Rear Admiral William F. Fullam, Commander, Pacific Fleet Reserve Force, to Rear Admiral Leigh C. Palmer, Chief of the Bureau of Navigation
UNITED STATES PACIFIC FLEET
U. S. S. PUEBLO, FLAGSHIP
San Francisco, California,
25 March, 1917.
My dear Palmer:-
I enclose for your eye copy of a circular letter just issued to my ships.
I am trying hard to arouse some military enthusiasm, and Heaven knows we need it.
We are doing all we can to stimulate recruiting with baseball teams and the assistance of the enlisted men. The apathy of the people on this coast, however, is amazing.
I fear you may have been irritated by my taking up the personnel with Operations. But, my dear Palmer, ships can’t “operate” without men, and I thought under the present organization of the Navy Department, and particularly at a time like this, that Operations would co-ordinate with Bureaus. For this reason I have sent nearly all of my official letter through Operations.
I have worked very hard in my attempts to get these ships ready for war. My correspondence with the Department for a year and a half has shown one constant, never-ending struggle. Reviewing it now, I feel that I have deserved some credit, but I have received very little evidence that my work has been properly appreciated. Of course, I haven’t worked simply to win the Department’s approval, but rather from a sense of duty, and because I like to do things; and when I know I’m right I will insist on doing things in the face of every discouragement.
I am well supported by the officers of the Reserve Force.
Of course, we will have to work mighty hard to train our crews when mobilization takes place. We all welcome the job.
W. F. Fullam
Source Note: Cy, DLC-MSS, William F. Fullam Papers, Box 4. Written on, “UNITED STATES PACIFIC FLEET/RESERVE FORCE/U. S. S. PUEBLO, FLAGSHIP,” stationary. Addressed below close: “Rear Admiral L. C. Palmer,/U S. Navy, Chief of Bureau/of Navigation, Navy Department,/Washington, D.C.”