Ships’ histories

Profiles of the Royal Canadian Navy’s historical ships, including histories, photos, dimensions, capabilities and battle honours. All of these ships’ names start with HMCS: His/Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship.

These short histories cover the service of nearly every named unit of the Royal Canadian Navy since 1910. This means all commissioned His/Her Majesty’s Canadian Ships, including:

  • fleet units
  • shore-based units such as naval reserve divisions

It also includes patrol craft, certain auxiliary vessels and naval radio stations. Many are still in service. Others have been “paid off”, meaning that they have been removed from military service at the end of their commission.

We drew the content mainly from The Ships of Canada’s Naval Forces, 1910-2002 1, with the publisher's permission. We also used these sources:

  • Ships of Canada’s Marine Services 2
  • Canadian Warship Names 3


1 Ken Macpherson & John Barrie, The Ships of Canada’s Naval Forces, 1910-2002, 3rd ed. (St. Catharines, ON.: Vanwell Publishing) 2002.

2 Charles M. Maginley & Bernard Collins, Ships of Canada’s Marine Services (St. Catharines, ON.: Vanwell Publishing) 2001.

3 David J. Freeman, Canadian Warship Names (St. Catharines, ON.: Vanwell Publishing) 2000.

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