Austro Hungarian Navy

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NeoVisionist
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Austro Hungarian Navy

Postby NeoVisionist » 08 May 2017 01:27

In developing an alternate timeline whereupon Hitler enlists in the Austro Hungarian navy before his mother's death, I'm after a few pertinent facts; I know that the navy was relatively multinational, with Italians especially serving in considerable capacity. Did Austro Hungarian ships ever call into the port of Naples in southern Italy? Did any ships visit the United States or did they stick to the Med? What about the far east? A quick check of Italian websites doesn't reveal much. Officers were required to be multilingual: were English and Italian taught at the Austro Hungarian Naval Academy? Finally, did Austro Hungarian naval intelligence operate in British territories before the first world war?

James A Pratt III
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Re: Austro Hungarian Navy

Postby James A Pratt III » 14 May 2017 04:04

I know there was a visit to the US by one A-H warship pre WW I but don't know the year This may be in mentioned in Warship international magazine. The KUK navy did have a cruiser in China pre WWI. I would say their ships did visit Naples pre war. Intelligence wise I would say they would mainly be operating in Italy and possibly the Balkans during WW I. There could be an agent or two in British territory. Yes I believe KUK naval officers were taught both English and Italian and other languages.

NeoVisionist
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Re: Austro Hungarian Navy

Postby NeoVisionist » 02 Jul 2017 16:45

Thanks :-)

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pikeshot1600
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Re: Austro Hungarian Navy

Postby pikeshot1600 » 03 Sep 2017 23:42

The k.u.k. navy is an interesting topic. Many people are surprised to hear A-H had a navy at all, but the service, and its fleet, had several very necessary purposes. "Showing the flag" was one, and two cruisers (SMS Aspern and SMS Sankt Georg) visited the US for the exposition of the 300th anniversary of Jamestown in 1907.

A Chinese presence was almost continuous (not sure) from the late 1890s until 1914. I did read that Austrian sailors in a landing party assisted US marines in protecting US citizens during riots in Shanghai before the Boxer rebellion. During the Boxers, SMS Zenta was on station in China and A-H sailors were involved in defending the international legations in Peking. The old cruiser SMS Kaiserin Elisabeth was stationed in China in the year or so before WW I.
Last edited by pikeshot1600 on 04 Sep 2017 02:57, edited 5 times in total.

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pikeshot1600
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Re: Austro Hungarian Navy

Postby pikeshot1600 » 04 Sep 2017 00:01

As a couple of resources, there are two websites with interesting photos of the ships of the navy, its yards and harbors, and the men. There are also two good books that can shed light on its progress and its problems:

http://www.kuk-kriegsmarine.at (in German).

http://www.kriegsmarine.at (German with an English option).

Laurence Sondhaus, The Naval Policy of Austria-Hungary, 1867-1918 (Purdue, 1994).

Milan Vego, Austro-Hungarian Naval Policy, 1904-14 (London, 1996). Both books are available through Amazon

There is also an interesting book by a former kuk officer published in 1967 by the US Naval Institute Press - Anton Sokol, The Imperial and Royal Austro-Hungarian Navy. It appears to be out of print, but may be in libraries or available through used book dealers.

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Re: Austro Hungarian Navy

Postby pikeshot1600 » 04 Sep 2017 01:36

^^ In addition to the resources above, there are two Osprey titles recently published. One is on A-H battleships, 1914-18 and another on A-H cruisers and destroyers, 1914-18. These are readily available, and they have enough information to be of interest.

Another old title is not too common, and if found is very expensive. It is Rene Greger, Austro-Hungarian Warships of WW I (Ian Allen, 1976?) As I recall, the photographs in this volume are not of a high standard, and I have seen many others of much better quality in on-line sources.


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