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


CABLEGRAM SENT:  9 January 1918.  ROC.

TO: Opnav, Washington.                     SERIAL NO. 2781.



2781. Your 2010: My 22862 did not state reason for asking for TEXAS was to make a division of five ships, but stated that in order to insure four ships continuously in battle line a fifth ship was necessary. A real need does exist for one more battleship and this should be the TEXAS, in order that there may always be one ship and usually two with fourteen inch guns at our end of the battle line. Need for another division of battleships not sufficient at present to justify additional strain on supply lines. The Admiralty and Commander-in-Chief3 after thorough consideration of subject are now agreed that it is desirable that the present division remain with the Fleet and be not replaced by another division later as was proposed at one time. They believe, and I concur, that there would be a period of relative inefficiency each time a change was made and it is better that one division remain with such additions as may be found necessary, but without substitutions.4  00009.


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

Footnote 1: Capt. Nathan C. Twining, Sims’ Chief of Staff.

Footnote 2: These documents have not been found.

Footnote 3: Adm. Sir David Beatty, R.N., Commander-in-Chief, Grand Fleet.

Footnote 4: TEXAS sailed for Europe on 30 January and joined the other American ships making up the Sixth Battle Squadron of the British Grand Fleet on 11 February.

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