Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters, to the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations

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TRANSLATION    <January 16, 1918>

From: Vice Admiral Sims,

To:   Opnav

#4047 Your 1809.1 It has been agreed that there shall be no question of British and American mine layers2 being protected exclusively by destroyers of same nationality. Disposition of forces for protecting both shall be such as to give best protection mine layers while maintaining the availability of the protecting vessels for falling back on Grand Fleet3 in case of necessity. Probably about thirty two destroyers required but may have to substitute chasers for half the destroyers. 20316

SIMS 909 pm    1 16 18

Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B. Document reference: “IL 3981.” Document was transcribed by naval personnel with initials: “MDH.”

Footnote 2: The U.S. Navy was beginning to lay out the North Sea Mine Barrage, and the ships putting it down required protection. For the Barrage, see Still, Crisis at Sea: 427-443.

Footnote 3: The main British fleet stationed at Scapa Flow, Scotland.

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