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

Chronological Copy.

Date Nov 19 <18> 1918       Y-57              File No. <55-5-3>

Sent 8 am               Received Cablegram    Serial No. 5313

Recd 11 10 a m                                Cipher 43 ADR

From: Opnav Washington       To: Simsadus

O-1     Nov 19


No. 5313

          In returning troops to United States Army intend to use Boston Mass Yew [i.e., New] York, Newport News and Charleston S.C. as ports of debarkation. Vessels of transport force will ordinarily make ports to which at present assigned namely New York and Newport News. In certain bases Army may desire to transport organizations to camp vicinity Boston Mass and Charleston S.C.. When such occasions arise endeaver to embark organizations for Boston Mass in New York ships and route these ships to Boston, likewise embark organizations for Charleston S.C. in Newport News ships and route these vessels to Charleston. Vessels making Boston and Charleston will bunker at those ports. Commander U.S.Naval forces will route vessels accordance with above and further in accordance with desire Army authorities. On approach to United States coast vessels will be diverted by department as may be necessary. Sims furnish Army copies this dispatch1 20218 5313



Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B. The handwritten date is confirmed by the time/date notation at the end of the copy’s text.

Footnote 1: On the same day, Sims forwarded this dispatch to Maj. Gen. John J. Pershing, Commander, American Expeditionary Forces, informing him that he had authorized VAdm. Henry B. Wilson, Commander, United States Naval Forces in France, to make arrangements to transport the army and to communicate “directly” with Pershing or a delegated subordinate on a series of questions, including: what ports would be used to embark troops and equipment; would troops be given precedence over equipment; and when demobilization would begin. Sims suggested retaining troop transports in Europe until they were fully loaded. He also noted that he understood that no American Expeditionary troops would return via ports in Britain, adding that he would handle the dispatch of American troops from England himself; DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B.

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