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Admiral Sir Lewis Bayly, R.N., Commander, Naval Forces, Southern Ireland, to Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters

Admiralty House,


[date] 12.9.18

My dear Admiral,

     Captain Hepburn2 says that he thinks it is possible to get 36 more chasers making 72 in all. Now I am very anxious to get every kind of efficient weapon, and as many of it as possible; so I shall be delighted to have the 72, but on one condition. That is that Hepburn shall remain here in charge of them, and not be replaced by a more senior officer. Hepburn is quite 100%, pleasant to deal with, very able & keen, and knows how to deal with the youngsters. Therefore better Hepburn & 36, than another man and 72. Pringle3 has shewn that a Captain can deal with 36 destroyers & their necessities, and since I run the Chasers as I do the Destroyers there can be no necessity or reason for a change.

about ‘Dick Hunt’ Holmwood Lodge, Dorking of whom I wrote to you some time ago. He aches for a job and has today registered, this being the earliest date possible. He is very good at motor driving, accounts, or breeding Rhode Id Reds.4 I would you could xxxx help him. Godd luck.

                         Yours very sincerely

                              Lewis Bayly

If you can give us the HANNIBAL,5 together with the 72, we shall be nearly happy. She is much more wanted here than in Devonport where they have a big dockyard, and since she can go Holyhead, Waterford Queenstown or Berehaven, from all of which places chasers will work, he will save their having to hobble back here to get their ailments put right. In fact I am sure you will agree she is more wanted in this country of great distances than anywhere.


Source Note: ALS, DLC-MSS, William S. Sims Papers, Box 47.

Footnote 1: Queenstown, Ireland, Base 6.

Footnote 2: Capt. Arthur J. Hepburn, Commander, Submarine Chaser Detachment 3, U. S. SUBMARINE CHASER #325.

Footnote 3: Capt. Joel R. Poinsett Pringle, Chief of Staff, Destroyer Flotillas.

Footnote 4: No further identification found. Rhode Island Reds are an American breed of domestic chicken.

Footnote 5: U.S.S. HANNIBAL was a tender to submarine chasers at Plymouth, England. HANNIBAL served in English waters until December 1918, when she sailed for the Azores via Gibraltar as a sub-chaser escort. DANFS.

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