Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Bureau of Navigation to Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters

Chronological Copy.                         File No. <21-70-2>

              Cablegram Received <August 7, 1918.> EWC

Origin Opnav, Washington (Bunav).            Ser. No. 9605

       S-1 10 Aug.

       33 ADR.

Simsadus.

9605. Your 24601 Bureau realizes and fully appreciates splendid cooperation of Destroyer Force in furnishing Naval Reserve crews and regret misunderstanding in regard to nucleus crew for vessel of Eagle Class.2 Your 8044 stated QUOTE Am able to furnish the following

     3 seamen

     1 electrician

     2 machinist mates 2nd class or engine men

     1 Chief Water Tender or Water Tender

     2 firemen and recommend it be permitted to do so

UNQUOTE This recommendation was approved by the Bureau and it was assumed that this recommendation was taken into consideration when you made plans for furnishing nucleus crew at average rate of 14 per month. Destroyer program somewhat behind estimate upon which average of 14 nucleus crews per month was based. Satisfactory to Bureau if necessary count on receiving only 73 nucleus crews for Destroyers instead of 88 originally requested. Eagle Class also behind schedule. Estimate not more than 15 vessels will be delivered this year making necessary only 5 additional crews for Eagle Class.3 14307 9605.

Benson.       

930 AM Aug 9 1918.           

Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG45, Entry 517B. The handwritten date is confirmed by the time/date stamp at the end of the document.

Footnote 1: See: Sims to Bunav, 6 August 1918.

Footnote 2: Eagle boats were steel patrol boats designed by Henry Ford as an alternative to destroyers for antisubmarine warfare. Although smaller than destroyers, they were larger and had a greater operational capability than the 110-foot wooden submarine chasers. Frank A. Cianflone, “The Eagle Boats of World War I,” United States Naval Institute Proceedings, vol. 99 (June, 1973), 76-8.

Footnote 3: Only seven Eagle boats were completed by the Armistice. Construction continued after the war, and ultimately 60 were completed. Ibid.

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