Dispatch boat

Dispatch boats were small boats, and sometimes large ships, tasked to carry military dispatches from ship to ship or from ship to shore or, in some cases from shore to shore. Dispatch boats were employed when other means of transmitting a message was not possible or safe or as quick.

Dispatch boats, which performed their dispatch-carrying duties only on a temporary basis, should not be confused with packet ships—sometimes called packet boats or paquetbots—which were cargo ships which also routinely carried the mail from port to port.

Generally, dispatch boats served the military, and paquetbots served commerce.

Use of term by the U.S. Navy

Dispatch boat was a term used by the United States Navy in its journal accounts to describe boats which carried messages, or mail—otherwise termed dispatches—between high-ranking military officials aboard other ships or to land-based destinations.

Dispatch boats during the American Revolution

In 1776 the Continental Navy ship Lynch was assigned dispatch boat duty and, after delivering her secret dispatches in France, set sail for the United States with French secret dispatches, only to be captured by the British, but not before destroying the French dispatches.[1]

Dispatch boat race during the historic Battle of Trafalgar

Once the Battle of Trafalgar had been decided in favor of the British in October 1805, the honor of delivering the news of the victory as well as the loss of Admiral Lord Nelson belonged to the dispatch boat which first brought the news to the Admiralty in London.

A 1000-mile sea race from the location of the naval battle resulted between Lt. Lapenotiere in HMS Pickle and Captain Sykes in HMS Nautilus with the Pickle reaching England first to deliver the dispatches to the Admiralty. For his outstanding effort in the race, Lt. Lapenotiere was awarded the then huge sum of 500 pound sterling cash prize and, in addition, was promoted to Commander.[2]

Dispatch boats during the American Civil War

The American Civil War employed a large number of dispatch boats, such as Massasoit, Gladiolus and Geranium among numerous others. General Ulysses S. Grant depended on dispatch boats during his Virginia campaign to correspond with Union Navy ships on the James River.

Dispatch boats during the late 19th and early 20th centuries

The US Navy did not have enough dispatch boats available during the Spanish–American War of 1898, so private yachts and tugboats used by newspapers were frequently tasked by the Navy to carry messages.[3] USS Vega was a US dispatch boat during World War I.

Demise of the dispatch boat

Dispatch boats became largely unnecessary with the advent of underwater cable and shipboard radio technology in the early 20th century. However, there was a brief reprise during the Falklands War in 1982. CS Iris, a cable laying ship owned by British Telecom, was taken up from trade by the British Government. She ferried supplies and dispatches (including troop's mail from home) between elements of the fleet and between Ascension Island and the Falkland Islands – she also recovered urgent supplies that were air-dropped in the South Atlantic by Royal Air Force, C-130 Hercules aircraft.[4]

Gallery

Dispatch-boatNo218-1915a

Imperial Russian dispatch boat No. 218 (former torpedo boat), after striking a mine in 1915

Roksana1893-1924

Imperial Russian dispatch boat Roksana

Tug Knickerbocker before World War I

The tug Knickerbocker, prior to her United States Navy service as tug, minesweeper, and dispatch boat

See also

References

  1. ^ "Lynch". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. Department of the Navy – Navy Historical Center. Retrieved February 1, 2011.
  2. ^ Adkins, Roy (2004). "Chapter 18". Nelson’s Trafalgar, the battle that changed the world. New York City: Viking (Penguin). ISBN 0-670-03448-7.
  3. ^ Milton, Joyce. The Yellow Kids: Foreign correspondents in the heyday of yellow journalism. Harper and Row, New York 1989.
  4. ^ "FKD 746". Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 5 March 2013.
This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.
Aviso

An aviso (Portuguese and Spanish term for "advice", "notice" or "warning", formerly also an adviso) was originally a kind of dispatch boat or "advice boat". The term was later adopted by the French and Portuguese navies to classify their medium-sized warships designed for colonial service. The term continued to be used in the French Navy to classify the D'Estienne d'Orves–class patrol frigates until 2012, when the remaining ships of the class were reclassified as offshore patrol ships. It is similar to the modern use of "sloop" in other countries.

The Dictionnaire de la Marine Française 1788–1792 (by Nicolas-Charles Romme) describes avisos as "small boats designed to carry orders or dispatches". This use became obsolete with the development of means of communicating detailed information at a distance.

