Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Secretary of the Navy John D. Long to Rear Admiral, Montgomery Sicard, Commander, North Atlantic Station

Copy of telegram received March 26th, 1898.

Dated Washington, D.C., March 26th.

To Sicard,    Key West, Fla.

          You are hereby relieved from command North Atlantic Squadron. Turn over command to Captain W.T. Sampson.1    You are granted sick leave by mail.2

Long.        

ENDORSEMENT.

U.S. Flagship New York, 1st Rate,

Key West, Florida,

March 26th, 1898.      

Received March 26th, 1898, at 10.45 A.M.

Command transferred 1.00 P.M.

                        M. Sicard,

                             Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy.

Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 313, Entry 47.

Footnote 1: Capt. William T. Sampson.

Footnote 2: Secretary Long learned of Sicard’s ill health in late March and ordered him to be assessed by a Medical Board on 23 March, The board condemned Sicard was too sick to command, but Sicard asked for reassignment. Sicard returned to duty on 19 April, and Long noted in his diary that:

Admiral Sicard returns today, and I order him to duty on the War Board. This is rather a sad case. He was in command of the fighting fleet, closing his naval service with what seemed to be an opportunity for the highest distinction in command. His health broke down, and I was compelled to retire him, after medical survey. He has been very manly about it and recognizes the propriety of my action, the evidence of which I see at once in the appearance of broken health which he manifests. MHi, Journal of John D. Long, vol. 78.

Sicard was eventually named President of the Naval War Board.  Long to Sicard, 22 March 1898, DNA, RG313, Entry 47, Box 1; Sicard to Long, 23 March 1898, Ibid.; and Trask, War With Spain, 153.

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