Around the end of the 19th century, the United States began to emerge as a global power. Policymakers believed that securing U.S. objectives during this period required a great navy. At the time, this meant building a large fleet of battleships. However, designing and constructing these ships was often a complicated and contentious process. In this presentation, Dr. Fahey will explore how naval officers, Congress, Navy boards, and professional forums innovated, debated, and finalized battleship design in the era of HMS Dreadnought.

About the Speaker:

John E. Fahey is a historian at the United States Naval History and Heritage Command. He has taught at the United States Military Academy at West Point, Georgia Military College, and George Mason University. He earned his MA in European history at George Mason University, and then went on to earn his PhD in history at Purdue University. His doctoral work focused on the Austro-Hungarian Empire. While at Purdue, John received a Fulbright grant to conduct research in southeastern Poland, and he deployed with the U.S. Army’s 3rd Infantry Division to Kandahar, Afghanistan, as an intelligence officer. He is the coauthor of “Habsburg Grand Strategy in the Napoleonic Era” in the Cambridge History of the Napoleonic Wars and the author of the forthcoming book, Przemyśl, Poland: A Multiethnic City During and After a Fortress, 1867-1939 publishing in February 2023 under Purdue University Press.

USS South Carolina (BB-25).   NHHC Photograph, NH 61225

USS South Carolina (BB-25).   NHHC Photograph, NH 61225