French World War I avisos, used also during World War II, had displacement 300–700 tons, speeds of 13–20 knots, main armaments usually of two 100 mm guns, two 138 mm guns, or four 100 mm guns. Colonial avisos, such as the Bougainville-class aviso intended for overseas service, were larger.

The Portuguese Navy used avisos to operate in the waters of the Portuguese Empire. The Portuguese built 1st rate avisos (Afonso de Albuquerque class) of 2,400 tons and 2nd rate avisos (Gonçalo Velho and Pedro Nunes classes) of 1,200 to 1,700 tons. In 1932, the Portuguese Flower-class sloops were also classified as 2nd rate avisos.

The term is now used to include combat-capable ships larger than patrol boats, but smaller than corvettes. They typically have roles in anti-submarine warfare and coastal defence. In NATO classification they are usually recognized as corvettes.

The Argentine Navy has several ships classified as avisos. ARA Alférez Sobral, an 800-ton aviso used for non-combat tasks, built as a US Navy fleet tug, was attacked and damaged during the 1982 Falklands War.

Beijiao 39-class dispatch boat

The Beijiao 39 class dispatch boat is a class of little known naval auxiliary ship currently in service with the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN).The name of this class is after the first unit commissioned, with the exact type still remains unknown, and only a single unit of this class have been confirmed in active service as of mid-2010s. Beijiao 39 has a latticework mast structure that no other dispatch boats in Chinese navy adopts.Beijiao 39 class series ships in PLAN service are designated by a combination of two Chinese characters followed by three-digit number. The second Chinese character is Jiao (交), short for Jiao-Tong-Ting (交通艇), meaning dispatch boat (ferry) in Chinese, because these ships are classified as dispatch boats. The first Chinese character denotes which fleet the ship is service with, with East (Dong, 东) for East Sea Fleet, North (Bei, 北) for North Sea Fleet, and South (Nan, 南) for South Sea Fleet. However, the pennant numbers may have changed due to the change of Chinese naval ships naming convention.

Beijiao 57-class dispatch boat

Beijiao 57 class dispatch boat is a class of little known naval auxiliary ship currently in service with the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). The name of this class is after the first unit commissioned, with the exact type still remains unknown, and a total of eleven units of this class have been confirmed in active service as of mid-2010s, making this class the most numerous dispatch boats in service with the Chinese navy (as of mid-2010s).Beijiao 57 class series ships in PLAN service are designated by a combination of two Chinese characters followed by three-digit number. The second Chinese character is Jiao (交), short for Jiao-Tong-Ting (交通艇), meaning dispatch boat (ferry) in Chinese, because these ships are classified as dispatch boats. The first Chinese character denotes which fleet the ship is service with, with East (Dong, 东) for East Sea Fleet, North (Bei, 北) for North Sea Fleet, and South (Nan, 南) for South Sea Fleet. However, the pennant numbers may have changed due to the change of Chinese naval ships naming convention.

Beijiao 75-class dispatch boat

Beijiao 75 class dispatch boat is a class of little known naval auxiliary ship currently in service with the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). The name of this class is after the first unit commissioned, with the exact type still remains unknown, and a total of three units of this class have been confirmed in active service as of mid-2010s.Beijiao 75 class series ships in PLAN service are designated by a combination of two Chinese characters followed by three-digit number. The second Chinese character is Jiao (交), short for Jiao-Tong-Ting (交通艇), meaning dispatch boat (ferry) in Chinese, because these ships are classified as dispatch boats. The first Chinese character denotes which fleet the ship is service with, with East (Dong, 东) for East Sea Fleet, North (Bei, 北) for North Sea Fleet, and South (Nan, 南) for South Sea Fleet. However, the pennant numbers may have changed due to the change of Chinese naval ships naming convention.

