Results 1-5of 5 Reviews
Blacksburg, South Carolina
February 20, 2005
From journal The Old South is Alive and Well in Charleston
by Taylor Shelby
Charleston, South Carolina
January 21, 2005
Charleston had already seen a ship similar to the Hunley. The David was a semi-submersible ship that had been designed and built by Dr. St. Julien Ravenel. The David had been semi-successful, but had failed to actually sink a Union ship. The Hunley was different. She could go all the way under, providing the stealth that would be needed for such a dangerous mission. General Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard (what a name!), the commander of Confederate forces in Charleston, wanted to try it out.
Unfortunately for the crew, the Hunley was a death-trap. Twice the Hunley sank in the harbor, killing 32 men, including Horace Hunley, before the ship was successful. But it did succeed. On the night of Feb 17th, 1864, lookouts watching from Sullivan's Island saw the Housatonic, the largest ship in the Union Navy, burst into flames. In three minutes, the ship was at the bottom of the Charleston Harbor. The Hunley had been successful. She surfaces, flashed her blue light to the shore, signaling her success. The men on shore stoked the fires and waited for her return. She never came back.
It 1995, the Hunley was finally found by author and shipwreck enthusiast Clive Cussler. The Hunley was brought up from the sea-floor. In 2003, in the last burial of the civil war, the soldiers were finally laid to rest. The Hunley now resides in a state of the art conservation facility, open to the public so that everyone can appreciate this incredible piece of history.
This is one of the most fascinating things I have ever seen. There are so many wonderful artifacts they found in the ship. At the site itself, you can see the ship and learn about its history through a number of exhibits that include video and pictures. For info on pricing, hours, and directions, visit the Friends of the Hunley Website.
Getting to the site is a bit of a hassle, but I assure you that it is worth it. You will truly appreciate the struggle of the men who died with this important ship.
From journal Military History in Charleston
by Mary Dickinson
May 3, 2004
Through an acrylic window that replaced one metal plate on the exterior of the submarine we could see a peculiarly shaped metal rod extending from stem to stern. Seven men sat side by side and turned the rod to operate the propeller and cause the vessel to move. The Charleston Museum and Patriots Point are vying for the privilege of displaying the original submarine after it has been reconditioned from over 150 years in a watery grave.
During the war, technology progressed dramatically when Confederate General P G T Beauregard was in a stalemate trying to figure out how to break the blockade. Although the concept of using submarine warfare was introduced during the Revolutionary War by David Bushnell, it was considered undesirable by both the north and the south at the beginning of the war. Beauregard decided to try it anyway. Two disastrous attempts to use the submarine resulted in all eight men aboard dying. The third sunk the USS Housatonic in five minutes and although the Hunley gave the signal of two lights, meaning success, it was never heard from again.
By examining the wreckage, scientists believe the men aboard ran out of oxygen and became unconscious and eventually the submarine sunk to the bottom. The Sons of the Confederacy want recognition for the brave men who lost their lives and for the first submarine to attack and sink an enemy ship during war time.
From journal Historic Charleston Harbor
pittsboro, North Carolina
February 23, 2003
I am looking forward to another visit as recovery continues. It is amazing to learn how and why this submarine works. Hard to find and it would not be exciting for young children. My nine-year-old son really liked it. Cost $20 dollars for two adults and one child.
From journal Historical Charleston
February 22, 2003
The Hunley was on display in a warehouse on an abandoned military base. When we first entered the warehouse, we were a little disappointed due to the plain interior. However, there was a gift shop, informational videos were constantly playing, and there was a changing of the guards for the tombs of the bodies recovered from the submarine.
When we actually got to see the Hunley, the experience was truly amazing. Everyone was awestruck at the significance of the tiny vessel. If the Hunley is still on disply when you are in Charleston, definitely stop by and see it. The Hunley is an important part of our history that you don't need to miss out on.
From journal Historic Charleston