Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters, to Captain Charles P. Nelson, Commander, Submarine Chaser Detachment Two

October 16th.1918.

My dear Nelson,

          I have been waiting to receive your written report of the stunt recently done by the submarine chasers before writing to you, but as your telegraphic report seems pretty complete, I will not wait any longer.1

          I want to congratulate you on having the good fortune to get into a scrap of this kind and upon coming out of it with so much credit. The performance of the little chasers reflects credit upon all parties concerned, but of course particularly upon the man who has organised them and has inspired them with something of his fighting spirit.

          Give my congratulations particularly to my former staff officer Bastedo,2 who seems to have been at the point of the wedge.

          You will be glad to know that everybody up here is delighted that you have had this chance and this success. It was generally understood that some of the principal dignitaries had it in for you and had assigned you to this duty with the idea of side-tracking you. There is accordingly elation over the duty you have and the opportunity you have enjoyed.

          I believe I am quite as much aware as you are of the limitations of your command. I know perfectly well that you have not got everything that you should have, and am all the more pleased that you have been able to do so much with so little. As you may imagine, there are very insistent demands upon us from all of the thirty odd stations for all sorts of things, and every one of them lack a good many things that they should have, particularly destroyers.

          If the war continues however, you may be sure that you people down that way will get your share. As things look now it would seem that we have the festive Hun on the run and that he will soon be in a condition of mind to surrender unconditionally.

Always very sincerely yours,      

Source Note: LT, DLC-MSS, William Sims Papers, Box 75. Following the close, the letter is addressed, “Captain C.P.Nelson. U.S.N./ Corfu.”

Footnote 2: Lt. Cmdr. Paul H. Bastedo.

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