De Grasse

The last unsuccessful search term from the unsuccessful searches here at Thomo’s Hole was De Grasse. Now this is an interesting one as there are a number of nautical De Grasse’s in particular and I am not sure whether the reader of the blog was looking for the Admiral or the ship. Well, true to form, I’ll give you both.

Admiral de Grasse

François Joseph Paul, marquis de Grasse Tilly, comte de Grasse
François Joseph Paul, marquis de Grasse Tilly, comte de Grasse

François Joseph Paul, marquis de Grasse Tilly, comte de Grasse (1722 – January 14, 1788) was a French admiral. The potted history of de Grasse really starts in 1776, during the American Revolution. The French Navy was assigned to assist the Americans and de Grasse was a commander of a division. He served under Louis Guillouet, comte d’Orvilliers at the First Battle of Ushant from July 23 to 27, 1778.

In 1779, he joined the fleet in the Caribbean under the command of Count d’Estaing. De Grasse distinguished himself in the battles of Dominica and Saint Lucia in 1780 and Tobago in 1781. He was involved in the capture of Grenada and fought against Admiral Rodney in the Battle of Martinique, where the French were commanded by Guichen.

De Grasse came to the aid of Washington and Rochambeau when he brought 3000 men from Saint-Domingue, landing these reinforcements in Virginia. He then won perhaps his greatest victory when he defeated the British fleet in the Battle of the Chesapeake in September 1781.

His later fortune was somewhat less successful however, being defeated at the Battle of St. Kitts by Admiral Hood and then being defeated and taken prisoner by Admiral Rodney at the Battle of the Saintes.

De Grasse – the Ships

The French Frigate, D612 De Grasse, a frigate of the F67 Type
The French Frigate, D612 De Grasse, a frigate of the F67 Type

There have been five ships carrying the name de Grasse, two in the French Navy and three in the US Navy.

French De Grasse 1

The first French vessel carrying the name De Grasse was an anti aircraft cruiser of the Coubert class. This cruiser was designed in the late 1930s, of a similar design to the preceding La Galissonnière class cruisers although heavier and with improved anti-aircraft equipment. The other two ships of this class, Chateaurenault and Guichen were cancelled.

De Grasse was launched eventually in 1946, commissioned in 1956 and finally scrapped in 1974.

The general characteristics of De Grasse were:
Displacement: 9,389 t (9,241 long tons)
Length: 199.3 m (653 ft 10 in)
Beam 21.5 m (70 ft 6 in)
18.6 m (61 ft 0 in) w/l
Draft: 5.54 m (18 ft 2 in)
Propulsion: 2 × Rateau turbine groups from Chantiers de Bretagne, 27,000 hp (20,134 kW) each
4 × boilers
Speed: 33.8 knots
Complement: 70 officers
160 warrant officers
750 men
Armament: • 8 × twin turrets 127 mm AA
• 10 × twin turrets 57 mm Bofors (later removed)
Armour: Belt: 100 mm (3.9 in)
Deck: 38 mm (1.5 in)

French De Grasse 2

The Second French vessel carrying the name De Grasse is a type F67 frigate, still in service. This vessel is the one illustrated above and was laid down in 1972, launched in 1974, commissioned in 1975 and went into service in 1977. The De Grasse is still in service in the French Navy.

Tourville class frigate

Details of the vessel are:
Class and type:
Displacement: 4580 tonnes (6100 tonnes fully loaded)
Length: 152.75 m
Beam: 15.80 m
Draught: 6.60 m
Propulsion: 2 Rateau steam turbines, double reduction
4 multitubular boilers
Fuel: Gazoil
Propelers : 2 fixed propelers
Power : 58000 hp (42 MW)
Speed: 32 knots
Range: 1900 nautical miles (3500 km) at 30 knots
4500 nautical miles (8300 km) and 18 knots
Complement: 24 officers
160 non-commissioned officers
115 men
Sensors and processing systems: 1 DRBV 51B surface sentry radar
1 DRBV 26A air sentry radar
1 DRBC 32D targeting radar
2 DRBN 34 navigation radar
1 DUBV 23 hull sonar
1 ETBF DSBV 62C sonar
1 DSBX 1 tugged sonar
1 Syva torpedo alert system
Electronic warfare and decoys: 1 ARBB 32 jammer
1 ARBR 16 radar interceptor
2 Syllex decoy launchers bubble belt SENIT
3 SEAO/OPSMER HF, UHF, VHF and SHF liaison systems Syracuse 2 Inmarsat
Link 11
Anti-air * 1 Crotale EDIR system (8 missiles on launcher, 18 in magazine)
* 2 x 100 mm turrets (1968 model)
* 2 x 20 mm cannons
* 4 x 12.7 mm machine guns
* 6 Exocet MM38 anti-ship missiles launchers
* 2 x L5 torpedoe launchers, 10 torpedoes on board (L5 mod 4)
Aircraft carried: 2 Lynx WG13

