Commander Bowman H. McCalla to Rear Admiral William T. Sampson, Commander, North Atlantic Fleet
U. S. S. Marblehead, 3rd. Rate,
June 21st., 1898.
S i r :
1. I have the honor to inform you that the Marblehead and Dolphin early this morning took position to protect the steam launches and whale boats from the Marblehead and Dolphin, while they were used to sweep for mines in the channel between Cay de Ho[s]pital and Hicacal Point. Lieutenant Boughter was in charge of the force, with Ensign Gherardi in charge of the steam launch of the Marblehead; Ensigns Cole and Stirling were in charge of the boats from the Dolphin.1
They succeeded in raising seven mines of the same character as the two which were reported upon in my No. 91.2
Of the seven mines recovered today one had three of the arms pushed in. This with the other six were apparently laid into lines across the South end of the channel between Hicacal Point and Cay de Ho[s]pital.
It seems quite clear that the Texas, Marblehead and Suwanee passed through this mine field both in going up to attack the fort and returning on the 15th. instant.3
This sweeping will continue tomorrow morning.
I beg to recommend to your favorable consideration the above named Officers who performed their dangerous work with skill and success.
Commander, U.S. Navy,
Source Note: TLS, DNA, RG 313, Entry 48. Addressed below close: “The Commander-in-Chief.” Document reference: “No. 105.” At top left corner stamped: “RECEIVED/FLAG-SHIP N.A. STATION,/JUN 21 1898.”
Footnote 1: Lieutenant Francis Boughter; En. Walter R. Gherardi; En. William C. Cole; and En. Yates Stirling, Jr.
Footnote 2: See: McCalla to Sampson, 16 June 1898.
Footnote 3: The word “instant,” abbreviated as “inst.,” refers to a date in the same month that the letter is written.