FOR SUBSCRIBERS
by George W. Penington  -  Editor

JULY 31, 2004
    ISSUE  #51   PAGE 1


Welcome from the Hunley Store 

CSS Arkansas :  Special Price: 249.95 plus  S&H   ( Product #)  

 

Quantities are limited.

96-004 C.S.S. Arkansas: 1/96th Scale Approx. 24” long overall. Now you can start building ironclads from the ACW in the West. This kit features resin and metal fittings, and includes a complete interior. Can be finished as cutaway or non-cutaway, and is of moderate difficulty. Paint and glue not included.

http://www.hunleystore.com/CSS_Arkansas.htm

 

1) WELCOME TO THE NEW HUNLEY NEWSLETTER

A special welcome to all the new subscribers. This newsletter will be published once a month  with a link to the online addition available to subscribers only.

  ALL issues are dedicated not only to the brave and honorable Men of the Hunley, but to the Subscribers and Contributors to each issue, particularly to the CSS H L HUNLEY CLUB.      THANKS ALL,  George W. Penington


  2) AFTER THE FINAL BURIAL OF THE LAST HUNLEY CREW

   
Mike (the Torpedo Man) Kochan throws dirt on the graves of the Final Crew after the burial ceremonies were over.   Burial site of the final crew
ALAN HAWES/STAFF

used with permission from the Post and Courier and Charleston.net
 
   
Final Crew laid to rest - 8 flags mark each casket.   Location of Final Crew of The Hunley - Flags mark plots  
   
View of Second Crew on Right of Horace Hunley - picture taken after final burial.  Shows the five crewmen who died in the first sinking of the Hunley   The above picture is the Horace Hunley Memorial with the second crew of the Confederate States Submarine H L Hunley taken in 2003. The mystery to me is when and how the first crew of the Hunley was moved and buried at this site?  

3) MYSTERY OF THE GRAVE MARKERS

"Now that C.Simpkins has been identified as Lumpkin has anyone heard

of plans to change the existing markers in Magnolia cemetery? Also
any news on a new marker for the final crew?"
Mike.

Mike: I interviewed some of the staff at Magnolia Cemetery and asked them why there were no markers, their response was that the Staff at the Friends of the Hunley, Inc. were not positive about the names of the crewmen and they were not ready to "carve them in stone".  I also asked if they could provide a layout showing the locations and identification of each crewman.  The response I got was that they were not provided one and was not sure anyone knew the order of burial.

The Post and Courier reported "The man who sat at the second crank position in the Confederate sub may be the sailor identified in historical accounts as C. Simkins. Scientists and historians know little of this elusive sailor, but believe the man's surname may actually be Lumpkin."


Used with permission from the Post and Courier and Charleston.net

Scientists continue to search for more information on this sailor, including a verification of his name. In April 1864, Capt. M. M. Gray of the office of submarine defenses listed him among the Hunley's MIA crew as "C. Simkins." Over the years, the spelling evolved into "Simpkins."

In one letter written nearly 30 years after the war, William Alexander, the submarine's builder and onetime first officer, identifies the man as Lumpkin. The Indian Chief's 1863 duty roster is mostly illegible. On that paper, recording sailors' pay, the name reads either "Lumpkin" or Simpkin." It's hard to tell. Abrams is convinced the man's name is C. Lumpkin. It is plausible that the name was misread in 1864, and the mistake repeated in official records for more than a century."...BRIAN HICKS Of The Post and Courier Staff
 


 Discussions with the CSS H L Hunley Club

4) THE HUNLEY TO SAIL AGAIN???? 

I was talking to a good friend of mine that went on the Hunley tour
two weeks ago and he said that FOTH plans to patch her up and
actually sail the Hunley again. I told him that he must have misunderstood
the guide, and that they would more likely build a replica for any
try outs in the water. However he was quit adamant that the original
Hunley would sail again. I don't buy it myself but I let it go at that.
Anyone else hear of this? 
Mike.

 About a year and a half ago, Paul Mardikian told me that when they
get through with her, the Hunley will be like a "brand new submarine".  I inferred from his comment that the concretion was covering nearly un-oxidized metal, which would be nearly as exact as it was 140 years ago.
 
