Douglas V. Duff

Douglas Valder Duff (1901–1978) was born in Rosario de Santa Fe in the Argentine in 1901. He was the eldest son of the British Consul and his godfather was Roger Casement who later became notorious by being hung for treason in the First World War. When the family returned to England he went to school at the Convent of the Visitation in Bridport, Dorset.

He entered the famous training ship HMS Conway in 1914, then at the age of 15 in the year 1916 he joined the Merchant Navy as a cadet. He joined Thracia trading between Liverpool and the Mediterranean which was torpedoed in the Bay of Biscay in 1917. Duff was the sole survivor (an event that made him vow to dedicate his life to go if he was saved) and after recovering at the family home in Ireland he went back to sea as a midshipman and, in an encounter with German U boats, had his leg broken. In June 1918, still only 17, he was again torpedoed. Next he was sent to the Black Sea and was involved in the rescue of many fugitives from the Bolshevists.

After the war he entered the noviciate of a teaching order of monks at Deeping St James in Lincolnshire. However, after 22 months he left, as he discovered that he had no vocation for that kind of life. He then joined the Royal Irish Constabulary until it was disbanded in 1922 when he joined the Palestine Police rising to command of the police in Jerusalem. He expected to get a post in the Jamaican Police but he had contracted malaria and was not fit for that sort of tropical duty so he returned to England, setting up home in Dorset where he took up writing and journalism.

During the Second World War he served in the RNVR at first in command of Grey Mist as part of the Dover Patrol. Then he was then appointed to the Staff of Admiral Andrew Cunningham, Commander in Chief of the Mediterranean Fleet. He carried out various duties, serving as Naval Officer in charge at Derna, and then as officer in command of the Western Desert Schooner Flotilla running sailing schooners which were breaking the blockade of Tobruk. Next he was put in command of HMS Stag whose duties included netting the Suez Canal. In 1943 he was transferred home and appointed Staff Officer Operations in Falmouth and from there he went to the Irregular Warfare Department of the Admiralty stationed at Teignmouth. He was demobilised in November 1945.

His continued writing, broadcasting and television work until his death completing about 100 books in his lifetime as well as 2 autobiographies ' May the Winds Blow' and 'Bailing with a Teaspoon'. As well as his own name he has books that appear under several pseudonyms, Douglas StanhopeLeslie SavagePeter Wickloe and Alan Paxton. His books are written for Young Adults.

AOS Other Nautical Fiction

Series: n/a
Year  Book  Comment
  The Cannons Roar Adventure story involving Algerian pirates
  Powder and Shot (No information available)
  Spunyarn More True Tales of Heroism and Villainy at Sea
  Yarns of a Shellback Strange, True Tales of the Sea
  More Yarns of a Shellback A collection of short storias

Modern Era Naval Fiction

Series: n/a
Year  Book  Comment
  Sea Whelps Two midshipmen serve in the 1930's Royal Navy
WWII A Little Ship The story of an adapted caique under the command of a Midshipman
  Looking for Trouble (No information available)
WWII Danger Chasers Two young RNVR officers are detailed for service in the Aegean
1938 Islands of Jeopardy A young English naval cadet is pitched against the Japanese
WWII The Lost Admiral Admiral Heathers is responsible for the safe keeping of an ancient jewelled relic.
  Heroes of the Sea A book of short stories
Series: Adam MacAdam
Year  Book  Comment
  Adam MacAdam, Naval Cadet Cadet Adam MacAdam is accused of theft
  Sea-Serpent Island Adam is a castaway upon a Pacific Island
  Ocean Haul Adam is sent to recover a sea-going tug called the Ariadne
  The San Matteo Adam is selected to command a replica galleon
  Sea-Bed Treasure Adam learns there may be a chance that his uncle is still alive
  Black Ivory Adam MacAdam who has been given orders by the United Nations
  The Pale Grey Men Adam is sent on a mission to the state of Jebel Azrakh
  At Close Grips Missiles are bombarding the home of Sir Roger Carnifex
  Undersea Oiltanker Adam is placed in charge of a large new oiltanker
  Crusader's Gold Adam volunteers to sail Commander Cheviot's yacht to the Mediterranean
  The Stolen Aircraft Carrier Adam is in command of an old aircraft carrier on its way to the breakers' yard
  The King's Rescue Jebelsamra, a small Arab kingdom which has just lost its king to a rebel army

Modern Era Other Nautical Fiction

Series: Berenger
Year  Book  Comment
  Bill Berenger's First Case When the second and third officers are arrested for Beresford investigates
  Berenger to the Rescue Berenger investigate the kidnap of the Chairman's son
  Bill Berenger wins Command On board the Messack Mote a murder has taken place
  Berenger's Toughest Case Berenger must ensure that Melplash Mote gets safely to port
Series: n/a
Year  Book  Comment
  The Treasure of the Antarctic (No information available)
  Peter Darington –Seaman Detective Murder mystery on a long voyage
  Sea Wren's Maiden Voyage (No information available)
  East of Suez Samways, a ships apprentice, stumbles across a man who had been attacked
  Ready, Aye Ready A Sea Cadet stumbles on a dangerous mystery at sea
  Foreign Legion Sailor A Midshipman dismissed from the Service joins the Foreign Legion
  Sea Pie Stories of the Sea
  Port of Missing Ships Where was the ship? A problem to be solved
  Checkmate (No information available)
  Pirates aboard! The officers and crew of the Mordred are in a desperate situation

Modern Era Other Non Fiction

Series: n/a
Year  Book  Comment
  The Story of the Merchant Navy Two Thousand Years of Seafaring
  Ships of the World Covers seamanship and ships through the ages

Written as Douglas Stanhope

AOS Other Nautical Fiction

Series: Sea Urchin's
Year  Book  Comment
  Sea Urchin's First Charter Sea Urchin is a special vessel taking on assignments that no one else can manage
  Sea Urchin's Second Charter Sea Urchin is a special vessel taking on assignments that no one else can manage
  Sea Urchin's Third Charter Sea Urchin is a special vessel taking on assignments that no one else can manage
  Sea Urchin's Last Charter Sea Urchin is a special vessel taking on assignments that no one else can manage

Written as Leslie Savage

ME Other Nautical Fiction

Series: n/a
Year  Book  Comment
  When the Sea Boiled (No information available)
  Cornish Contraband (No information available)

Written as Peter Wickloe

AOS Other Nautical Fiction

Series: n/a
Year  Book  Comment
  Casper Clinton: China Coaster An officer is killed and Clinton is the only person capable of navigating
  The Yellow Ship John Frear is a crew member of his fathers Barque Maid of Avon
  To the Coasts of Barbary A novel set in the 17th century
  South Seas of Peril (No information available)
  Bullen of the 'Brigadier' (No information available)

Written as Alan Paxton

AOS Other Nautical Fiction

Series: n/a
Year  Book  Comment
  The Long Haul A family voyage to San Ignacio in the ketch Mantlet.

© 2008-2024 David Hayes (Astrodene)