Reports of Commanding Officers of U.S. Navy Ships on Most Desirable Coal
Reports of Commanding Officers Upon Most Desirable Coal.
In the month of August, 1898, the Bureau sent the following circular letter to the Commanders in Chief of the different squadrons on the Atlantic Coast:
Navy Department, Bureau of Equipment,
Washington, D. C., August 31, 1898.
Sir: 1. The Bureau requests that you will direct the commanding officers of each of the naval ships under your command to address an official letter to this Bureau, stating the trade name of the American coal considered the most desirable for use on board of their respective ships for steaming and other purposes, with reasons for the selection made, so far as possible.
2. No further report is desired from ships which have already made a similar one.
(Signed) R. B. Bradford,
Chief of Bureau.
One hundred and twenty-three (123) answers were received as follows:
One hundred and seventeen (117) preferred Pocahontas coal.
One (1) preferred anthracite on account of type of boilers (Almy water tube).
One (1) gave no trade name, preferring bituminous or semibituminous coal.
One (1) preferred Cumberland.
One (1) had only tried New River and Georges Creek, and preferred the former.
And the other two classed Pocahontas and New River as equal generally, stating however, that the former made less smoke and of a lighter color.
The principal reasons given for preferring Pocahontas coal were as follows:
1.It gives best results in speed per ton of coal consumed.
2.It contains the smallest percentage of ash.
3.Less smoke is given off in combustion.
4.It requires less working of fires to keep steam pressure uniform.
5.Better suited to forced draft.
6.Requires less sweeping of tubes.
7.Clinkers to less extent than some other coals.