Skip to main content

Office of the Chief of Naval Operations to Certain Naval District Commandants and Other Officers


          <July 21, 1918> Receiving Data




Operator or Signalman


Date and Time



   PT           O


11:49 pm


VIA NAVY RADIO P.N.         System               Code or Cipher 

Address C-in-C1          LANDWIRE N.Y.          CUFAL    F

Following received from reliable authority quote Two converted mercantile type submarines2 will leave GERMANY middle of August for AMERICAN COAST period One of them will probably lay mines east of ATLANTIC CITY and CURRITUCK period The other off ST JOHNS NEWFOUNDLAND<,> HALIFAX NOVA SCOTIA period3 These submarines estimated to arrive at AMERICAN waters second week September unquote period It appears evident from information received that an active campaign will be made during the summer and early fall to mine the ATLANTIC COAST period period DISTRICTS will make every effort to counter these efforts by sweeping operations directed especially at the focus point of shipping and especially at entrance of principal ports- COMNAVDIS ONE TWO and THREE4 COMCRUSFOR5 COMNAVDIS FOUR FIVE AND SIX6 COMMAMROLDET7 COMNAVDIS SEVEN EIGHT AND FIFTEEN8 12010


Source Note: D, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B.

Footnote 1: Adm. Henry T. Mayo, Commander-in-Chief, Atlantic Fleet.

Footnote 2: The “reliable authority” was VAdm. William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters. Clark, When the U-Boats Came to America, 263. German “mercantile type submarines” were also known as Deutschland class submarines.

Footnote 3: Only one submarine, U-155 (the former Deutschland) left Germany for American waters in August. The next and last U-boat sent to American waters did not leave Germany until 5 September. Ibid., 263-64, 276.

Footnote 4: That is, Commandants of Naval Districts One, Two and Three: RAdm. Spencer D. Wood, Commo. James P. Parker, and RAdm. Nathanial R. Usher.

Footnote 5: That is, Commander, Cruiser Force,: RAdm. Albert T. Gleaves.

Footnote 6: That is, Commandants of Naval Districts Four, Five, and Six: Capt. George F. Cooper, RAdm. Augustus F. Fechteler, and RAdm. Frank E. Beatty.

Footnote 7: That is, Commander, American Patrol Detachment, RAdm. Edwin A. Anderson.

Footnote 8: That is, Commandants of Naval Districts Seven, Eight and Fifteen: Cmdr. Warren J. Terhune, Commo. Valentine S. Nelson, and RAdm. Marbury Johnston.