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[Page 7]

dropped part of her forward bulwarks & had a six inch gun trained on us. I immediately ordered all hands on deck & boats swung out. Asked the operator if he could get through S.O.S. to Rabaul, but there was no current on, just as well, as from what I saw later he would have blown the wireless room to pieces with his next shot. Launch with armed prize crew came aboard. The Lieut. In charge came to the bridge & informed me that they had been waiting for us for 3 days & asked where the Admiralty coal was stored. (Immediately on stopping the ship, I sent all code books & wireless instructions down to be burnt in furnaces) He told me that they had picked up a wireless message from Sydney to Rabaul, giving date of our departure & quantity of coal on board, & as they wanted coal, naturally she only had to steam in near entrance to St George's Channel & wait for us

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