Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters, to Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels
SENT: July 7, 1917. TO: Secretary of the Navy.
Via Naval Attache, Washington.
Number eightyfour Replying your number thirty one all assistance which Bureau of Ordnance can render in manufacture of efficient type of mines and depth charges will be invaluable (stop) British output at present in excess of available ships to handle but numbers ships being increased (stop) Can we furnish minelayers as well as mines (stop) Admiralty experience now indicates necessity for abandoning entirely the Elia lever type in favour of the German Horn type with horns on bottom as well as top (stop) Also necessity for increased buoyancy to oppose tides (stop) Latest type will have five hundred pound buoyancy and thirteen hundred pound anchors. For mining against submarines they are now using fixed instead of automatic depth anchors as one floating mine or mines near surface discloses an entire field (stop) Many designs of mines effective against submarines but ineffective against surface craft have been <c>onsidered but no satisfactory type developed to date. Admiralty would appreciate information if such a mine has been developed (stop) Drawings of latest British mine of horn type forwarded twenty-eighth June (stop) Nets moorings and wire gear generally are available to the extent to which they can be used and it is urgently necessary to reduce demands on shipping (stop) Admiralty greatly appreciates Department’s offer. Brazil is asking England for nets. Can we meet her demands (stop) Delay in answering this cable due to impossibility of keeping up work here with present staff.
Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B. Identification number in top right-hand corenr: “31-4-1.” And in a column in the same location: 1/2/A/J.”