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NHIS volume has been compiled in the office of Library and Naval
War Records, Navy Department, under authorization of the Joint
Committee on Printing. It includes: The addresses delivered at the United States Naval Academy, April 24, 1906, printed from copy furnished by the distinguished speakers of the day;
The official report of General Horace Porter to the State Department, with inclosures and illustrations which set forth the search for, discovery, and identification of the body of John Paul Jones;
An extract from the report of Rear-Admiral Sigsbee describing the most important ceremonies connected with the John Paul Jones expedition, including the transfer in Paris of the body from First Special Ambassador Porter to Junior Special Ambassador Loomis, and from the latter to Rear-Admiral Sigsbee, and its transportation from Paris to the United States Naval Academy and deposit in the now historic brick vault, where it lay under guard for the nine months preceding April 24, 1906;
Letters and illustrations selected from authentic correspondence and portraiture for the purpose of showing the character and personal appearance of our first great sea fighter;
The chronology, prepared mainly from carded data collected in searches for information in answer to inquiries.
General Porter's report includes plans and illustrations which show in part the dangers and difficulties which he encountered and overcame. The reports of the official engineer who supervised the excavations and of the physicians and microscopist who examined the body establish the thoroughness of the explorations of the cemetery and the pathological conditions that existed within the body at the time of death. The illustration by means of microphotographs of vital organs of a man born in 1747 is unique. These reports are an important part of the testimony that establishes the identity of the body.
The report of Rear-Admiral Sigsbee is a part of the history of France and of the United States of America.
The facsimiles of Jones's writing, dated 1770, 1778, and 1786, having the characteristic signatures Juo. Paul, Jno. P. Jones, and J. Paul Jones (or Paul Jones) have been prepared from the originals now preserved in Scotland. The portraits here reproduced (except those by Heuri Toussaint and Miss Beaux) were probably made during the life of John Paul Jones.
It is not possible to determine that every statement in the chronology is accurate, but a reference for every item is given in convenient form, and statements known to be incorrect generally have been omitted.
\HE 24th of April, 1906, was chosen for the commemorative exer
cises in honor of John Paul Jones by President Roosevelt because
it was the anniversary of Jones's famous capture of the British ship of war Drake, off Carrickfergus, in 1778. This date, occurred during the session of Congress, the academic year at the United States Naval Academy, and the convention of the Daughters of the American Revolution in Washington.
The Secretary of the Navy, Hon. Charles J. Bonaparte, issued the invitations. The admirable arrangements at the United States Naval Academy were made by Rear-Admiral Sands, U. S. Navy, Superintendent. Invitations were sent to the President; the ambassador and embassy of France; the principal officers of the Government, legislative, executive, and judicial; the Navy; the Army; governors of States; the militia; patriotic societies, and distinguished men and women of America. Cards of admission were mailed, as acceptances were received, by the Secretary of the Navy. Special trains were provided for the Presidential and Congressional parties from Washington and the regular train service was increased from New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington to Annapolis.
April 24 was clear and cool with a fresh northwesterly breeze. The Presidential train arrived at Annapolis at 12:45 p. m. and was met by the Superintendent of the Naval Academy and the academic board with automobiles. A national salute was fired from the U. S. S. Hartford, the famous old flagship of Farragut at New Orleans and Mobile Bay. Two companies of the Thirteenth U. S. Cavalry, under Col. Charles A. P. Hatfield, U. S. Army, furnished an escort to the Superintendent's house, where luncheon was served. The President and party, in motor cars, were then escorted by a battalion of midshipmen to the armory, through lines of midshipmen, French sailors, United States sailors, marines, troopers, and thousands of cheering spectators, The President, with the speakers of the day, escorted by the Secretary of the Navy and the Superintendent, entered the armory at 2.24 p. m. and mounted the speakers' stand. The audience rose and remained standing while the Baltimore Oratorio Society sang the “Star-Spangled Banner.”
The casket containing the body of John Paul Jones rested upon trestles before the stand, under a guard composed of petty officers of the navies of France and the United States. The casket was draped with the Union Jack, and upon it lay a wreath of laurel, a spray of palm, and the gold-mounted sword presented by Louis XVI of France to the conqueror of the Serapis. The armory and speakers' stand were decorated with the colors of France and the United States of America. Facing the stand and casket were Admiral George Dewey, U. S. Navy; Rear-Admiral Campion, commanding the French squadron; RearAdmirals Charles H. Davis and Royal B. Bradford, U. S. Navy, commanding United States squadrons. Behind these flag-officers were seated their aids, the visiting officers of France, and the heads of departments of the Academy. Seats on each side of this central section faced toward the center of the armory. Sections of seats were reserved for Senators and Members of Congress and other special parties. The audience was representative of the patriotism and traditions of the nation. The Senate, the House, the Cabinet, every branch of the Government, and national patriotic societies were represented.
The silence that followed the singing of the "Star-Spangled Banner" was broken by the clear, incisive voice of Hon. Charles J. Bonaparte, Secretary of the Navy, presenting the President.
The President spoke for thirty minutes and was frequently interrupted by applause. Every speaker was presented by the Secretary of the Navy and each received close attention and warm approval. The official programme was executed without variation.
The exercises in the armory closed at 4.38 p. m. with the rendering of “How Sleep the Brave." The audience stood in silence and the casket was taken to the space beneath the stairs in Bancroft Hall, where, in the presence of the distinguished officials, Chaplain Clark, U. S. Navy, offered a simple prayer, the last rite of the official programme. The casket, draped with the Union Jack, was left under the care of a marine guard, where it will remain until transferred to the crypt in the Naval Academy chapel.
The President of the United States sent to the President of France the following telegram:
THE WHITE HOUSE,
Washington, April 24, 1906. To the PRESIDENT OF FRANCE:
On the occasion of the formal reception at Annapolis of the body of John Paul Jones I wish to thank you and, through you, the great French nation for its distinguished courtesy in connection with this event-a courtesy of a kind which serves to keep even more vividly before us the invaluable aid rendered by France to this country at what was well-nigh the most critical period of its history. France holds a peculiar place in the heart of the American people, and on behalf of that people I wish all success, prosperity, and happiness to the mighty Republic over which you preside.