 Also, the volunteers in the lab are just that.  I've heard some very strange answers to questions from them, nothing intentionally misleading, just misinformation mostly due to the volunteer's misunderstanding of what had been told to them.
 
 All of the aircraft on display in the Smithsonian are CAPABLE of flying, even though everyone understands that the Spirit of St; Louis will never again move under its own power.  Perhaps this is what had been told to the volunteer and subsequently passed on to your friend.

 I wouldn't think it was too far fetched to imagine the Hunley placed on display with special effect lighting giving the impression that she is actually under water either, which may also be what the volunteer miss-heard.
 
 Whatever the truth is, I wouldn't worry about the FOTH losing all their marbles and attempt to restage history with a priceless artifact.
 Bruce

I never gave any credence to what my friend told me how ever it never occurred to me that the guide was giving out misinformation. When you’re listening to guides you expect them to be well trained on the subject matter. I'm sure your right, Bruce, that this is the case. Also Andy, I to remember that there was talk of building a bolt by bolt working replica of the Hunley to test it's capabilities in the water.
Mike.

 5) How did the crew see the situation?


 The only thing that really matters in this context is what Dixon and the
crew of the Hunley believed, and I think it's likely that they expected
capture to result in a humiliating death.
 My point about tonnage has nothing to do with the solving the mystery of
the Hunley. I just find it interesting that the real purpose of the
Hunley was to protect its own side's shipping by attacking a warship, in
contrast to the real purpose of the submarines of WWI and WWII, which
was to destroy enemy shipping by attacking merchant vessels.

 Barry

6) A death protocol?
Basically, any Confederate weapon employed in defending its harbors were
for the purpose of fending off or destroying enemy warships.  That was the
purpose of the Hunley's construction (as well as its predecessors).  To a
lesser extent, commerce raiding was also used to draw off Union forces
from the ports.  However, submarines were used in the world wars against
warships as well as merchant vessels - it was the target of opportunity
that mattered.  Until 1910, submarines were designed primarily as coastal
defense vessels, and not as seagoing offensive weapons.  Even in this day,
there is a class of submarines that are classified as coastal defense.

But I must disagree with the notion that the crew seriously entertained a
"death protocol".  The old thriller maxim that any agent in a high-risk
venture must have some reasonable chance of getting out alive applies here
as well.  I doubt that the crew viewed their mission as kamikaze/kaiten.
Death was an occupational risk, not the desired outcome.  I do not think
that anyone would have volunteered for a suicide mission.

First, no documents - whether personal letters or survivor's memoirs state
anything definitively - stated that the crew planned to cash in if they
cannot get the vessel back to port.  Alexander did not express an opinion
that the crew did themselves in.  Reports of a suicide pact were more
hearsay and after the fact.

Second, one must remember that the "David" was temporarily abandoned after its attack on the "New Ironsides".  If the "Hunley" crew could abandon the
vessel as the only way to save their lives, they would.  Dixon knew the
submarine would sink swiftly without sacrificing the crew.

Third, there was a convention that if any prisoners were executed by one
side, retaliation would be meted out to enemy prisoners.  Even if facing
capture, I believe that Dixon knew that he would have time on his side.
One cannot discourage the use of "infernal machines" if the execution was
in secret.

Fourth, I believe that Dixon and the crew underestimated the amount of
oxygen remained.  They expected to have 2.5 hrs of oxygen - but that would
only apply if they did not do any physical exertions.  However, I surmise
that they were cranking for probably 30 minutes and used up most of the
breathable air.  The bellows was probably ineffective - recycling more
CO2 than 02 - Becker probably collapsed at his post after everyone else
succumbed.

I believe that the crew miscalculated on their chances of survival - if
they perceived surrender as the only means of survival, they would have.

maclilus

 maclilus@p... wrote:
 Barry:

    I must admit that I both physically and conceptually more removed
from  the evidence than most, I still cannot reconcile myself to the
notion  of a suicide pact - whether planned or decided on the spot.  As
mentioned earlier, such references seemed second-hand or speculative
in  nature.
 
    As for planned suicide mission, whether something like the "Yamato" or  the kamikaze/kaiten, I cannot accept at all.  No final ceremony, no  final address or preparation of their personal effects, and to have  their affairs in order are evident.  Certainly, they could have been  lost when Charleston fell one year later.

