Captain Robley D. Evans to Rear Admiral William T. Sampson, Commander, North Atlantic Fleet
U. S. S. I O W A, 1st Rate.
Off Key West, Fla.,
May 20th, 1898.
S i r :-
I beg to submit the following statement:-
2. At 8:20 P. M., on the evening of the 17th instant, having cast off the tow of the AMPHITRITE, this vessel proceeded with all dispatch under natural draft to Key West, to take coal on board and to be ready for any immediate service that might be ordered.
2. The IOWA anchored off Key West at 6:30 P. M. on the evening of the 18th of May.
3. The Paymaster and other subordinate officers in the ship were immediately sent on shore to communicate with the Commandant and General Storekeeper, and copies of requisitions for provisions and stores urgently needed were furnished them before 9:00 P. M. of the same day.
4. Upon the arrival at Key West all preparations were made for taking coal immediately. Not a pound of coal was placed alongside of this vessel until 8:00 O’Clock of the following morning, the 19th instant.
5. The provisions ordered were not delivered until about 1:30 A. M., during the night, of the 20th.
6. It was urgently desired that 25 men of the Engineers Force and several men of the Seaman Branch should be furnished this ship during her stay at Key West. It is believed that these men arrived in Key West on board the FLORIDA by 6:00 P. M. on the 19th instant, and in spite of frequent appeals, this vessel was obliged to leave Key West at 11:40 A. M., of to-day, upon urgent service to meet the enemy, without having received the men. This to the great detriment to her efficiency.
Captain, U. S. Navy,
Source Note: TLS, DNA, RG 313, Entry 48. Addressed below close: “ To/THE COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF,/U.S.NAVAL FORCE,/N. A. STATION.” Docketed: “U. S. S. IOWA,/Off Key West/May 20th 98/Evans R.D./CAPTAIN U. S. NAVY,/COMMANDING./Reports arrival/at Key West, etc.”