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Watson, John Crittenden 1842-

Naval officer; born in Frankfort, Ky., Aug. 24, [246] 1842; graduated at the United States Military Academy in 1860; served in the Civil War, being present at the passage of Forts Jackson and St. Philip and the Vicksburg batteries; took part in the battle of Mobile Bay, etc.; promoted lieutenant-commander, July 25, 1866; captain, March 6, 1887; and commodore, Nov. 7, 1897. On June 27, 1898, he was appointed chief of the Eastern Squadron, which was originally organized for the purpose of intercepting the Spanish fleet under Admiral Camara, which it was supposed had sailed for the United States under orders to devastate the coast cities and to cooperate with Admiral Cervera. This Spanish fleet for several weeks was variously reported as being at the Cape Verde Islands and at other points near the American seaboard, and at one time it started to go through the Suez Canal and to Manila Bay for the purpose of attacking Dewey's fleet. After the destruction of Cervera's fleet it was reported in the United States that Commodore Watson had received orders to proceed with all haste to the Spanish coast and to begin offensive operations there. This avowed purpose on the part of the United States government, taken in connection with the destruction of Cervera's fleet and the surrender of the Spanish army at Santiago, led the Spanish government to authorize the French ambassador in Washington to make overtures for peace. He was promoted rear-admiral, March 3, 1899; was commander-in-chief of the Asiatic Station from June 15, 1899, to April 19, 1900; and was appointed president of the naval examining board, Oct. 15, 1900.

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Cervera (3)
John Crittenden Watson (2)
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