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Statistics of unique ships

Colonial ship Eritrea

Dates of service: construction started 1935, launched 1936, first commissioned 1937, uncommissioned 1948.
Shipyards: Castellammare
Dimensions: Length 96.9 m Width 13.3 m Draught 4.7 m
Displacement: Standard 2200 ton, Normal load 2969 ton, Full load 3117 ton
Speed max.: 20 knots
HP: 9100 (diesel-electrical engine)
Autonomy: 6950 miles at 11.8 knots
Armament: 4 - 120/45, 2 - 40/39, 4 - 13.2, minelayer ability, submarines support systems
Crew: 234
Project: gen. d'Esposito

History: Eritrea was constructed in 1935/37, to do duties typical of a colonial ship, from those of a cruiser to submarines support and troop transport. When A.O.I. (Italian Oriental Africa) was occupied by English, Eritrea violated the naval blockade and succeeded to go to Japan, starting from Massaua. At armistice it succeeded to escape from Japan and to go to Ceylon. After the war it was yielded to France. This Country used it in colonial service with the name Francis Garnier. It was then declassed to target ship, and was sunk during an air attack drill in Pacific Ocean in 1966.

colonial ship Eritrea crew
The crew of colonial ship Eritrea

 

Seaplane tender Giuseppe Miraglia

Dates of service: construction started 1921, launched 1923, first commissioned 1927, uncommissioned 1950.
Shipyards: Arsenale di La Spezia
Dimensions: Length 121.2 m Width 15.0 m Draught 5.3 m
Displacement: Normal load 4960 ton, Full load 5913 ton
Speed max.: 21 knots
HP: 12000
Armament: 4 - 102/35, machine guns, 20 aircraft
Crew: 196

History: this unit was built for the increasing number of seaplanes aboard battleships and cruisers. So its duty was to be a mobile support for seaplanes and to transport seaplanes squadrons to the fleet. Its construction started in Arsenale di La Spezia the 5 March 1921 and launched the 20 December 1923; It had to be a steamship for Italian Railroads management, and its name would have been Città di Messina; but it was incorporated in Regia Marina, with transformation works started the 24 January 1925. It was equipped as a floating base for seaplanes servicing and repairing; It could transport up to 20 aircraft and it was equipped with two launch-catapults and a "Hein sheet " for the recovery of seaplanes. During post-war period it was used to repatriate Italian p.o.w., then it was used in a lot of local tasks; it was uncommissioned the 15 July 1950.

 

Carrier Aquila

Dates of service: transformation started 1941/43, uncommissioned 1947.
Shipyards: Ansaldo - Genova
Dimensions: Length 232.5 m Width 30 m Draught 7.3 m
Displacement: Normal load 23500 ton, Full load 27800 ton
Speed max.: 30 knots
HP: 151000
Autonomy: 5500 miles at 18 knots
Armor: horizontal 70 - 80 mm
Armament: 8 - 135/45 mm, 12 - 65/64 mm, 132 - 20/65 mm, 51 aircraft (fighters)
Crew: 1420

History: in 1941 it was taken the decision to build a fleet carrier; it was impossible to build one from scratch so it was decided to transform a liner: it was chosen the ocean liner Roma, of which remained only the hull, for the rest of the new carrier had to be built from scratch. When there was the armistice, the ship was practically finished and ready for trials; it was sabotaged and abandoned in Genova the 8 September 1943, and then it was newly damaged. In 1949 was towed to La Spezia, to wait for a decision about its destiny. It was demolished in 1952.


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