Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Office of the Chief of Naval Operations to Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters

Cablegram Received November 29 [1917]

Origin Opnav, Washington Ser. No. 1353

NCB 18 D.

VERY SECRET

Simsadus.

1353. Following cable sent by Secretary War to General Pershing1 quote Bri<t>ish government has offered Olympic for use transporting troops Liverpool, England. Under present restrictions of 600 troops per day and not exceeding 5,000 troops at one time, this offer cannot be given full consideration, until definitely determined whether additional troops carried by Olympic, approximately 6100, can be transported through England, across channel, and accommodated through French ports. Advise. Similar cablegrams sent by British Minister of Shipping here to Minister of Shipping London,2 England and Admiral Sims. Biddle Chief Staff.3 Unquote. Chief of Embarkation Service U.S. Army4 has requested that we obtain an expression of opinion from you as to adviseability of accepting this offer. This office has no further word from Admiralty regarding desireability of our commandeering some of our light draft, fast coast ships for cross channel service in transporting troops. 15029.

Admiral Benson.              

Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B. Document is an: “Action Copy.

Footnote 1: Secretary of War Newton D. Baker and Gen. John J. Pershing, U.S.A., Commander, American Expeditionary Forces.

Footnote 2: Minister of Shipping London Sir Joseph Maclay.

Footnote 3: Gen. John Biddle, U.S.A.

Footnote 4: Brig. Gen. Frank T. Hines.

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