On April 22nd, President McKinley ordered Rear Admiral Sampson to blockade Havana. Spain responded to U.S. naval maneuvers with a declaration of war. Congress immediately followed suit. Half-way around the world in Hong Kong, Commodore Dewey received a dispatch from Secretary of the Navy Long.
Proceed at once to the Philippine Islands. Commence operations against the Spanish fleet. Use utmost endeavors.
TITLE CARD: “ACT TWO: They Are Our Redeemers”
TITLE CARD: “Brave Dewey and His Men (Down at Manila Bay)”
“BRAVE DEWEY AND HIS MEN (DOWN AT MANILA BAY)”
A squadron lay at break of day with enemy in view.
It’s Dewey’s fleet the foe will meet down at Manila Bay.
Just after midnight on May 1st, 1898, Commodore Dewey’s flagship Olympia entered Manila Bay. Dewey’s nine ships, modernized to compete with the navies of Europe, had yet to be tested in battle.
C. G. CALKINS
Daylight came out behind Manila and revealed gray fortifications. The binoculars showed a cluster of black hulls. Sixteen Spanish ships were counted. A shell soared toward our line. The plunge of the projectile was followed by the roar of the gun.