And yes, I have my Conway’s back 🙂

American De Grasse 1

The first De Grasse in the US Navy was the yacht shown below, in service in 1918. Details of this vessel are sketchy and there is no listing for this vessel in Conway’s. The US Naval Historical Center notes:

USS De Grasse, an 81′ 2 1/2″ long section patrol boat, was built in 1917-1918 at Neponset, Massachusetts, as the steam-turbine powered pleasure craft of the same name. Though ordered taken over for World War I Naval service in June 1917, she was not placed in commission until her construction was completed about a year later. De Grasse briefly served in mid-Atlantic coastal waters before being returned to her owner, J.L. Redmond of New York City, in early November 1918.

The yacht, USS De Grasse in 1918
The yacht, USS De Grasse in 1918

American De Grasse 2

The second US Navy vessel to bear this name was a Crater Class Cargo vessel during World War II. With a displacement of 4,023 tons this Liberty ship was active in the Pacific Theatre from November 1943 until decommssioned in April 1946, going on to serve as a general cargo vessel after that date until being scrapped in 1970. The De Grasse was awarded three battle stars.

American De Grasse 3

The third US Navy ship to bear this name was the USS Comte de Grasse (DD-974), named for Admiral Francois-Joseph Paul, Comte de Grasse (1722-1788), was a Spruance-class destroyer built by the Ingalls Shipbuilding Division of Litton Industries at Pascagoula, Mississippi. She was laid down 4 April 1975, launched 26 March 1976 and commissioned 5 August 1978.

General Characteristics:
Class and type: Spruance-class destroyer
Displacement: 8,040 (long) tons full load
Length: 529 ft (161 m) waterline; 563 ft (172 m) overall
Beam: 55 ft (16.8 m)
Draft: 29 ft (8.8 m)
Propulsion: 4 × General Electric LM2500 gas turbines, 2 shafts, 80,000 shp (60 MW)
Speed: 32.5 knots
Range: 6,000 nautical miles (11,000 km) at 20 knots
3,300 nautical miles (6000 km) at 30 knots
Complement: 19 officers, 315 enlisted
Sensors and processing systems: AN/SPS-40 air search radar
AN/SPG-60 fire control radar
AN/SPS-55 surface search radar
AN/SPQ-9 gun fire control radar
Mk 23 TAS automatic detection and tracking radar
AN/SPS-65 Missile fire control radar
AN/SQS-53 bow mounted Active sonar
AN/SQR-19 TACTAS towed arrayPassive sonar
Electronic warfare and decoys: • AN/SLQ-32 Electronic Warfare System
• AN/SLQ-25 Nixie Torpedo Countermeasures
• Mark 36 SRBOC Decoy Launching System
• AN/SLQ-49 Inflatable Decoys
Armament: 2 x 5 in (127 mm) 54 calibre Mark 45 dual purpose guns
2 x 20 mm Phalanx CIWS Mark 15 guns
1 x 8 cell ASROC launcher (removed)
1 x 8 cell NATO Sea Sparrow Mark 29 missile launcher
2 x quadruple Harpoon missile canisters
2 x Mark 32 triple 12.75 in (324 mm) torpedo tubes (Mk 46 torpedoes)
2 x quadruple ABL Mark 43 Tomahawk missile launchers
Aircraft carried: 2 x Sikorsky SH-60 Seahawk LAMPS III helicopters.

De Grasse was decommissioned and struck in 1998, eventually being sunk as a target in 2006.

