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 8 March EWC 1918
To Opnav Washington Serial No. 4926
Prep. by R-1 SX D.R.
4928. Your 3641. Desire point out British artisans can be housed and subsisted according to their usual standards much more economically than Americans, with consequent saving in tonnage. Also, wages paid Americans certain to cause dislocation local prices for commodities, with unrest and probably labor difficulties among neighboring British workmen. Consider it highly [un]advisable to add American workmen to existing British dockyard or private organizations, as homogeneous force more harmonious and efficient. British labor would probably not permit employment our mechanics on a large scale at American wages, whether enrolled or not. Another important consideration is that every available American skilled in ship or engine building imperatively needed to live up to our promised deliveries of destroyers and merchant ships, while British still have considerable supply skilled shipbuilding mechanics with colors. Truest <Trust> in view of above Department will consider policy. 4928.
Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B.