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Secretary of the Navy John D. Long to Commodore John C. Watson, Commander, Eastern Squadron


Washington, July 14, 1898.  

     Colwell1 reports Suez Canal company guarantees the passage through of vessels drawing 25 feet, 7 inches. The British Battleship “Victorious” lately passed through and as lightened to the draft. She originally drew 27 feet, 6 inches. There is 27 feet, 9inches in the channel of the canal.2


Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 80, Entry 194, vol. 1, p. 278. Addressed before opening: “Watson,/Playa del Este, Cuba.”

Footnote 1: United States Naval Attaché in London Lt. John C. Colwell.

Footnote 2: There was concern that the Eastern Squadron would be unable to pass through the Suez Canal. See: RAdm. William T. Sampson to Long, 3 August 1898.

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