'Nightraiders', the second volume of the trilogy that started with 'Home Waters', is now available to order from the American publisher, Heritage Books, at a cost of $80 ($40 plus $40 p&p to the UK). This equates to £63.82 at the current exchange rate.
Alternatively, signed copies are available via the website’s Shop for £30 (including £4 UK p&p) with £10 going towards Project Vernon.
Nightraiders: U.S. Navy, Royal Navy, Royal Australian Navy, and Royal Netherlands Navy Mine Forces Battling the Japanese in the Pacific in World War II. Cdr. David D. Bruhn, USN (Retired) and Lt. Cdr. Rob Hoole, RN (Retired).
As war with Japan was imminent, the British laid minefields off Hong Kong and Singapore; the Dutch in the Netherlands East Indies; and the Australians off New Zealand and Australia, in an attempt to prevent enemy invasion. Ships hastily converted to this task were referred to as “night raiders.” Duty aboard a “floating ammunition dump” was hazardous enough; missions carried out under the cloak of darkness increased the odds of survival in enemy waters.
As MacArthur, Halsey, and Spruance’s forces advanced toward Japan, minesweepers worked with “night raiders”—clearing waters off landing beaches, while minelayers strove to deny the enemy freedom of the sea. Australian seaplanes (“Black Cats”) flew long, perilous night-missions to mine Japanese harbors, and British submarines and planes joined in the attack on shipping. Late in the war, USAAF bombers ringed the Japanese home islands with thousands of mines.
When hostilities ended, war-weary “sweep sailors” remained in Asian waters—ridding the sea of “shipkillers.” The little-known efforts of these valiant men are illuminated in this rare look into history. One hundred and forty-four photographs, maps, and diagrams; appendices; and an index to full-names, places and subjects add value to this work.
'Home Waters', the first volume of the trilogy launched last year, contains a foreword by MCDOA past-President Rear Admiral Paddy McAlpine CBE and a section describing the history of HMS VERNON. Signed copies are still available from the website’s Shop at the same price (£30 including £4 UK p&p) with £10 going towards Project Vernon.
Home Waters: Royal Navy, Royal Canadian Navy, and U.S. Navy Mine Forces Battling U-Boats in World War I - David Bruhn and Rob Hoole.
In WWI under a crippling naval blockade of its North Sea ports which ultimately resulted in the starvation of thousands of its citizens and as land warfare in Europe drags on, Germany endeavours to counter-blockade Britain via U-boat attacks on shipping and by mining waters round the British Isles.
Hundreds of fishing vessels from every port and harbour in Britain are pressed into minesweeping duties and minelayers sow fields to restrict and destroy German vessels. Their efforts allow the powerful Royal Navy to hold the German Navy in port — except for occasional skirmishes, including the Battle of Jutland. American destroyers hunt U-boats in British waters, while minelayers create a barrier between the Orkney Islands and Norway, to try to deny the enemy entry into the Atlantic.
Desperate, Germany mounts a U-boat offensive off North America in the summer 1918, to induce the U.S. to bring her destroyers home. Although nearly one hundred vessels are sunk, this action fails. Germany surrenders in late autumn 1918 and allied vessels are left with the deadly task of removing thousands of mines laid in the war. One hundred and fifty photographs, maps, and diagrams; appendices; and an index to full-names, places and subjects add value to this work.
The third volume of the trilogy, titled 'Enemy Waters', will deal with minewarfare (minelaying, minesweeping and naval bomb & mine disposal at sea and on land) against Germany and Italy during the Second World War. It is due to be released next year.