Star Trek is as famous for its ships as it is for its memorable characters, great shows and films, futuristic thinking, trippy costumes and sci-fact devices. And that makes sense, as Starfleet has always realized that each vessel must stand alone against any enemy or attack and must, in a phrase, stand as a ship of the line. StarTrek.com each week from now until the end of the year is going to take a closer look at a Trek ship -- some as familiar to fans as Kirk and Spock, others a bit obscure. We start today with the greatest of them all, the U.S.S. Enterprise NCC-1701.
Constructed in San Francisco and widely considered to have taken her maiden voyage in 2245 under the command of Captain Robert April, the U.S.S. Enterprise (NCC-1701) proudly served Starfleet until her demise in 2285, when Kirk engaged the ship’s self-destruct sequence in order to save the day and keep her from the clutches of the Klingon Empire. The ship was a Federation Constitution-class heavy cruiser built to explore strange new worlds, to serve as home to 400-plus crew, and to withstand the stress of battle. And the Enterprise saw plenty of battle, taking on the Klingons, Romulans, Khan, Kruge and more, not to mention such on-ship threats as Tribbles, all just during Kirk's tenure in the captain's chair. She underwent at least two refits over the years, with one ending abruptly as the Enterprise warped into action to contend with the V'ger crisis.
The Enterprise was ultimately captained by Robert April, Christopher Pike, James T. Kirk, Willard Decker and Spock, with many others temporarily taking command at different times and for various reasons. Nearly 60 officers and crew died aboard the ship, including Scotty's young nephew, Peter Preston, and Spock, who made the ultimate sacrifice in order to restore power to the ship following Khan's attack. In the end, the Enterprise truly went where no one had gone before. She visited approximately 70 different worlds, with the crew encountering 60 some odd species and making first contact with 20-plus of those species.
The latest in the bestselling Ships of the Line calendar series is available now; visit www.Amazon.com to purchase the 2015 Ships of the Line calendar. And if you're an artist or designer, be sure to enter the Ships of the Line Design Contest, under way now, for a chance to have your art featured in the 2016 Ships of the Line calendar. Click HERE to enter.