of ever more powerful warships. All four served until the early 1880’s by which time they were deemed obsolete and retired. Held in ordinary until 1887, they were subsequently scrapped between 1888 and 1889.

Next up: North Carolina class

Cheers!
StealthJester


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Rob2012
Post subject: Re: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 3rd, 2017, 7:05 am
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Joined: April 24th, 2017, 8:54 pm
Very good start so far.


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RegiaMarina1939
Post subject: Re: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 5th, 2017, 3:29 am
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Joined: January 12th, 2016, 8:57 pm
Location: Wilmington, North Carolina
As someone who enjoyed the first thread quite a lot, I'm very excited to see a successor!

_________________
Best regards,

RegiaMarina1939

Current Worklist:
-Real designs (civilian ships)
-FD Scale American Diesel Trucks
-Sorbia AU


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RipSteakface
Post subject: Re: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 5th, 2017, 4:24 pm
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Joined: July 7th, 2017, 6:32 pm
Awesome, it's back!


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StealthJester
Post subject: Re: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 8th, 2017, 4:08 am
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Joined: December 22nd, 2014, 12:25 am
Location: Spokane Valley, Washington, US
North Carolina class (CSA):
[ img ]

In March of 1862, the CSA’s naval agent in Great Britain, James Bulloch, contracted with Laird & Sons for the construction of two ironclad warships. Construction was suspended shortly after the ships were laid down until the improving Confederate situation lead to official British recognition in September of 1863, whereupon construction was resumed. Both were delivered during mid-1865 and commissioned with the CS Navy as CSS North Carolina and CSS Mississippi shortly thereafter.

The North Carolina's displaced 2,750 tons nominal and were 240 feet long overall. They were originally armed with four 9” Dahlgren-type smoothbores (reversed engineered from captured US weapons) produced at the Tredegar Works – the Confederacy’s primary armaments manufacturer – and mounted in two twin turrets amidships. They were powered by two horizontal steam engines producing 1,500 horsepower through a single propeller shaft. Design speed was 10.5 knots, although Mississippi reached a little over 11 knots during trials. Maximum range was 1,200 nautical miles under steam. Both ships were barque-rigged with three masts and were among the first warships to use a tripod mast design instead of conventional shrouds to decrease interference with the gun turrets – improving their firing arcs. The armor layout consisted of a 4” armor belt tapering to 3” at bow and stern. The turrets were protected by 5.5” armor which was increased to 10” at the gun ports.

Upon commissioning, the two ships joined the Stonewall class in the Norfolk Squadron – the precursor to the Confederate Home Fleet established fifteen years later. They were very popular with their crews due to their excellent handling characteristics and quality construction (the Laird Company had also built the highly successful cruiser Alabama) and made several overseas goodwill visits to Europe, but served primarily in patrol deployments in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico.
Refit with license-built British 10” rifled muzzleloaders in 1875, limitations of the original design would prevent additional upgrades to their machinery the CS Navy desired. Despite this, both ships served during the Mexican-Confederate War of 1877-1879, participating in shore bombardment and coastal fort suppression duties. Considered obsolete by the beginning of the 1880's, the pair was decommissioned during 1887 and was broken up starting a year later.

Cheers!
StealthJester


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Rob2012
Post subject: Re: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 8th, 2017, 5:38 am
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Joined: April 24th, 2017, 8:54 pm
Nice drawing. Can't wait to see what else you have. Do have a quick question, in this thread are their going to be other types of ships beside battleships and destroyers? Like cruisers for one example.


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StealthJester
Post subject: Re: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 8th, 2017, 11:53 pm
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Joined: December 22nd, 2014, 12:25 am
Location: Spokane Valley, Washington, US
Thanks for your question, Rob2012

Short answer: Yes. Slightly longer answer: My goal is to examine the evolution of both the United States Navy and the Confederate States Navy up to the onset of the War of the Americas before looking at the conflict itself. I will endeavor to cover all surface combatants and, time permitting, submarines and aircraft for both navies.

Stay tuned!

Cheers!
StealthJester


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Rob2012
Post subject: Re: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 9th, 2017, 1:11 am
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Joined: April 24th, 2017, 8:54 pm
StealthJester wrote: *
Thanks for your question, Rob2012

Short answer: Yes. Slightly longer answer: My goal is to examine the evolution of both the United States Navy and the Confederate States Navy up to the onset of the War of the Americas before looking at the conflict itself. I will endeavor to cover all surface combatants and, time permitting, submarines and aircraft for both navies.

Stay tuned!

Cheers!
StealthJester
Thank you. I liked your designs in the previous thread, and can't wait to see some of these. From what I saw in the previous thread, I take it a lot of the Confederate Navy was built in Britain? Because some of those ship classes looked quite familiar.


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StealthJester
Post subject: Re: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 9th, 2017, 7:48 pm
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Joined: December 22nd, 2014, 12:25 am
Location: Spokane Valley, Washington, US
Stonewall Class (CSA):
[ img ]

Like the earlier North Carolina class, the Stonewall class was foreign-built, in this case the ships were ordered through French shipyards under the code names Sphinx and Cheops in mid-1863 with armament to be supplied by Britain. Again construction was postponed until official recognition of the Confederacy was gained from the French Government, but the delay was short and both ships commissioned with the CSN by the fall of 1865.

CSS Stonewall (ex-Sphinx) and CSS Sumter (ex-Cheops) were 194 feet long and displaced 1,440 tons normal and 1,560 tons full load. As built they were armed with British Armstrong breech loading rifles; a 300 pounder in the forward casemate and two 70 pounders in non-rotating turrets aft. They were propelled by two two-cylinder horizontal steam engines producing around 1,200 horsepower through twin shafts. They had a design speed of 11 knots (never achieved in service) and a range of about 1,200 nautical miles. Armor consisted of a 4.9” belt, with turrets having 4.5” armor while the forward casemate was 5” thick. All armor was of wrought-iron plating over wood backing.

Intended as blockade runners and commerce raiders, the ships were poorly suited to their new roles in the postwar CSN. Poor sea-keeping and the low quality of construction were frequent complaints – although their maneuverability was considered superb due to their unusual (for the time) twin rudders. Shells for their guns were also proving to be difficult to acquire and led to the decision in 1869 to replace the Armstrong’s with a captured 11” Dahlgren smoothbore and two 6.4” Brooke rifles. The British guns were retained and studied for possible local manufacture, however.
Despite their shortcomings, both Stonewalls served during the Mexican-Confederate War where they performed adequately. After the conflict ended in 1879, the ships were placed in reserve where they remained for the next several years. When consideration was given to possibly re-commissioning them in 1884, the CSN conducted a thorough survey of the ships which were found to be in poor condition and with badly degraded hulls. As a result, they were sold off within the year and scrapped.

Cheers!
StealthJester


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Rob2012
Post subject: Re: War of the Americas RebootPosted: December 9th, 2017, 9:12 pm
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Joined: April 24th, 2017, 8:54 pm
Can't to wait to hear the story of the Mexican-Confederate war.


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