861.24/1294: Telegram

The Second Secretary of Embassy in the Soviet Union (Thompson) to the Secretary of State

110. From Faymonville for Stettinius. Our ships at northern ports must be provided with homeward cargo and ballast for navigational reasons rather than according to foreign trade preferences. Enough cargo must be furnished to provide normal sailing conditions. Thus condenser intakes must be held below water in rough weather and in the case of the Jefferson Myers 5,000 tons were estimated necessary to accomplish this. In spite of warnings reiterated over 18 months, ships with bronze instead of steel propellers are being sent to northern ports. Enough cargo must therefore be furnished to keep bronze propellers 4 feet below ice to avoid serious damage from bent propellers. For these and other reasons and in accordance with Harriman’s instructions I have continued to urge Soviet authorities to provide adequate cargo for our ships at northern ports. I have not pressed for shipments of apatite. This refers to your cable 103, February 23, 11 p.m.62 The trial cargo mentioned in your cable 86, February 13, 10 p.m.63 is now being prepared and will be sent unless you cancel. Outbound cargoes on American ships have been limited by several restrictions and suitable ballast is not easily obtainable. It may therefore be necessary for Defense Supplies to accept cargoes of low priority. The securing of cargoes and the dispatch of our ships [Page 749] from White Sea ports has been extremely well handled by Lt. Commander George D. Roullard, United States Navy representative of War Shipping Administration.64 [Faymonville.]

  1. Not printed.
  2. Not printed, but see footnote 56, p. 745.
  3. Lt. Comdr. George D. Roullard, Assistant Naval Attaché and Assistant Naval Attaché for Air in the Soviet Union.