Secretary of the Navy John D. Long to Rear Admiral William T. Sampson, Commander, North Atlantic Squadron
Washington, April 26, 1898.
The orders under which you are acting do not prevent the use of some of your vessels in scouring coast of Cuba north and south, and capturing or destroying such Spanish vessels of war as may be in those waters.1 It would be within your discretion to send monitors with these vessels if you thought proper.
While the Department does not wish a bombardment of forts protected by heavy cannon, it is within your discretion to destroy light batteries which may protect vessels you desire to attack, if you can do so without exposure to heavy guns.
Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 80, Entry 194, vol. 1, p. 17. Addressed before opening: “Sampson, Key West.”
Footnote 1: For Secretary Long’s original orders for Sampson, see: Long to Sampson, 6 April 1898.