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France's Emile Bertin class Cruisers

Photos

Emile Bertin from a US Navy publication:
Emile Bertin  from a US Navy publication
US Navy

Design

On January 12, 1930, under the 1930 Program, the Emile Bertin was authorized for construction as a minelayer and to be an improved Pluton class. The order was placed on September 11, 1931. This was the first French cruiser to have triple gun turrets.

During trials the Emile Bertin did attain a speed of 39.66 knots.

Aircraft

There was a single catapult for the two aircraft.

Armament

  Shell Weight Rate of Fire Range Elevation
6", 15.24 cm M1930
6" L/50 M1930
119 lb
54.17 kg, 54.3 kg
  28,952 yards
21,500 m, 26,474 m
45°

 

Ships

Emile Bertin

  • Manufacturer: A & C de St. Nazaire-Penhoët, A C de St. Nazaire-Penhoët
  • August 1931, August 18, 1931: Laid down.
  • May 9, 1933: Launched.
  • 1934, January 26, 1935: Completed. Became flagship of Light Division, Atlantic Squadron.
  • Early 1939: In Toulon.
  • September 1939: Bizerte.
  • September 23, 1939: Arrived in Beirut and loaded 57 tons of Poland's gold reserves.
  • September 27, 1939: Arrived in Toulon.
  • September 1939 - January 1940: Refit.
  • January 1940: Searched for German ships around Canary Islands.
  • Middle February 1940: Dockyard work in Brest.
  • April 1940: Flagship of Group Z, commanded by Admiral Derrien. This group supported Allied invasion of Norway.
  • April 6, 1940: Sailed to Scapa Flow.
  • April 19, 1940: Damaged by bombs from Ju. 88s of II.KG 30.
  • April - May 21, 1940: In Brest for repairs.
  • May 21 - June 1, 1940: Sailed to Halifax carrying gold from Bank of France.
  • June 11, 1940: Sailed to Halifax carrying 254 tons of gold. Before unloaded armistice signed and ordered to Fort de France.
  • June 1940: Gold unloaded in Fort de France and prepared for expected attack by Royal Navy that was called off due to appeal from President Roosevelt.
  • May 16, 1942: Vichy government ordered her immobilized due to pressure from United States.
  • August - December 1943: Refit in Philadelphia. Two 90 mm twin mounts, four 40 mm quad mounts, and twenty 20 mm guns added. Torpedo tubes, aircraft equipment, and French anti-aircraft guns were removed.
  • December 21, 1943: Arrived in Fort de France.
  • December 28, 1943: Sailed to Dakar.
  • February 1944: Operated in Mediterranean.
  • August 1944: Supported Operation Dragoon, invasion of southern France.
  • October 1944: Provided support along French Riviera.
  • December 1944: Support missions off Lebanon.
  • December 30, 1944 - October 1945: Refit at Toulon.

 

Usage

Before World War II the Emile Bertin was the flagship for a squadron of Malin and Maillé Brézé class destroyers.

Specifications

  Emile Bertin class
Crew 567, 711
Crew - War 711
Displacement 5,886 tons
Displacement - Loaded 8,480 tons
Physical Characteristics  
Length 580' 8", 580' 9"
177 m
Length - Water Line  
Length - Between Perpendiculars 547' 11", 548'
167 m
Beam 52' 6"
16 m
Draft / Height 21' 8", 21' 9"
6.6 m
Draft / Height - Maximum  
Performance  
Speed 34 knots
Range  
Range at 15 knots 3,600 nautical miles
Range at 33 knots 1,100 nautical miles
Armament 6", 15.24 cm M1930 triple turrets: 3
6" L/50 M1930 triple turrets: 3
Anti-Aircraft 3.5": 2
3.5" L/50: 2
3.5" twin mount: 1
3.5" L/50 twin mount: 1
37 mm twin mounts: 4
13.2 mm machine gun twin mounts: 4
Mines 200
Torpedo Tubes 21.7": 3 tubes each on 2 mounts
Aircraft 2
Armor  
Belt - Main  
Control Tower 1"
2 cm
Deck - Main 1"
2.5 cm
Magazine 1"
3 cm
Turrets  
Engines  
Boilers Penhoët: 6
Shafts  
Turbines Parsons geared
Parsons SR geared
HP 102,000
Oil 1,360 tons

Sources:

  1. Cruisers of World War Two An International Encyclopedia, M. J. Whitley, 1995
  2. Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922-1946, Robert Gardiner, 1987
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site