   As for a spur of the moment, it could be.  Yet, I would think that  Dixon would have allowed his crew to abandon ship.  If so then, could  there have been nine crewmen?  Given the tides and currents, any  floating bodies would either drift ashore, drift out to sea, or sink.  And they would not hover in the area of the Hunley.  I do not think  Dixon would murder his crew.

   I think that Dixon would want to return to port to try out his  ship again.  He proved that he could sink a vessel.  He would want to do it again.  If he did not return, what assurance did he have that a similar  attack would be tried again?

    If there was any consideration of a suicide pact, then why did
not the crew try to leave a written record in the sub?  Trapped miners
would.
 I still think Dixon miscalculated endurance.  It is possible that
Union  naval activity in the area kept the "Hunley" beneath the surface
longer  than it should have.
 
    The final consideration is where on Dixon's body was found the
coin?  I  recall that it was in his pocket.  If it was in his hand instead, I
 would be more likely to agree that he was waiting out the end....maclilus

With respect to the gold coin, I have spoken with Senator Glenn McConnell,
the Chairman of the Hunley Commission, who was present when the gold coin
was discovered.

Senator McConnell recounted this to me during a discussion in which he was
describing the way Lt. Dixon's body was positioned when the Hunley was
opened at the Lasch Conservation Laboratory.  According to McConnell, the
coin was discovered when Maria Jacobson had positioned herself in a manner
so that she could place her arms under Dixon's legs and around his torso in
order to facilitate lifting his remains from the silt that had settled
inside the Hunley.  McConnell said that as she was maneuvering her arms
under Dixon when her hand hit something hard and metallic inside Dixon's
pants pocket.  She then reached inside and pulled out the coin.

McConnell also told me the Hunley Commission has insured the coin for $10
million. Jim Hickmon

 

 To maclilus,
<<I still cannot reconcile myself to the notion of a suicide pact whether planned or decided on the spot.>>

I think of it more as a contingency plan than a "suicide pact." Dixon
and the crew must have made plans and agreements to cover situations
in which they would survive the attack but not be able to get back to
shore. It would have been foolish not to. Obviously, they couldn't have planned for every possibility but serious damage to the boat had to be near the top of the list.

<< No final ceremony, no final address or preparation of their
personal effects, and to have their affairs in order are evident.
>>

As you say, there's no evidence one way or the other, which is not surprising.

<<...I would think that Dixon would have allowed his crew to abandon
ship.
>>

I don't think abandoning ship was an option. The ability of a human being to survive in cold water wasn't determined scientifically until WWII. However, Dixon must have known the water temperature and thus must have had a reasonably accurate idea of the feasibility of swimming to shore. I'm no expert but I suspect it was quite low.

<<...why did not the crew try to leave a written record in the sub?
Trapped miners would
.>>

We don't know for sure that they didn't. Dixon may have kept a captain's log but paper wouldn't have survived the long immersion. There was at least one pencil* on board and a pocket knife to sharpen it. I think I remember reading about some oilskin having been found a while back.
Barry



 


7) the real purpose of the Hunley

 Several of the books I've read say that the crew, upon being captured, would have been unequivocally hanged as spies, even if in uniform.  I have to wonder whether this claim, which I've seen as well, is actually documented by contemporary sources, or if it's rather melodramatic speculation by modern writers. While HUNLEY was a novel means of *delivering* the weapon, the destruction of enemy warships without warning by mines or other "infernal machines" was a fairly well-established tactic by 1864.  ----------> AH

 Attacking merchant shipping was already established as a "guerre de course" - every Navy that opposed Britain in the past 200 years by that time practiced it - it was the only practical alternative, and was used by the American Navy in the Revolution and War of 1812.  However, in 1861, all Confederate ships - whether privateers or "commissioned" CSN
vessels were declared as "pirates" by Federal authorities.  I surmise the reason was not necessarily as a justification for hanging its crews (I am at a loss to find any documentation verifying any such actions took place -during or after the war), but to deny any legal recognition to the Confederate government.  However, troops in the field and sailors at
sea continued to follow the protocols more or less for a variety of reasons (e.g., military custom, family or fraternal) but with the end of "managing the level of violence."

