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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

Subject Copy.                           File No. <40/12/2>

Cablegram Sent 7 June 1918    RES1

To   Opnav Washington              Serial No. 9191

Prep. by CS    NCT2               D.R.

33 ADR        


9191.     Your 6715.3   The opinion expressed in my 85914 regarding condition of Azores submarines was based on statement by Lieutenant Commander L. D. Causey5 who had just come to London from the Azores and was entirely familiar with the condition of the boats. He unhesitatingly and without reserve stated that the boats were in just as good condition when he left the Azores as they had been when they left the United States. They cannot have deteriorated seriously in the short time elapsing since he left the Azores. Written reports from Rear Admiral Dunn6 do not entirely corroborate his cabled report that the boats are in such condition that they cannot successfully operate against the enemy, but it is undoubtedly the fact that the boats are not as reliable as some of the late types, and have certain inherent defects in design which cannot be remedied except by extensive alteration. It would appear desirable in view of limited repair facilities at the Azores that the K-boats be replaced there by boats of more recent design and less subject to breakdown. 21207.     9191.


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

Footnote 1: Initials of the transcriber.

Footnote 2: Capt. Nathan C. Twining, Sims’ Chief of Staff.

Footnote 3: Benson did not want to send replacements for the K-Boats unless it was absolutely necessary. William S. Benson to Sims, 31 May 1918, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B.

Footnote 5: Lt. Cmdr. Lewis D. Causey.

Footnote 6: RAdm. Herbert O. Dunn, Commander, Azores Detachment, was concerned about the state of the submarines provided his command and Sims suggested that those submarines be replaced with updated O class submarines. Submarine chief, Capt. Samuel S. Robison advocated that the department M-1, L-5, and L-8, be sent with the submarine tender Fulton. Sims to the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, 18 June 1918, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B. See: Sims to Dunn 18 May 1918; and Sims to Dunn 7 June 1918.