About the Shipscribe site

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The Shipscribe site and domain are owned and operated by Stephen S. Roberts. Its initial purpose was to publish information on U.S. Navy auxiliary vessels collected by the author in the archives as a sequel to his book Register of Ships of the U.S. Navy, 1775-1990, which covered only combatant ships. Work began in June 2000. Construction of this site was interrupted by the death of the author's wife, Sue Goetz Ross, on 27 March 2002. The U.S. ship reference section and the French Navy section were added in mid-2004. Intensive work on the auxiliary vessels register resumed in late 2005 and concluded in 2013. The article by the late Norman L. McKellar was added in 2007 with the kind permission of Mrs. Hazel McKellar. The "Spring Styles" drawings were added on 26 April 2015 and the World War I temporary auxiliaries section was added in May 2015 following the deletion of the Online Library of Selected Images from the web site of the Naval History and Heritage Command.

You may contact the author of the site at this new email address (which works!):

Recent activity

October 2022: Made the site usable on mobile devices, in hopes of reaching more users. On a smartphone, Landscape mode works best. In Portrait, swipe tables R/L to scroll them.
August 2022: Changed the site email contact address. The old one was not forwarding reliably.
July 2021: Began building a 1946-1979 supplement to the auxiliary vessels portion of the site and added a link to it to the front page of the site.
July 2021: Added Cochrane collection and restructured portions of the site including the front page.
June 30, 2021: Completed book French Warships in the Age of Steam, 1859-1914. Published 16 November 2021.
April 2021: Links to the 1912 and 1914 Alaskan Radio Expeditions added to the top page of the site and three pages of photos added.
April 2021: Replaced the oldest and smallest photos in the original auxiliary vessels portion of this site with larger ones sized to fit in a modern browser on a 1920 x 1080 pixel desktop monitor. On a smaller screen or for a vertical photo, click on the displayed photo to enlarge it (with scroll bars), and click again to return to the original view. Smartphones are not affected.
March 2021: Added ship name index to the auxiliary vessels portion of this site.
2018-2021: Wrote book French Warships in the Age of Steam, 1859-1914.
2015-2017: With Rif Winfield wrote book French Warships in the Age of Sail, 1626-1786.
April 2015: Added U.S. Navy "Spring Styles" section.
2013-2015: With Rif Winfield wrote book French Warships in the Age of Sail, 1786-1861.
June-July 2013: Completed the auxiliary vessels portion of this site back to the construction of the Navy's first purpose-built auxiliary vessel, USS Relief, in 1835-1836.

For a log of the production history of the auxiliary vessels portion of this site
from June 2000 to July 2013 click here.

Ashley and Bradley

The author's two feline helpers:
Ashley, 13 June 1994 - 9 December 2006 (left)
Bradley, 14 May 1994 - 30 June 2008 (right)

Sue Goetz Ross and Ashley.

Sue Goetz Ross and Ashley.

Abigail and Schuyler

The author's new feline apprentices:
Abigail (left) and Schuyler (right)
Both born 8 May 2008 and in residence 2 August 2008.
You can see more feline pictures by clicking this link to "ships cats" on Flickr.

Schuyler (left) and Abigail, 2011.

Schuyler (left) and Abigail fully grown, in 2011.

This entire site, including all its pages, is copyright © Stephen S. Roberts 2001-2021 or later as indicated.