USS Comte De Grasse (DD-974) entering port at the Naval Air Station, Norfolk, Virginia
USS Comte De Grasse (DD-974) entering port at the Naval Air Station, Norfolk, Virginia

Korean War Memorial Museum

Jeffro has done it again and got the gallery back in Thomo’s Hole. That means that the Korean War Memorial Museum exhibits I’d photographed are able to be viewed again. I’ll back these up over time to a cloud service somewhere and post alternate links, however, in the interim, will take you to those albums, the albums covering the Koryo, Three Kingdoms and Chosun periods of Korean history.

Also there is some images from the Righteous Army times in the early 20th, late 19th centuries.

Henry Ebery or Henry Every

Woodcut of Henry Every
Woodcut of Henry Every

Every so often I go through the search results of Thomo’s Hole – it is quite enlightening seeing what terms people are searching for in the Hole. It also tweaks my interest and leads to some posts. Of course, if you’d like something specific you only need ask and I’ll try and accommodate.

Anyway, it was a hot weekend in Sydney, very hot, so I thought I’d add to the heat by researching unsuccessful searches to Thomo’s Hole. I came across two search terms in the logs, namely, “Henry Ebery” and then immediately after that, “Henry Every”.

Well, I may not be an intellectual genius but I do type a lot, and whilst I am not a touch typist (more chopsticks style), I am savvy enough with a keyboard to notice that “B” and “V” are next to each other and that probably the search for Henry Ebery was really someone searching for Henry Every.

The other thing I know, having been a Googler for many years now, is that search engines still are not really all that bright – unless you tell them exactly what you are looking for. So, if you search Thomo’s Hole with the terms “Henry” and “Every” in the search box, the search engine here will return an article about H.M.S. Mæander (because the Captain’s name was Henry Keppel and because (to quote from that post)

I don’t always have information about every ship that sailed however the name of this ship fascinated me

See how a search on Henry Every returns something apparently unrelated? The other article it returned was Busk’s Navies of the World – 1859 – The French I because there was mention of an Henry in there as well as an every.

Now, if a search was made for “Henry Every” – that is, with both terms inside double quotes, then the search engine would return nothing as there was nothing about Henry Every in Thomo’s hole … up until now that is 🙂

Popular Image of Every's flag
Popular Image of Every's flag

I searched for both “Henry Every” and “Henry Ebery” on the Internet. Now I am sure that my readers are not all that interested in Henry Ebery. There is a record in the 1881 census of young Henry Ebery, born in West Bromwich, Stafford in 1873, father Eli Ebery. There is also a Henry Ebery in Wales listed in the 1891 census as Henry Ebery, boarder, age 43, born in Shropshire, cattle dealer. The reference was from the census of the Hotel Keeper at 10 Lewis Terrace – the Commercial Hotel, also known as Cambrian Hotel in Alexandra Road, Aberystwyth in Wales. That is also not the type of character my readers are normally interested in. Now, if he was a cattle duffer ((rustler for those who do not understand the Australian term)) then it would be a whole lot different

However, all is not lost. Henry Every was born in Plymouth in 1653 and was a somewhat famous pirate – the picture of the woodcut here is Henry himself. He was also known as John Avary, Long Ben, and Benjamin Bridgeman. Now this is more like it for the readers of Thomo’s Hole.

What distinguishes Henry Every from most of the other pirates? Two things really. One was the taking and plundering of the Moghul ships, the Fateh Muhammed and Ganj-I-Sawaithe of around £650,000 of gold, silver and other plunder. the other was that Henry actually appears to have retired from pirating and managed to live off the fat of his jolly rogering, even allowing for the Whigs having commissioned Captain William Kidd as a pirate hunter and set him on Every’s trail (amongst others)

Every is remembered in the Shantyman song “The Ballad of Long Ben”:

In ’94 we took the Charles and set Gibson ashore
And set a course for southern seas, to sail for evermore
Round the Cape in a hurricane with the devil on our beam
And clear to Newgate London Town you could have heard us scream:

Here’s to gentlemen at sea tonight, and a toast to all free men
And when the devil comes to take us home, we’ll drink
To old Long Ben!

Now off the coast of Hindoostan we spied a musselman
She’d 60 guns and musket men, but still away she ran
“Ho!”, cried Ben and ran the grinning skull atop the mast
“I’ll wager half my share me lads, there’s not a ship this fast!”

