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Admiral William S. Benson, Chief of Naval Operations, to the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations

CABLEGRAM SENT November 18, 1917.

To Opnav Washington.


1531. Your 11501 Thoroughly approve policy outlined. Have gone into the probable demand for battleship force one on this side. Probability of it being needed for future service on this side very remote. The force should however be kept ready in accordance with policy outline and probability of its need for convoy duty-    Signed Benson

Signed Sims.


Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B. William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters, forwarded this message on Benson’s behalf during the latter’s visit to Europe for an Allied conference.

Footnote 1: Four American coal burning battleships were dispatched from the Battleship Force of the Atlantic Fleet to serve in Europe alongside the British Fleet. The remainder of the force was deemed cumbersome and logistically inconvenient for operations in European waters by the British. See: Josephus Daniels to Benson, 12 November 1917.

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