The Consul at Tsingtao (Dorsey) to the Minister in China (MacMurray)98

No. 228


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A telegram received from the American Consul at Tsinan on the evening of the 19th indicated that conditions along the Tientsin-Pukow Railway were rapidly shaping most unfavorably for the Shantung and Allied troops. It also informed the Consulate that all Americans in Tsinan and elsewhere had been advised to leave at once and return when the situation had cleared up.

The certainty of an exodus of Americans to this port and regard for conditions that might develop here out of the approach of southern forces towards this area, made it desirable that American war ships should be detailed here for the time being to care for any emergency that might arise. The American destroyers Preble, Hurlburt, Pruitt, Sicard, and Noa were then in port but their period of stay uncertain. Consequently, in the Consulate’s telegram of April 19, 1928, to the Legation,99 it was requested that the American destroyers then here be detailed to Tsingtao until they could be replaced by other ships better adapted for evacuating a considerable number of people in case of necessity. There are about 200 Americans in Tsingtao at present and a similar number may be added by arrivals from the interior.

Following upon this the Senior American Naval Officer present informed me that he had been instructed to keep the Destroyer Division here until further orders, and he now advises that the U. S. S. Beaver and six submarines are under orders to proceed to this port and should arrive about the 25th or 26th when the destroyers will leave, probably for Chefoo.

I have [etc.]

W. Roderick Dorsey
  1. Copy transmitted to the Department by the consul in his despatch No. 813, April 24; received May 21.
  2. See telegram 253, April 20, from the Minister in China, supra.