Here’s to gentlemen at sea tonight and a toast to all free men
And when the devil comes to take us home, he’ll drink
With old Long Ben!

We ran her down off Malabar as she lay becalmed
And there beneath the burning sun stood Al Ibrahim Khan
He twirled his ‘stache and raised his sword and gave a might roar
Then cowered like a dog below and hid amongst his whores

Here’s to gentlemen at sea tonight, and a toast to all free men
And when the devil comes to take us home, we’ll drink
To old Long Ben!

We turned the Fancy from the wind and ran out 40 guns
And soon the sky was filled with smoke that hid us from the sun
Then up and down the ship we fought, until the decks ran red
And when the fight was done we drank and this is what we said:

Here’s to gentlemen at sea tonight, and a toast to all free men
And when the devil comes to take us home, we’ll drink
To old Long Ben!

For thirteen days aboard the Ganj, we made a merry sport
A thousand pounds of Mughal gold, and whisky, rum and port
Some men we shot and some we walked and some of them did hang
And while we made free with the girls, well this is what we sang:

Here’s to gentlemen at sea tonight, and a toast to all free men
And when the devil comes to take us home, we’ll drink
To old Long Ben!

Now there is something about Henry Every 😆

Korea DMZ

I ran across a website called Korea DMZ which is based around the De-Militarised Zone between North and South Korea. This means that there is a lot of information on the website concerning the Korean War, with sections covering the main combatants from the UN side (I never realised the Ethiopians and Colombians served in the UN forces, for example), the countries providing support (the Lebanon and Liberia were surprises for me there) and brief overviews of many of the engagements. An interesting website for those with an interest in the Korean War as well as good place to start for an introduction to some parts of it.

As a sample, the following is excerpted from that website about the Battle at Baengma-goji:

The battle at Baengma-goji was a defensive campaign waged by the 9th Division of the Korean armed forces (commanded by Major General Kim Jong-o) for nine days in order to secure their 395-meter Hill (Baengma-goji) north of Cherwon against the invading Chinese 38th Army in December, 1952, when the position operations were at the fiercest in the course of the Korean War. Baengma-goji, part of the area controlled by the U.S. 9th Corps, was considered as the most important outpost hill with a good command over Yeokgokcheon Stream Valley, especially when a major supply route to Cheorwon was to be secured by the U.S. 8th Army. At that time, the Korean 9th Division had deployed two battalions of the 30th regiment on Baengma-goji and had reserved the 28th regiment right behind the hill.

As the website is part of a South Korean tour operation, some of the information may have been flavoured a little but then that is a risk no matter where one looks for information. For example, the following about the Evolution of the DMZ may cause some disagreement as well as indicating some of the problems reading the site written in Kor-English:

As the Second World War had ended with surrender of Japan, Korean peninsular met liberation, as agreed by allied force at the time of the war. Korean peninsula were divided by the 38 boundary line, the north of the boundary line were stationed by the soviet army were and the south of the boundary line were stationed by American army forming 38 line as the military boundary line.

The end of 19th Century, the world powerful countries developed power competition to make Korean peninsula under their dominant. In East Asia region, the Japan joined that world power rank of imperialism by succeeding in enhancing the wealth and military strength of a country in1967.

However, a useful site to start gathering some information on the Korean War.

Korean War Memorial Museum

Korea War Memorial MuseumThe Korean War Memorial Museum notes about it’s raison d’être that “since the end of the Korean War many important war records have been disappearing and that generation [that fought in that war] has also been disappearing”. Korea was established through a number of struggles and the War Memorial Museum was proposed and built to pull all this information together.

So, the purpose of the Korean War Memorial Museum was for the collection, preservation and exhibition of historical relics for all the wars that Koreans fought in. At the front of the museum, there is also a plaza area that is there to serve as a reminder of the past sacrifices in war. It should also be noted that the museum was built to “commemorate loyal martyrs and their services to the nation.” There are, as a result, a couple of areas that most westerners would consider a little “heroic” in their appearance and what is displayed.

Follow this link to read more about the museum.

Korean War Era Photos

Guano Island blog has some Korean War photos on show. These were taken by Guano Island’s father and there are a couple of interesting shots in there, one of an M4 in particular.

Worth having a look for the wargamers amongst us.

There is also a link on that blog to a Picassa online album that has more photos.