Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Third Assistant Secretary of State Thomas W. Cridler to Secretary of the Navy John D. Long

 

 

Department of State,

Washington.

 

May 20, 1898.

 

 

Sir:-

     I have the honor, by direction of the Secretary of State,1 to communicate to you herewith copy of a deciphered telegram received from Mr. Louis A. Dent, Consul of the United States at Kingston, Jamaica, reading as follows:

          “Consulate of the United States,

              “Kingston, May 19, 1898.

                   ( Received May 19,- 8.23 p.m.)

 

“Secretary C R I D L E R,

     “Washington.

     Adula just returned from Santiago de Cuba. Captain reports

twelve thirty last night crossed course of seven war vessels,

some small, steering westward midway between Jamaica and Cuba.2

“It is arranged that Captains Boston Fruit Company fleet carry “form of a telegram provided by me to be filled at Turks Island

over my signature reporting movement of Spanish fleet if seen.3

 “DENT.”           

 

Respectfully yours,                  

Thos.W. Cridler4

Third Assistant Secretary.

Source Note: TD, DNA, AFNRC, M625, roll 230. Address open: “The Honorable/The Secretary of the Navy.” In top right-hand corner of Department of State stationery: “office of/THIRD ASSISTANT SECRETRY.” Underneath the date was handwritten: “May 19.”

Footnote 1: Secretary of State William R. Day.

Footnote 2: Adula was a blockade runner operating out of Jamaica but its captain also provided intelligence for American fleet commanders, see: Dent to John Moore, 10 July 1898; and Winfield S. Schley to John D. Long, 30 May 1898.

Footnote 3: The Spanish fleet referred to here was that under the command of RAdm. Pascual Cervera y Topete.

Footnote 4: Thomas W. Cridler was Third Assistant Secretary of State from 1897 to 1901.

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