Secretary of the Navy John D. Long to Commodore George C. Remey, Commandant, Key West Naval Base
Washington, D.C., May 30th, 1898.
An army about 25, 000 men are embarking at Tampa for Santiago via North Coast of Cuba and must be strongly convoyed from Tampa to Santiago1 and you will use the Indiana and all the other vessels you can possibly spare from the blockade. There will be 25 or 30 transports and must be carefully guarded against Spanish torpedo vessels. Send three or four cruisers to Tampa to convoy army from there. Let Indiana and other ships join transports near Tortugas or where you may direct. Report to the Department the names of ships composing the convoy with other particulars.2 The blockade will be provided for sufficiently during the movement with the monitors and some small vessels. The convoy must be as strong as you can make it, taking every vessel not needed absolutely for the blockade.
Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 313, Entry 51. Addressed before open: “Remey, Key West, Fla.” Before the opening, someone typed in a dotted line for the first line and a half of the message. The editors have not included it. Its significance, if any, is not known.
Footnote 1: The force that left Tampa numbered some 17,000 men. Cosmas, Army for Empire, 196.
Footnote 2: For the list of ships that were used for this convoy see: Henry C. Taylor to William T. Sampson, 18 June 1898.