Beijiao 77-class dispatch boat

Beijiao 77 class dispatch boat is a class of little known naval auxiliary ship currently in service with the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). The name of this class is after the first unit commissioned, with the exact type still remains unknown, and only a single unit of this class have been confirmed in active service as of mid-2010s.Beijiao 77 class series ships in PLAN service are designated by a combination of two Chinese characters followed by three-digit number. The second Chinese character is Jiao (交), short for Jiao-Tong-Ting (交通艇), meaning dispatch boat (ferry) in Chinese, because these ships are classified as dispatch boats. The first Chinese character denotes which fleet the ship is service with, with East (Dong, 东) for East Sea Fleet, North (Bei, 北) for North Sea Fleet, and South (Nan, 南) for South Sea Fleet. However, the pennant numbers may have changed due to the change of Chinese naval ships naming convention.

Dongjiao 03-class dispatch boat

Dongjiao 03 class dispatch boat is a class of little known naval auxiliary ship currently in service with the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). The name of this class is after the first unit commissioned, with the exact type still remains unknown, and only a single unit of this class have been confirmed in active service as of mid-2010s.Dongjiao 03 class series ships in PLAN service are designated by a combination of two Chinese characters followed by three-digit number. The second Chinese character is Jiao (交), short for Jiao-Tong-Ting (交通艇), meaning dispatch boat (ferry) in Chinese, because these ships are classified as dispatch boats. The first Chinese character denotes which fleet the ship is service with, with East (Dong, 东) for East Sea Fleet, North (Bei, 北) for North Sea Fleet, and South (Nan, 南) for South Sea Fleet. However, the pennant numbers may have changed due to the change of Chinese naval ships naming convention.

Dongjiao 82-class dispatch boat

Dongjiao 82 class dispatch boat is a class of naval auxiliary ship currently in service with the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). The name of this class is after the first unit commissioned, with the exact type still remains unknown, and only a single unit of this class have been confirmed in active service as of mid-2010s.Dongjiao 82 class series ships in PLAN service are designated by a combination of two Chinese characters followed by three-digit number. The second Chinese character is Jiao (交), short for Jiao-Tong-Ting (交通艇), meaning dispatch boat (ferry) in Chinese, because these ships are classified as dispatch boats. The first Chinese character denotes which fleet the ship is service with, with East (Dong, 东) for East Sea Fleet, North (Bei, 北) for North Sea Fleet, and South (Nan, 南) for South Sea Fleet. However, the pennant numbers may have changed due to the change of Chinese naval ships naming convention.

Japanese cruiser Miyako

Miyako (宮古) was an unprotected cruiser of the early Imperial Japanese Navy. The name Miyako comes from the Miyako Islands, one of the three island groups making up current Okinawa prefecture. Miyako was used by the Imperial Japanese Navy primarily as an aviso (dispatch boat) for scouting, reconnaissance and delivery of high priority messages.

Japanese cruiser Takao (1888)

Takao (高雄) was an unprotected cruiser of the Imperial Japanese Navy. The name Takao comes from the Mount Takao, near Kyoto. Takao was used by the Imperial Japanese Navy primarily as an aviso or dispatch boat, for scouting, reconnaissance and the conveying of important messages.

Japanese cruiser Tatsuta (1894)

Tatsuta (龍田) was an unprotected cruiser of the Imperial Japanese Navy. The name Tatsuta comes from the Tatsuta River, near Nara. Tatsuta was used by the Imperial Japanese Navy primarily as an aviso (dispatch boat) used for scouting, reconnaissance and delivery of priority messages.

Japanese cruiser Yaeyama

Yaeyama (八重山) was an unprotected cruiser of the Imperial Japanese Navy. The name Yaeyama comes from the Yaeyama Islands, the southernmost of the three island groups making up current Okinawa prefecture. Yaeyama was used by the Imperial Japanese Navy primarily as an aviso (dispatch boat) for scouting, reconnaissance and delivery of high priority messages.

Nanjiao 83-class dispatch boat

Nanjiao 83 class dispatch boat is a class of little known naval auxiliary ship currently in service with the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). The name of this class is after the first unit commissioned, with the exact type still remains unknown, and only a single unit of this class have been confirmed in active service as of mid-2010s.Nanjiao 83 class series ships in PLAN service are designated by a combination of two Chinese characters followed by three-digit number. The second Chinese character is Jiao (交), short for Jiao-Tong-Ting (交通艇), meaning dispatch boat (ferry) in Chinese, because these ships are classified as dispatch boats. The first Chinese character denotes which fleet the ship is service with, with East (Dong, 东) for East Sea Fleet, North (Bei, 北) for North Sea Fleet, and South (Nan, 南) for South Sea Fleet. However, the pennant numbers may have changed due to the change of Chinese naval ships naming convention.

