Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Secretary of the Navy John D. Long to Rear Admiral William T. Sampson, Commander, North Atlantic Station

RECEIVED at 145 pm                         Apl 21 1898

Dated Washington DC 21

To Sampson    Keywest Fla

          you are assigned to Command of the men & forces on the north Atlantic station1 with the rank of a rear Admiral. Hoist the flag of a rear admiral immediately2

Long

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

Footnote 1: The North Atlantic Station consisted of the Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean, and Southern Coast of the United States. See, Report of the Chief of the Bureau of Navigation: 1898, 37-38. For the entire command structure of the North Atlantic Fleet, see: Commo. Arent S. Crowninshield to Chiefs of Navy Department Bureaus, 25 March 1898.

Footnote 2: Capt. William T. Sampson hoisted the flag as senior officer of the North Atlantic Fleet on 26 March, retaining his captain’s rank until 3 July, when he was promoted to commodore. DNA, RG 45, Entry 29. With the receipt of the above telegram Sampson became Acting Rear Admiral, exercising that rank until the end of the war. For the duration of the war he was addressed as Rear Admiral and signed his letters and cables as such. The editors have chosen to designate Sampson as Rear Admiral and not Acting Rear Admiral.

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