ShipIndex’s range of content is “any named vessel in a resource in English” – meaning that we list ships from the ancient Athenian navy, from the Middle Ages, from basically every European war and most Asian ones (except for the land wars, I suppose), to 19th century merchant vessels, modern-day freighters, and anything in between. And many of the resources we include – particularly the indexes to journals, such as Mariner’s Mirror, American Neptune, and Nautical Research Journal –cover wide temporal and geographic ranges.
But there are times when it’s good to know how much coverage there is in a specific area, so I thought it would be useful to highlight a few of the resources for various topics. For example, we have a lot of different resources that cover the US Civil War. Here are some titles of particular relevance to US Civil War researchers, which are already included in the ShipIndex database:
- Beach, Edward L. The United States Navy: 200 Years. New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1986.
- Bunting, William Henry. Portrait of a Port: Boston, 1852-1914. Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press, 1971.
- Campbell, R. Thomas. Sea Hawk of the Confederacy: Lt. Charles W. Read and the Confederate Navy. Shippensburg, PA: Burd Street Press, 2000.
- Canney, Donald L. Sailing Warships of the US Navy. London: Chatham Publishing, 2001.
- Chapelle, Howard I. The History of the American Sailing Navy: The Ships and Their Development. New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1949.
- Mooney, James L., and Naval Historical Center, et al. Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (online). Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Navy : Naval Historical Center.
- Mooney, James L., and Naval Historical Center, et al. Confederate Forces Afloat (online). Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Navy : Naval Historical Center.
- Silverstone, Paul H. Civil War Navies, 1855-1883. Annapolis, Md.: Naval Institute Press, 2001.
- Williams, Greg H. Civil and Merchant Vessel Encounters with United States Navy Ships, 1800-2000. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Co., 2002.
I’m working to add Iron Afloat: The Story of the Confederate Armorclads by William N. Still, soon. I’ve also started working on a really big project – the indexes to the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies and Navies, and their supplements. (Those will all take a while to complete.) What else should I add, that would further enhance our coverage of the US Civil War?