Sims Letter to Jellicoe, 29 December, 1917

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Extract from a Letter from William Sowden Sims to Jellicoe. Add. MSS. 49036, ff. 202-203 reproduced in The Jellicoe Papers Volume II, p. 259.

Admiralty House,

Queenstown,

December 29th, 1917.

Here I am at Admiralty House in bed since Christmas Eve with a rather painful attack of lumbago, and only just now being able to sit upa bit without considerable pain, otherwise I would have written before to say how much I was distressed to hear of your leaving the Admiralty, particularly when the effects of all your anti-submarine measures are showing such prominent results of complete success.

I assume of course that the Government's action is based upon the supposed political necessity of responding to the pressure of the ignorant criticisms of the "man in the street"—a danger to which all we military men must always be exposed in time of war. It would appear that when the public becomes impatient because the guns are not always firing, some of us have to sacrificed.

However I am confident subsequent events will entirely justify the measures you have taken, as rapidly as practicable, to combat the common enemy.

When I return to London, within a few days, I hope to see you and thank you in person for your unfailing kindness and consideration in helping me carry out my sometimes difficult orders. I hope also that I may be able to see you from time to time and that you will permit me to benefit by your extended experience.[..]