The Russian Navy employed a system of mine defenses for its base at Kronstadt a decade before - but proved ineffective during a Anglo-French attack.  This could be compared to the effectiveness of the Singer torpedoes at Mobile Bay.  Apparently, 19th Century naval mines were only effective for short periods of time underwater.
 
The idea of tonnage - whether of merchant or naval warships - did not really matter.  Submarines were only capable of sinking a ship - prize crews could not be accommodated.  The Hunley was brought to Charleston primarily due to the huge bounty on Union warships promised by its merchants.  Had not such a bounty been promised, the Hunley would have been likely a footnote in Mobile's history, like the St. Patrick – a promising attempt, but nothing else…..maclilus

The only thing that really matters in this context is what Dixon and the crew of the Hunley believed, and I think it's likely that they expected capture to result in a humiliating death.

My point about tonnage has nothing to do with the solving the mystery of the Hunley. I just find it interesting that the real purpose of the Hunley was to protect its own side's shipping by attacking a warship, in contrast to the real purpose of the submarines of WWI and WWII,
which was to destroy enemy shipping by attacking merchant vessels.
Barry

8) MODEL NEWS AND DISCUSSION

 "toavakama" wrote:
 Is there anyone out who has built models of the Hunley?
 I have just received in the mail Verlinden model of the Hunley, and
 it looks quit good. I like the fact that all the stuff that is the
 center of speculation is left off the kit, to be built by the
 modeler. Any thoughts on this or other Hunley kits?

Barry

Interior Color

The Chapman painting shows the inside of the after hatch to have
been  painted a very light color, possibly white. I suspect that the
entire  interior of the boat would have been similarly painted, to maximize
 the effective illumination of what little light got in through the hatches and deadlights. However, that's speculative, and I'm not aware of any specific findings by the archaeologists one way or another on the matter....Andy Hall

The FOTH reported that the bench was painted white and the paint is
evident in some photos.  If I remember correctly, I asked Paul
Mardikian the question a couple of years ago at the Smithsonian and
at that time they had not found evidence of paint inside.  I also
remember one of the historical reports saying that one of the three
subs was painted while inside for the same reason Andy mentions.  For
my 3D modeling I've assumed that it was. Michael  (jvnautilus)

Do you think the Cottage 1/72 kit is suitable for conversion to Remote Control?  Does anyone know if someone is compiling accurate blueprints to be  released for model builders, including interior detail, etc?  - Jim

 Waaaaaaay too small for even micro RC equipment tmsmalley

 "Robert Allen" wrote:
 Does anyone know if someone is compiling accurate blueprints to be
 released for model builders, including interior detail, etc?

Until the Friends of the Hunley begin selling a set - we've been
waiting for years - try mine here: exterior only, available as a high-resolution GIF and a PDF.  I do have some changes coming up.  The latest information I've seen shows a porthole on each side of the aft hatch cowling. Michael 

http://home.att.net/~JVNautilus/Hunley/reconstruction.html#mid
 

Dear George:

 My name is Ray Arceneaux. After I finished High School in 1958 I went to work at the Lafayette Wood Works where we made cabinets, stair cases, and wall divides and other stuff.  Every thing that we made had to look factory made, then I went to work for an insurance company and retired there. 

I was always  wanting to make models but I was always put down on that idea.  I went  upstairs one day and started building the Hunley but quit for a long time.  One day I got an E-Mail from a guy on the Hunley and I told him almost everything I knew about it. I don't think anyone knows everything about the Hunley but he talked me into finishing the model.

I sent him a picture of the model and he couldn't believe of what he was looking at. I started thinking of the Monitor they had found and looked at pictures of it and started making it and now I'm almost finish with it. 

