Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Brigadier General Adolphus W. Greely to Secretary of the Navy John D. Long

War Department

SIGNAL OFFICE,

Washington,   June 15, 1898. 

Sir:-

     The following cipher dispatch, received by me early this morning, gives the following information:

“Blanco wires Linares (Commanding General) at Santiago that twenty-five thousand Americans had left for Guantanamo.1 Blanco received this information from Montreal [by] way of Bermudas.

“Pando,2 chief of operations, left Havana to-day for Santiago.

“Four shot from fleet exploded aboard Spanish gun-boat at Cienfuegos killing many.3

“Much suffering among poor classes. No grain of any kind to be had. On verge of starvation.

“Soldiers still have month’s supply of food left by Red Cross, but no bread in five days.

“One vessel arrived at Batabano with corn since blockade.”

Yours truly,

A.W. Greely

Brigadier General,

Chief Signal Officer.

Source Note: TLS, DNA, AFNRC, M625, roll 231. Addressed before saluatation: “To The Honorable/The Secretary of the Navy.” At the top of the letter is a stamp directing that all communications sent to “THIS OFFICE” should be addressed to “’CHIEF SIGNAL OFFICER,.’” The first three lines, with the exception of the date, are printed stationery heading.

Footnote 1: Captain-General of Cuba Ramón Blanco y Erenas; Lt. Gen. Arsenio Linares y Pombo, commander of the Spanish garrison at Santiago de Cuba; the U.S. Army’s force sent to capture Santiago de Cuba numbered 17,000 men.

Footnote 2: Gen. Luis Manuel de Pando y Sánchez was Blanco’s chief of staff. Those reinforcements did not leave Havana until 20 June and then did not arrive before the surrender of the garrison of Santiago de Cuba on 17 July. Squadron Operations, 106 and n.

Footnote 3: This report appears to be false.

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