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France's Jeanne d'Arc class Cruisers

Photos

Jeanne d'Arc in Vancouver in January 1935:
Jeanne d'Arc in Vancouver in January 1935
City of Vancouver Archives, CVA 99-2851

Design

The 1926 / 1927 / 1929 Program called for a cruiser that would just be used for training. The order was placed on October 8, 1928.

The Jeanne d'Arc class would sacrifice some of the usual warship features to allow for more crew space. There were only two torpedo tubes, only two shafts with the reduced number of boilers and turbines.

Aircraft

There was no catapult to launch the aircraft. There were two Loire-Nieuport 130 flying boats that had to be lowered by cranes into the water.

Ships

Jeanne d'Arc

  • Manufacturer: A & C de St. Nazaire, A C de St-Nazaire-Penhoët, St. Nazaire
  • 1928, August 31, 1928: Laid down.
  • February 14, 1930: Launched.
  • 1931, September 1931, September 14, 1931: Completed.
  • 1931 - 1932: Sailed to Brazil, Argentina, Cape Horn, Panama Canal, West Indies, and Morocco.
  • 1933: World cruise.
  • 1937 - 1938: World cruise.
  • 1939: Hunted German blockade runners.
  • May 1940: With Emile Bertin moved 200 tons of gold reserves to Halifax, Nova Scotia.
  • June 1940: In Martinique.
  • June 3, 1943: Joined Allies.
  • September 9, 1943: Arrived in Casablanca for refit.
  • September 17 - 19, 1943: Main mast, aircraft equipment, torpedo tubes, and all of the original light anti-aircraft guns removed. Six 40 mm and twenty 20 mm guns added. US repair ship Vulcan did work.
  • January 20, 1944: Arrived in Casablanca for refit.
  • May 1944: Refit finished.
  • October 1944 - March 15, 1945: Member of Flank Force and bombarded remaining German positions along Ligurian coast.

 

Usage

Initially took long training cruises but once World War II started was used to hunt German merchant ships and escort convoys.

Specifications

  Jeanne d'Arc class
Crew 505, 506, 156 midshipmen, 20 instructors
Crew - War 643, 648
Displacement 6,496 tons
Displacement - Loaded 8,950 tons, 9,200 tons
Physical Characteristics  
Length 557' 9"
170 m
Length - Water Line  
Length - Between Perpendiculars 525'
160 m
Beam 57' 6", 58'
17.7 m
Draft / Height 20' 8", 21'
6.4 m
Draft / Height - Maximum  
Performance  
Speed 25 knots
Range  
Range at 11 knots 5,200 nautical miles
Range at 21 knots 3,200 nautical miles
Armament 6.1" twin turrets: 4
6.1" L/55 M1921 twin turrets: 4
Anti-Aircraft 3", 7.5 cm: 4
3" L/60: 4
40 mm: 6
37 mm twin mounts: 2
20 mm: 20
13.2 mm: 12
13.2 mm triple mounts: 4
Torpedo Tubes 21.7": 2
Aircraft 2
Armor  
Belt - Main  
Control Tower 1"
3 cm
Deck - Main  
Magazine 0.75"
2 cm
Turrets  
Engines  
Boilers Penhoët: 4
Shafts 2
Turbines Parsons geared
Parsons SR geared
HP 32,500
Oil 1,400 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
  3. Janes' Fighting Ships of World War II, 1989
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site