Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Commodore George Dewey, Commander, Asiatic Station, to Secretary of the Navy John D. Long

HongKong, April 6, 1898.

Secretary of the Navy, Washington, D.C.:

     I have purchased Nanshan and I have engaged her crew. Will detail an officer for command. I have ordered three officers, 50 men from Monocacy to fill vacancies here. I hope to get another steamer.1 * * * The receipt of telegram April 6 acknowledged, to expedite delivery.2

Dewey.

Source Note Print: Report of the Bureau of Navigation, 1898, p. 66.

Footnote 1: Dewey purchased the Nanshan and the coal it carried in compliance with a 4 April 1898, order from Secretary Long. Long then ordered Dewey to purchase a second vessel and to crew and arm in anticipation of the coming conflict with Spain. Dewey chose to take 3 officers and 50 men from the gun-boat Monocacy, because the Civil War era steamer was believed to be ill-suited for combat in the Philippines. Furthermore, Dewey was ordered by Acting Secretary of the Navy Theodore Roosevelt to leave the Monocacy in coastal China in the event of any sortie to the Philippines. See: Roosevelt to Dewey, 26 February 1898; and Long to Dewey, 4 April 1898.  

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