Portsmouth in Hampshire County, England, United Kingdom
Beware of the Wolf
Britannia ruled the waves when Queen Victoria came to the throne. Wooden sailing ships were on the decline, making way for new maritime innovations like the paddle steamer, Great Western and the iron-hulled, screw driven SS Great Britain.
Steam engines had been installed in some wooden ships of the line, and smaller vessels had been constructed with the new types of propulsion or iron hulls, but it was a shock when the French started building the first armoured wooden-hulled ship. La Gloire was launched in 1859.
As long as Britain had no ironclads, Lawrence Gloire was destined to be, as Emperor Napoleon III described "a wolf wreaking havoc among sheep.” With news of the construction of La Gloire and naval expansion across the Channel it was Britain's rivalry with France that lay behind the building of HMS Warrior.
On 18 January 1859 the new First Sea Lord, Sir John Pakington, announced that the government would embark on an emergency programme to reconstruct the navy. This allowed Sir Baldwin Wake-Walker, Surveyor of the Navy, and his Chief Constructor, Isaac Watts, to produce a devastating response the world's first iron-hulled armoured warship. Warrior - the ship that revolutionised naval architecture.
Did you know
Following a royal visit to Cherbourg Prince Albert asked
“The war preparations of the French are immense - what have we got to meet this new engine of war?”
( inset – lower left )
Launched in 1859 La Gloire was designed as a wooden ship, clad in iron 12cm (4.5 inches) thick. At 77.8m (255 feet) in length and displacing 5,630 tons, La Gloire was 40% smaller than Warrior.
With a crew of 570 men and some 36 muzzle loading guns she was quickly hailed as a success however there were some problems: The guns were close together, and the gun-ports were too close to the waterline- making them very difficult to fight in anything other than a calm sea. In addition, the timber used was of poor quality - unable to dry out because of the iron armour, the hull rotted quickly and she was scrapped in 1883.
Location. 50° 47.917′ N, 1° 6.51′ W. Marker is in Portsmouth, England, in Hampshire County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Route B2154 and Clock Street, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. Located on the HMS Warrior pier in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. Marker is in this post office area: Portsmouth, England PO1 3QX, United Kingdom.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Figurehead (here, next to this marker); Left behind by progress The First Black Battleship (here, next to this marker); Warrior – the ultimate deterrent (here, next to this marker); A Sad and Lonely Journey (a few steps from this marker); RAF – HSL 102 (within shouting distance of this marker); Labour of Love (within shouting distance of this marker); Homecoming (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Portsmouth.
Also see . . .
1. HMS Warrior. (Submitted on September 11, 2018, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.)
2. HMS Warrior (1860) on Wikipedia. (Submitted on September 11, 2018, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.)
Categories. • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on September 11, 2018. This page originally submitted on September 11, 2018, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut. This page has been viewed 49 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on September 11, 2018, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.