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

Chronological Copy.                          File No.

Cablegram Received    January <27, 1918.> [unreadable]

Origin    Opnav Washington                    Ser. No. 2490.

     C-1   [unreadable] 38



2490. Urgency of dispatching abroad large amount needed supplies for Army is such as to justify operation of cargo vessels in convoys without armament until armament can be supplied.1 Also where Navy crews not immediately available vessels will operate with present crews with such changes as necessary.2 Reasonable proportion of convoys should be always armed. Keep foregoing in view of in assigning escort for home voyage. 04027.


Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B. There is a stamp at the top of the cable in a very large font: “Commander Waters” This stamp was added later and obscures material in this copy.

Footnote 1: That is, without armed guards.

Footnote 2: After the creation of the Naval Overseas Transport Command, ships going into the war zone were supposed to be manned by Navy personnel. Clephane, Naval Overseas Transportation Service: xviii-xix.

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