Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Captain William B. Fletcher, Commander, Special Patrol Squadrons, Operation Order Number Six

SECRET

UNITED STATES PATROL SQ[U]ADRONS,

Flag Office.

   Brest, France,  

GROUP OPERATION ORDER NO. 6.                    1 August.1917.

References:    (a)  Group Operations Order No. 3.

(b)  Patrol Squadron Program No. 2.

(c)  Convoy service, Methods of Escort.1

FORCE:  GROUP A. U. S. S. CHRISTABEL, U. S. S. SULTANA.

        GROUP B, U. S. S. VEDETTE, U. S. S. HARVARD.

        1.  As communicated from day to day.

        2.  Reference (a) modified so that this Force will assist in the escort from Berthaume of the convoy to and from England, then of the convoy to and from Quiberon.2 Control of convoy to be as before.3

        3.  Group B, - Proceed in company to Bertehaume in time to arrive one hour before sailing of the Wolf Rock convoy.

            Group A, - Same as Group B.

         x.   Vessels depart and arrive at base on date specified. 

Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 125, Entry 30, Box 246. This document was an exhibit in the court of inquiry for Fletcher. At the top is the notation “EXHIBIT “T T”.” At the bottom of this exhibit is a notation: “A true copy/KMBennett.” Capt. Kenneth M. Bennett was the Judge Advocate in the court of inquiry. There is also a routing list after the text: “Copies to/Commanding Officers/VEDETTE,HARVARD,CHRISTABEL,SULTANA/To C. D. P. B. [Chief of the Division of Patrol of Bretagne], Brest./[French] Ministry of Marine/Vice Admiral [William S.] Sims (2)/Navy Department Operations./File.” Fletcher issued a series of operation orders during the late summer and autumn of 1917.

Footnote 1: Copies of each of the referenced documents can be found in ibid.

Footnote 2: In the operation order dated 27 July, the patrols were to escort convoys from Brest to Quiberon and then return. Ibid.

Footnote 3: That is, “the direction and control of the convoy will rest with the Commander of the French escort.” Ibid.

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