Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters, to Captain Joel R. Poinsett Pringle, Chief of Staff, Destroyer Flotillas
March 29, 1918.
From: Force Commander.
To : Chief of Staff, Destroyer Flotillas.
Subject: Concentration of destroyers in North Sea.
1. In certain possible circumstances of extreme urgency, it may become necessary to concentrate all the available British and American destroyers of modern type, in the North Sea. IN case such emergency arises, the Admiralty will telegraph the Senior British Naval Officer concerned, “Concentrate destroyers in North Sea.”
2. Among the destroyers affected by this plan are the United States destroyers based on Queenstown and armed with 4" guns, and the orders will be transmitted to them through Commander-in-Chief, Queenstown.
3. Upon the receipt of these orders the following procedure is to be carried out:
(a) Those in harbor are to be fueled and dispatched immediately.
(b) Those at sea not engaged in escorting loaded troop
transports will proceed immediately to the base for fuel, and then to proceed to destination.
(c) Those at sea engaged in escort of loaded troop
transports will conduct the transports to their destination before obeying the recall orders.
(d) Those boiler cleaning are to close up their boilers immediately and await orders.
(e) Those refitting are to prepare for sea at the utmost dispatch.
(f) All destroyers are to proceed independently with all dispatch.
(g) The destination, unless otherwise ordered, will be SCAPA, where destroyers arriving will place themselves under the orders of the Commander-in-Chief, Grand Fleet.
4. You will please issue confidentially, to Commanding Officers of all United States destroyers concerned, the necessary instructions in accordance with the foregoing.
W. S. Sims