Rear Admiral Henry S. Knapp, Allied Naval Armistice Commission, to the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations
CABLEGRAM RECEIVED – 22 June 1919. CRB.
Origin Mission Paris. Ser. No. – 521.
22 June For information C-S.1
521 Aminformed army releases military vessels of Navy from transport work. Request assignment of suitable vessel
s as Flagship at Constantinople for Bristol.2It would add greatly to dignity and prestige of US Naval Representative where we have great actual and greater potential interest. A MICHIGAN, CONNECTICUT E, NEBRASKA, MONTANA, or CHARLESTON is recommended in order named. A CHARLESTON has poor fuel economy and A MICHIGAN could probably be more quickly rearmed. PITTSBURGH could be sent temporarily if relief before need by force commander.3
In view diminished transportation of army person
al<nel>, estimated officially two hundred sixty thousand for July but may be less than one hundred thousand for July but may be less than one hundred thousand of third army be retained this side, request HENDERSON be assigned by command on her return to Brest. She would probably be available by time we will be able to take part in Schleswig patrol, the marines be put on board, and the ship moved to British port ready for instant service.
Request this dispatch be shown to Admiral Benson4 on his arrival. 113022.
Note: This message was filed at Western Union House for Opnav Washington (Rec’d by Op’r MV)
June 22nd-1919 1146 AM.
Source Note: Cy, DNA, RG 45, Entry 517B.
Footnote 1: Presumably the chief of staff at the Office of Naval Operations. This individual has not been further identified.
Footnote 2: RAdm. Mark L. Bristol, Commander, United States Naval Detachment in Turkish Waters.
Footnote 3: Bristol began his tenure with the converted yacht Scorpion as his flagship. He operated primarily out of the U.S. Embassy at Constantinople, and despite repeated requests, never received a battleship to use as a flagship. William R. Braisted, “Mark Lambert Bristol: Naval Diplomat Extraordinary of the Battleship Age,” James C. Bradford, ed., Admirals of the New Steel Navy: Makers of the American Naval Tradition, 1880-1930 (Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1990), 331-373.
Footnote 4: Adm. William S. Benson, Chief of Naval Operations.