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 Secretary of the Admiralty Sir Oswyn A. R. Murray

U.S. NAVAL FORCES OPERATING IN EUROPEAN WATERS

U.S.S. MELVILLE, FLAGSHIP.

TELEPHONE, VICTORIA 9110                30, GROSVENOR GARDENS,

CABLE ADDRESS, “SIMSADUS”                   LONDON, S.W. 1.

REFERENCE No. 0.4.16826                        8th May, 1918.

From:     Force Commander.

To:       The Secretary to the Admiralty.

Subject:  Duty of Submarine Chasers ordered to Portsmouth, England.

     1.   On the 4th instant, six U.S. Submarine Chasers manned by U.S. Naval personnel arrived at Brest en route for duty in British Waters.

     2.   These chasers have been ordered to proceed to Portsmouth as soon as practicable.

     3.   As the U.S.S. AYLWIN before leaving the United States Waters was employed on experimental duty with the same type of chasers, and in order to give the American listening devices with which these vessels are equipped a thorough test, it is desired that they be operated as a hunting unit under the direction of the Commanding Officer of the AYLWIN.1

     4.   The Commanding Officer of the AYLWIN2 has been directed to take charge of these vessels upon their arrival and prepare them for service as a hunting unit as soon as possible.

     5.   The U.S. Navy Department has expressed a desire that if practicable these vessels be used exclusively as a hunting group with a view of thoroughly testing out the devices which they carry and gaining experience which will assist in preparing other vessels of the type for similar service.

Wm S Sims                   

Source Note: LTS, UK-KeNA, Adm. 137/1622.

Footnote 1: For more on the arrival of the submarine chasers, see: Sims to William S. Benson, 17 and 19 May 1918.

Footnote 2: Lt. Cmdr. David M. LeBreton. For more on the experiments with anti-submarine tactics conducted with Aylwin, see: War Diary, Aylwin, 4 and 5 February 1918.

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