File No. 855.48/250
The Ambassador in Germany ( Gerard ) to the Secretary of State
[Received April 21, 11.15 p. m.]
2089. Have received letter from Minister for Foreign Affairs stating he has telegraphed German Legation, The Hague, authorizing it [Page 1038] to issue letters of escort to ships of commission, not only for return voyage to America, but also for trip to England provided ships are required by terms of charter to return to England and they take no cargo for England. For safety of ships strongly urged that they carry by day and by night clearly recognizable identification markings. Also recommend that ships of commission returning to America should not call at English ports solely for coaling, but should coal at Rotterdam where German coal will be provided if possible. German submarines already instructed to let ships of commission pass unmolested when recognizable as such.