Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Rear Admiral Albert P. Niblack, Commander, Patrol Squadron Based on Gibraltar, to Vice Admiral William S. Sims, Commander, United States Naval Forces Operating in European Waters

[Extract]

BUFFALO

24 September, 1918.

SECRET

From: Commander Patrol Squadrons Based on Gibraltar,

To  : FORCE COMMANDER

SUBJECT   Weekly report of Operations, 15 September to 21 September, 1918, inclusive. . . .

DESTROYERS

DECATUR - - :  Returned from Danger Zone Escort Duty, escorting H.M.S. CAESAR 15 September, Fueled, provisioned and sailed again on Danger Zone Escort Duty 17 September. Detached from escort 20 September to keep down submarine which was sighted by convoy and returned to base 21 September. . . .

SENECA         Returned from Ocean Escort Duty 20th September, reporting two actions with submarines and loss of eleven men of the volunteer crew put aboard the S.S. WELLINGTON in an attempt to save her.1 She was transferred from Ocean Escort Duty to Mediterranean Escort Duty. . . .

     2/   OPERATIONS.

          Convoy OM 99 (SENECA Ocean Escort) was attacked by submarine in Lat. 45 48 N Long. 10 58 W at 11:30 a.m. 16 September. British S.S. WELLINGTON torpedoed and abandoned. SENECA attacked with depth charges and gunfire. (See Report of Action No. 8)2 SENECA then placed volunteer crew of one officer one warrant officer and 18 men on board WELLINGTON to attempt to save her and take her in. The ship sank at 4:30 a.m. 17 September. Survivors were picked up by WARRINGTON and taken to Brest. . . .

          At 10:12 a.m. 20 September, after danger zone escort had met convoy OM 99 SENECA sighted periscope in 36 10 N 7 10 W SENECA attacked with depth charges and gun fire, and DECATUR attacked with depth charges/ The latter was detached to keep submarine down. No attack was made on convoy. . . .

(Signed_ A.P. Kiblack [i.e., Niblack]

Source Note: DTS, DNA, RG 45, Entry 520, Box 446.

Footnote 1: For more on the sinking of the Wellington, see: Henry B. Wilson to Sims, 22 September 1918.

Footnote 2: This report has not been found.

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