Despite its recent decline in size and influence, for much of the twentieth century the Royal Navy was a major player in world history. Its senior officers carried out – and sometimes made – British policy in peace and war, but with the exception of a few star figures the details of their careers have never been published. This book is the first volume of a major study intended to provide a resumé of the service lives of every flag officer, in the style of the great nineteenth century biographical dictionaries of Marshall and O’Byrne. Every entry is based on primary sources, including the Navy’s confidential personnel files, cross-referenced with general historical data and, in the case of living officers, correspondence with the subjects themselves.
The book comes with a CD which contains the service histories and careers of 336 most senior admirals on the Navy List from 1900 onwards. The length of each entry varies with the importance of the officer covered, but each includes both an outline of their careers and significant dates, like promotions and awards. In all, the CD contains more than 600,000 words – a truly epic work. The majority are not even included in the Dictionary of National Biography, and as such, this work will be a boon to historians, and invaluable to genealogists. A monumental and unique naval historical resource.
Biographical Dictionary of the Twentieth-Century Royal Navy Admirals of the Fleet and Admirals
The most detailed study ever published of senior Royal Navy career officers. Alastair Wilson’s dictionary draws on primary sources including confidential personnel files and correspondence with living officers. An indispensable work of reference for anyone interested in British Naval history.