Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters, to Admiral William S. Benson, Chief of Naval Operations, First Message of the Day

Chronological Copy.

                   Cablegram Sent Dec. 20, 1917.          FRA

To        Opnav, Washington                 Ser. No. 2270

Prep. by BAL1

18 ADR            

VERY SECRET

2270. Last 4 convoys have been very late jeopardizing chances of following convoy being met as same group of destroyers is used for all troop convoys. Recommend sailing orders be modified to provide for convoy arriving at rendezvous 40 to 60 hours in advance of date set convoy then to reverse course for a sufficient time to ensure being at rendezvous punctually. This procedure is used by all other convoys and I foresee danger if convoys are not operated so as to arrive at rendezvous on schedule. If due to casualties or some unforeseen emergency a group is late wireless touch should be made with Valentia or destroyer escort as early as practicable announcing number of hours group is late. 05020.

SIMS.

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

Footnote 1: Cmdr. Byron A. Long, one of Sims’ aides, in charge of convoying operations.

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