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The destroyer Campbeltown is not only famous for her part in the commando raid on the St. Nazaire dry dock in 1942, but is also representative of an important type. Built as the USS Buchanan (DD131), she was one of over 270 flush-decked destroyers put into service towards the end of World War I. Sent to Great Britain under the Lend-Lease program and renamed Campbeltown, she spent eighteen arduous months on convoy duty, before being selected for a hazardous mission to deny the Nazi warship Tirpitz the use of repair facilities at the French port of St. Nazaire. During the desperate but successful operation, the Campbeltown rammed the port's lock gates. Eleven hours later, delayed action fuses set off four-tons of explosives that destroyed both the ship and the docks. Over 200 perspective and 3-view drawings accompany the in-depth description of this distinguished ship along with a large-scale plan on the jacket cover's reverse that is new with this reprint.
Al Ross II is an American-born educator and ship illustrator. He is the author of several books. He is currently working with John Lambert on a joint effort entitled Allied Coastal Forces. His ship drawings have appeared in a number of books and journals, including Norman Friedman's design history on U.S. Navy Small Combatants and Nautical Quarterly.
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