Mr. Andrews to Mr. Fish.
Stockholm, July 12, 1875. (Received July 31.)
Sir: It affords me much satisfaction to report the recent visit to Stockholm of the United States squadron, under the command of Rear-Admiral John L. Worden.
The squadron, which consisted of the flag-ship “Franklin,” Captain Franklin commanding, and the “Alaska,” Captain Carter commanding, arrived and anchored at Tralhafvet, (Slave Sea,) a sheltered expanse of water one mile out from Fort Waxholm and fifteen miles distant from Stockholm, about 4 o’clock Monday afternoon, the 5th instant. Owing to obstructions at Fort Waxholm, vessels like the Franklin cannot yet come up to Stockholm.
As the King was going to start for Russia at 6 p.m. Tuesday, and believing it would have a good effect if the admiral and some of his officers should go to the palace and pay their respects to him, I had been at some pains to be advised of the arrival of the squadron, so that I could communicate with the admiral in season to effect that object. Through the kindness of Admiral Lagercrantz, of the Swedish Navy, I was enabled to get out to the squadron by 8 p.m. Monday; at the same time Admiral Lagercrantz sent out his aide, Captain Yan Horn, to welcome Admiral Worden, and to tender him the use of the fine government steamer, the “Skoldman,” which conveyed us out during his stay here, I might add that I was glad to make Admiral Worden the first visit on account of his very distinguished public services.
* * * * * * *
The result of the trip was that I was enabled promptly the next day, at 12 o’clock noon, to present Admiral Worden and ten or twelve of his officers, all in full uniform, to His Majesty. The latter greeted Admiral Worden with hearty cordiality, and, while holding the admiral’s hand in both of his, said to him, [in a voice so as to be heard by all in the room:] “Your eminent services to your Government are well known and admired in my country—in all countries, indeed, where good conduct and heroism are appreciated.” His Majesty spoke a few words with about all of the officers. His manner was unrestrained and cordial, and made, I believe, a good impression. The officers were from various parts of our country. One was from Massachusetts, two or three from New York, one or two from Maryland, one from Tennessee, one from Missouri, and so on. I am sure the King must have been very favorably impressed by their appearance. He said to the admiral, and repeated the remark, that he was sorry their visit had occurred while he was to be absent, for he would like to have been present and shown them some attention
Immediately after this audience, I accompanied the admiral, Captain Franklin, and Lieutenant Soley of his staff also being along, on visits to the minister of marine, Baron Yon Otter, and the Swedish admiral, Mr. Lagercrantz, with both of whom personal interviews were had. We also left cards at the residences of the governor and military commander of Stockholm. Admiral Worden then paid an official visit to the legation.
The same morning Lieutenant H julhammer, of the Swedish navy, was assigned by the minister of marine for duty as aide to Admiral Worden during his stay in Stockholm.
At Admiral Worden’s first interview with the minister of marine he [Page 1262] accepted the latter’s invitation for an excursion by steamer, on Thursday, to the old castle of Gripsholm. In this excursion, besides the admiral’s party and a number of families of distinguished Swedes, was the family of the British minister, and my own family. Breakfast was served on board the steamer and dinner at the port at Gripsholm. A band of music accompanied the excursion. On our return we visited the palace of Drottningholm.
At 5 o’clock Wednesday, the day previous to this excursion, Admiral Worden and one of his daughters, Captain Franklin and wife. General Keyes, and several officers of the squadron, dined at this legation. The party was also honored with the company of the Swedish minister of marine and wife. Admiral Lagercrantz and wife, and other officers of the Swedish navy; there being in all twenty-two guests.
On Friday, Admiral and Mrs. Worden gave a fine breakfast on board the “Franklin” to about the same party of ladies and gentlemen who were on the excursion to Gripsholm, including the British minister, the Hon. Edward Erskine, his wife, and two daughters. The band of the “Franklin” discoursed fine music, and the entertainment was in all respects delightful, and appeared to be highly agreeable to all who took part in it. On our passage out to the “Franklin” that day we called at the new and strong fort of Fredretsborg, to give Admiral Worden an opportunity to inspect it.
It was the admiral’s intention to have the squadron start for Cronstadt on Saturday at 1 p.m., but, as stormy weather came up, it did not get off till Sunday morning. Up to Saturday the weather had been clear and warm.
About the time of the admiral’s arrival two of the principal daily newspapers of Stockholm published full and graphic accounts of the celebrated combat between the Monitor and the Merrimac; one of the accounts being taken from Lossing’s History of the Civil War. The Swedes thus had their recollections refreshed as to his brilliant record, and the imperishable manner in which his name is associated with that of their countryman, John Ericsson.
Several thousands of the people of Stockholm visited the “Franklin.” In the vicinity of Waxholm are many summer villas, occupied by residents of Stockholm; and the newspapers mention that the latter gave an entertainment to some of the officers of the squadron, by whom it was in return politely reciprocated.
The newspapers have invariably spoken in a complimentary manner of the squadron and its officers, of the appearance of the ships, and the cleanliness, order, and harmony prevailing on board.
I am confident that this visit to Stockholm of Admiral Worden and the squadron under his command has made an excellent impression here. If the King had been present, I am pretty sure the admiral would have received attention from him. I only regret that the squadron was not able to make a longer stay here, so that something more could have been seen of the interior and more fertile parts of Sweden— something of the beautiful country estates.
I was informed there was no sickness on the “Franklin.”
I am, &c.