First of the Ironclads: The Armoured Batteries of the 1850’s

By G. A. Osbon, published August 1964


Although HMS Warrior is thought to be the first ironclad warship, in fact armoured batteries were developed in time for the Crimean War, but they never saw service. This article details the British design, birth and demise of five armoured batteries, with wooden hulls: Aetna, Glatton, Meteor, Thunder and Trusty, and four iron-hull armoured batteries Erebus, Terror and Thunderbolt. The first of these arrived at the Crimea in time to be laid up for winter 1855, with peace concluded the next spring. Testing and evaluation continued for some years, which directly led to iron-clad fleet warships. The French had, in fact, developed this type of vessel before the British, with equally poor success.

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Filed under: Crimean War | Mediterranean
Subjects include: Shipbuilding & Design

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