Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Captain Nathan C. Twining, Chief of Staff to Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters, to Admiral Sir Lewis Bayly, Commander, Southern Ireland

CS                                            30 October 1918.

Admiral Sir Lewis Bayly, R.N.,

     Admiralty House,

          Queenstown.

My dear Admiral,

          Your personal letter of October 27 to Admiral Sims has just been received,1 and as he is absent in Paris I will make a preliminary reply leaving it to him to answer in full on his return.2

          The matter of Armistice terms is of course under discussion now in Paris, and I have no idea whether the occupation of Heligoland will be made one of the conditions or not.3

          We have heard nothing here in regard to the matter you speak of with respect to recommendations concerning our officers by Foreign Officers.4 It seems to me quite incredible that any order such as you speak of should have been issued, but incredible things are done in Washington now and then.

          I think the relaxation of escorts is not due to any trust in the Hun, but to positive knowledge that for the present he cannot do us any harm. How long this situation will last is of course problematical.

Very sincerely yours,

Source Note: LT, DLC-MSS, William Sims Papers, Box 47. The letter is unsigned but there is a handwritten note below the close identifying Twining as the author. Moreover, in a letter to Bayly of 3 November Sims wrote that Captain Twining had replied to Bayly’s letter of 27 October in Sims’ absence. Also the notation “CS” at the top of this letter probably refers to Chief of Staff, which was Twining’s position.

Footnote 2: See: Sims to Bayly, 3 November 1918. Sims was in Paris attending a meeting of the Allied Naval Council. In that letter Sims again addressed the points mentioned here.

Footnote 3: In a follow-up letter to Bayly, Sims explained why that would not be a condition of peace. See: Sims to Bayly, 3 November 1918.

Footnote 4: Sims wrote on 3 November that he had heard nothing of this being a policy nor believed it to be one.

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