Nanjiao 90-class dispatch boat

Nanjiao 90 class dispatch boat is a class of little known naval auxiliary ship currently in service with the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). The name of this class is after the first unit commissioned, with the exact type still remains unknown, and a total of two units of this class have been confirmed in active service as of mid-2010s. Nanjiao 90 class has a narrow landing ramp built in the bow, the only Chinese naval dispatch boat with this feature (as of mid 2010).Nanjiao 90 class series ships in PLAN service are designated by a combination of two Chinese characters followed by three-digit number. The second Chinese character is Jiao (交), short for Jiao-Tong-Ting (交通艇), meaning dispatch boat (ferry) in Chinese, because these ships are classified as dispatch boats. The first Chinese character denotes which fleet the ship is service with, with East (Dong, 东) for East Sea Fleet, North (Bei, 北) for North Sea Fleet, and South (Nan, 南) for South Sea Fleet. However, the pennant numbers may have changed due to the change of Chinese naval ships naming convention.

USS Ella (1862)

The first USS Ella was a steamer acquired by the Union Navy during the American Civil War.

She was used by the Union Navy as a picket and patrol vessel, as well as a dispatch boat, on Confederate waterways.

USS Geranium (1863)

USS Geranium (1863) was a steamship acquired by the Union Navy during the American Civil War for the purpose of using her as a tugboat in support of Union ships on the blockade of Southern waterways. However, in addition to her tug duties, she also served as a picket ship, dispatch boat, supply runner and other duties assigned to her by the Navy.

USS Glasgow (1863)

USS Glasgow (1863) was a blockade runner captured by the Union Navy during the American Civil War. She was used by the Union Navy principally as a dispatch boat and storeship in support of the blockade of the ports of the Confederate States of America.

USS Ida

USS Ida (1863) was a steamer acquired by the Union Navy during the American Civil War. She was used as a towboat and dispatch boat by the Navy, and she provided her services to ships in the blockade squadrons.

Ida was chartered by the Navy in New Orleans, Louisiana, 3 February 1863 and purchased 6 March.

USS Lynx II (SP-730)

Note: USS Lynx II (SP-730) should not be confused with patrol vessel USS Lynx (SP-2), which served in the United States Navy during the same period.USS Lynx II (SP-730), later USS SP-730, was an armed motorboat that served in the United States Navy as a patrol vessel and harbor dispatch boat from 1917 to 1919.

Lynx II was built as a private motorboat of the same name for Nathaniel F. Ayer of Boston, Massachusetts, in 1917 by Herreshoff Manufacturing Company at Bristol, Rhode Island, designed with Navy patrol service in mind. The U.S. Navy purchased her from Ayer on 14 June 1917. She was enrolled in the Naval Coast Defense Reserve on 21 June 1917, then commissioned on 9 July 1917 at Boston with Chief Boatswain's Mate S. O. Joyce, USNRF, in command for service during World War I.

Assigned to the 1st Naval District, Lynx II throughout the period of the United States' participation in World War I served as a dispatch boat and dispatch and harbor patrol boat at Boston. She patrolled the Massachusetts coast from Boston to Provincetown. She also guided arriving and departing merchant ships through the defensive sea area of the Port of Boston. Probably to avoid confusion with patrol boat USS Lynx (SP-2)—another Ayer-built boat -- Lynx II was renamed USS SP-730 in 1918.

SP-730 was decommissioned on 19 May 1919. She was sold on 2 September 1919 to Kemp Machinery Company of Baltimore, Maryland.

Yodo-class cruiser

The two Yodo-class dispatch ship (淀型通報艦, Yodo-gata tsūhōkan) were a class of small, high-speed, dispatch ships built for the Imperial Japanese Navy. Although classified officially rated as a tsūhōkan, meaning dispatch boat or aviso, the class were essentially small protected cruisers. The Yodo class was followed by the larger, more conventional Chikuma class.

Aircraft carriers
Battleships
Cruisers
Escort
Transport
Patrol craft
Fast attack craft
Mine warfare
Command and support
Submarines
Miscellaneous

Languages

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.