Steam Yachts at War

Steam Yachts at War

The Naval Deployment of British & American Armed Yachts
1898 – 1918

This book tells the story of how rich men’s playthings became weapons of war.
Steam yachts were the peacock tail-feathered, must have, luxury item of the late
nineteenth and early twentieth century. But when wars came, in 1898 and 1914, they
suddenly transformed into warships, and often their crews became warriors, not

Now at war, yachts attacked land positions and fought warships, U-boats and the
weather. They interdicted blockade runners, escorted convoys, were depot ships,
served as hospitals afloat and undertook a host of other functions.

Lavishly illustrated with photographs and plans of pre-war and wartime steam yachts
from a world now lost to view, the book tells the story of the use of private yachts in
two wars, the Spanish-American war of 1898, and the conflict of 1914-1918,
especially in the British and American navies. It examines the peacetime origins and
development of the steam yachts, and their owners and designers. And it considers
their naval usage, the conditions under which the crews lived and worked, the many
and varied duties assigned to the yachts and their success or otherwise, together
with the losses sustained.

From badge of wealth to warship to extinction, all in around sixty years; Steam
Yachts at War is a compelling story.

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