I'm sending you pictures of the Monitor step by step on how I did it and later on I'll send you pictures step by step on how I built the Hunley.  Now before I finish with the Monitor I'm thinking of making the Virginia. I guess I'm stuck on the Civil War.  The upstairs looks like a museum.   I'm building all of this from pictures and if I had the blue print I would probably try and build the real thing.  The models are the closest to the real thing that I will get.  The models look a lot more real then the pictures.  I carved the cannons the way they were described until you sent me a picture of the real cannons.  I came pretty close to the real thing.  I'm sending you a picture of my wife and I and my baby boy dog that died about a month ago so you can get an idea of what I look like and then later I'll send you a picture of me working on the Monitor.  If you need anything else let me know.  See you later.     Thank You for your help.   Your Friend,  The Louisiana Cajun Swamp Man
                                            Ray

     
    
C.S.S. Hunley,  approximately 5'feet long and  looks like the real thing

You can see the crank, the bench the crew was sitting on, the candle in the holder and the compass box. Let me know what you think of it.

  The Louisiana Cajun Swamp Man,        Ray Arceneaux

THE MONITOR MODEL



INBOARD PLAN FROM  1862

 

 

 

 


Subject: Hunley Models by Bill Thomas-Moore and Still Romancin' in Charleston!

 
Sunday, July 11
Hi George:
 
So glad to see you again last April 15 on the Carolina Belle. Wish we had more time to chat.
 
Our best sites have been in historic or totally state of the art theaters, including Coastal Carolina U., Georgetown Theater, and the Port Columbus Civil War & Naval Museum.
 
Anyway, wanted to touch base with you. Bill is under contract to build Hunley models for an Exhibit at a major attraction here in SC, and will also offer a limited edition of custom made models (3 ft. to scale/glass cases, mounted on mahogany bases) similar to the models you viewed on the Carolina Belle at our performance.
 
We want to offer a limited edition of Hunley models...up to date, state of the art, that is on your site if you wish to add it.
 
Please note that most models on websites are not of the Hunley, but of the Pioneer with the spar on top, not at the bottom, and they're usually not up to date in their details.
 
If you're interested in adding a "custom order" link and sharing with a percentage or other arrangement for the proceeds, let us know. It could be a huge bonanza, considering that the commission he's doing will go international through the other enterprise. We could still offer custom made models through your site. We're partial to you.
 
Hope all is well with you and your wife...and re-enactor friends. That was quite a week with the funeral...well done!!
 
Warmest regards,
Diane & Bill


BILL THOMAS MODELS


Scientists are now removing the leftover sediments in the bottom of the sub and studying whether to use traditional electrolysis, a technique known as cold plasma reduction or so-called supercritical fluids to remove the corrosive salts from the submarine.
 

Plasma Technology For Cold Cleanups

LOS ALAMOS USES INNOVATIVE PLASMA TECHNOLOGY TO TREAT AIR FORCE SITES

LOS ALAMOS, N.M., June 10, 1996 - Los Alamos National Laboratory scientists have successfully demonstrated at two Air Force bases a novel cleanup technology that efficiently destroys a number of organic contaminants and shows commercial promise.

The new system destroyed volatile organic compounds extracted from soil at McClellan Air Force Base, Calif., and from ground water at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., using a nonthermal plasma that creates highly reactive molecules called free radicals to break down the contaminants.

The plasma technology is likened to cold combustion; instead of using heat to break up contaminants, the plasma cells destroy molecules using highly reactive free radicals - atoms or molecules that have unpaired electrons.
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/1996-06/LANL-PTFC-100696.php
http://www.air-techinternational.com/Oaugdp.html

PRESS RELEASE
    For Immediate Release
 July 23, 2004

9) NEW DISCOVERIES INSIDE THE CONFEDERATE STATES SUBMARINE H L HUNLEY


Pump System Could Contain Important Clue to the Hunley's Disappearance

Though the H. L. Hunley has been emptied of sediment, scientists
continue archaeological work inside the submarine. The interior and exterior sections of the submarine are covered with a heavy layer of concretion, which masks internal mechanisms of the submarine and locks artifacts in place. The work of investigating these hidden layers is just beginning.

This summer, while scientists began working to remove the concretion and artifacts from the forward and aft crew compartments, they uncovered new operational details about the vessel that may provide an important clue as to why the Hunley vanished after becoming the world's first successful combat submarine.

Once a layer of the concretion was removed, an integral series of valves and pumps, connected by a pipe running from the forward to the aft ballast tank, was exposed. The configuration suggests that the submarine's pump system may have had a dual purpose. Scientists knew the pumps were used to control the water level in the ballast tanks, which enabled the submarine to rise or dive while in operation. The complexity of the pump system is leading scientists to believe it also served as a bilge system that would have allowed the crew to remove water from inside the submarine in the event of an emergency.

