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Commodore George Dewey, Commander, Asiatic Station, to George Goodwin Dewey


HongKong China.

18 Feby. /98

My dear Son:

          We arrived here yesterday morning five and a half days from Yokohoma. The ship steams three hundred miles a day on half power and with a very moderate expenditure of coal. I have been very busy ever since our arrival in making [and] receiving calls Ɇc Ɇc1

          The Raleigh arrived about noon to day and I have just seen Billy Winder.2 He looks first rate and none the worse for two months hard work at sea. Before leaving Yokohama I went to Tokyo (the Capitol) and had an audience with the Emperor and after with the Empress-3

          Sometime I will tell you all about it- Very interesting. You should read “Glimpse of Unfamiliar Japan” by Lefcardio Hearn-4 I am rereading it now. I send check for $250. What you do not spend put in the Savings bank. We were terribly shocked this morning to hear of the destruction of the “Maine“ at Havana. I feared at first that she had been destroyed by the Spanish, which of course meant war, and I was getting ready for it when a later dispatch said it was an accident.5

Your affectionate father

George Dewey.

Source Note: ALS, DN-HC, PGGD, Box 1. Included with this document are a transcript and photocopy of the original envelope.

Footnote 1: Shorthand for “Etc. Etc.”    

Footnote 2: Emperor Mutsuhito and his wife Masako Ichijo. Mutsuhito was later given the title Meiji the Great.

Footnote 3: Lt. William Winder of the protected cruiser Raleigh.

Footnote 4: LafcadioHearn, Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan (1894).

Footnote 5: Secretary of the Navy John D. Long to Dewey, DNA, AFNRC, M625, roll 362.

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