Sino-French Naval War, 1884-1885

Published: September 8th, 2012     
Product Image
Author: Piotr Olender
Reviewed by: 
Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Company: MMP Books
Company: MMP Books
ISBN #: 978-83-61421-53-5
Other Publication Information: A4 format, 128 pages, battle maps, historical photos, drawings, tables
Price: $31.75
Product / Stock #: 3104

Like many modelers, my knowledge of history is never as complete as I want it to be, and when MMP issued The Sino-French Naval War, I found a great opportunity to learn more about the conflict that occurred in 1884-1885.

For those of you unfamiliar with these actions, during this time colonization was the policy that many countries pursued to expand growth, secure mineral and trade rights, and protect their people and interests. In this case, the French wanted Vietnam also to protect their Catholic Missions.

Piotr Olender has researched the war in depth, including the ships and people involved and also the reasons behind the start of the war. The book starts with a description of the actions leading up to the start of the conflict, including the bombardment of Hue and the vessels involved. The text follows the start of the war, including all the major battles and counter attacks, and has many maps describing the action both at sea and on the many rivers. Finally, the end of the hostilities is covered.

What really sets this book apart (and makes it a great reference for modelers) are the period pictures and the drawings of the ships involved. The period pictures of the areas and ships are superb and cover almost all the major ships. Also included are pictures of the armament used by the French and Chinese. An example of this is an excellent reference photo of the 37mm French Hotchkiss revolver canon which was one of the first rapid fire cannons. There are drawings of the ships involved, showing their profiles. There are tables of the armament showing their bores, barrel length and weight, manufacturer, and muzzle velocity.

This book is recommended to all history buffs and modelers, too! It is well written, thoroughly illustrated, and a great insight into the history of naval warfare in the late 19th century. My thanks to Mushroom Model Publications for the review sample and to IPMS/USA for the chance to review it.

  • Sample drawing page
    Sample drawing page
  • Sample table page
    Sample table page
  • Sample photo page
    Sample photo page

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