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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. <42-4-1>

Cablegram Received July: <17, 1918.> 19219 MJK

Origin    Opnav Washington.                      Ser. No. 8644

R 2  July 20

31 ADR                  CORRECTED COPY.


8644. Your 1299.1 You are authorized to take over and man following Army Transports which are being operated by General Pershing2 on bare boat charter with civilian crew. Names following AU SABLE, JUPITER, KERESAN KERLEW LEVISA USAT [United States Army Transport] MCCLENNAN <MCCLELLAN> WILLIAM O-BRIEN BERWIND HIL<T>ON KEROWLEE KERMOOR LOUIS <Lewis> K THURLOW MOLDEGARDE CAROLINIAN FRED’K LUCKENBACK<h> KERKENNA KERWOOD MACONA PEQUOT. In addition above you are authorized to take over and man 20 Lake steamers3 now operated by General Pershing on time charter from Shipping Control Committee manned with civilian crew. Names following LAKE ARTHUR LAKE LEMANDO LAKE OWENS LAKE SUNAPEE LAKE WESTON LAKE CAPENS LAKE ELIZABETH LAKE CLEAR LAKE LILLIAN LAKE PEWAUKEE LAKE TRAVERSE LAKE EDON LAKE MARRY LAKE PORTAGE LAKE CRESCENT LAKE OTISCO LAKE ST REGIS LAKE TULARE LAKE ST CLAIR LAKE LARGO.

     First 19 vessels will continue on bare boat charter and will be taken over as soon as you have personnel available. Second 20 vessels will continue on time charter as at present until taken over by you when they will be taken on bare boat charter.

     Second 20 Lake steamers will be taken over and manned as opportunity permits.

     Direct present agent to continue operation until you are ready man vessels.

     Cost of supplies, repairs, et cetera will be paid from Naval appropriation and will be later adjusted and charged to Army account. Acknowledge.25017 8644


Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B. The handwritten date is confirmed by the time/date stamp at the end of the cable.

Footnote 1: This document has not been found.

Footnote 2: Maj. Gen. John J. Pershing, Commander-in-Chief, American Expeditionary Forces.

Footnote 3: Lake steamers were commercial vessels originally built for use on the Great Lakes, but converted for oceanic use during the war.

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