Depending on the valve setting and pump position, Hunley scientists may be able to tell if the crew was desperately trying to remove water from the crew compartment or trying to pump water out of the ballast tanks to gain buoyancy the night that it vanished on Feb. 17, 1864.

The remaining concretion still covers a majority of the pump system and has not been further removed because it protects the submarine from corrosion as it awaits conservation treatment.
 
Scientists are hopeful that once they can safely excavate and x-ray this key aspect of the submarine's internal pump mechanisms, it will allow us to know what the crew was doing in the last moments of their voyage.

 
The forward pump was next to Hunley commander Lt. Dixon's
station. While excavating in this area, many artifacts were found that  provided insight into his responsibilities on the submarine.

Excavation Manager Maria Jacobsen said, "We uncovered a mysterious concreted object that upon closer inspection turned out to be an intact oilcan, with oil in liquid form still within it."

A number of other artifacts were de-concreted from this section of the submarine, including a metal rod, a rectangular flat metal strap, fragment of rubber-impregnated canvas, an iron wedge, nut, and hammer. Previously a number of wrenches and bolts were found near the hammer, and scientists believe these items were once part of a tool bag, which deteriorated during the submarine's 136 years on the bottom of the ocean floor.

A section of a depth gauge was also discovered, which still had
mercury in it.
 
"Finding these tools by Lt. Dixon's station shows that he not only knew how to navigate the submarine, but had a deep understanding of how the submarine worked and was actively involved in the ongoing maintenance of his ship," said Warren Lasch, Chairman of Friends of the Hunley.

- An image has been provided to go along with this press release. To access, go to our website at www.hunley.org and proceed to the media center. The caption of the image is: Archaeologist Harry Pecorelli working around the ballast pipes, valves, and forward bulkhead. Kellen Correia (843) 722-2333 ext. 32                


 

Pump Valve Speculation

Here's a little speculation on the pump and tank-interconnect
valving.  I'm addressing only one pump, but I assume the same
arrangement would be used for both.  All valves would be accessible in the vicinity of the pump by one person.  I remember a historical report that one of the pumps became clogged and had to be opened and cleared.  If this is true the pump would need valves to isolate it from its input and output lines.  That means 2 valves, one on the input line and one on the output.  Now, considering the recent reports, the pump could input from both tanks and from the cabin floor.  It would probably be necessary to isolate the three sources. It would definitely be necessary to isolate the floor from the tank and it would be prudent to isolate the two tanks.  This translates to 3 input valves.  If, as mentioned in the report, water could be pumped from one tank to the other two output lines are necessary, one to the tank and one to the sea.  Both of these would need to be valved.  So I speculate 5 valves per pump if active pumping from tank to tank is possible and 4 per pump if not.

Any thoughts? Michael (
"jvnautilus" )
Bruce,
Alexander's diagram shows what appears to be a lever for raising and
lowering the tubes, similar in design to the one that controls the
diving planes. To raise the tubes, a crewman would push the lever
towards the stern. http://www.rogoff-darrow.net/Interests/Hunley/Diagrams/Alexander00.jpg

The design makes sense, but keep in mind that Alexander's diagrams
contain many errors such as showing the airbox as being positioned
halfway between the hatches.

Yes, it sure would be nice to know what the scientists found inside
the air box. I sure wish I could hang around the Lasch center and ask
questions. You listening George?
Barry
  I AM NOW!
!

” Michael wrote:  It might be  possible to determine the angle of the pipes by examination of the  rest of the snorkel mechanism inside the box on the hull plate.  We haven't seen a photo of that since they removed it.”
 
"hunley_bar" <bfk@b...> wrote: Putting on my design hat, I come up with the following requirements for the snorkel mechanism.

 1. Some device to block the inrush of water from the tubes when they
were in the lowered position and the sub below water.  It could be something as complicated as a valve working in concert with the position of the tubes or as simple as a large cork switched out with the hoses before they dove (poor idea).  The size of the air box implies (to me, anyway) there's enough room  high up in the hull to fit some type of valve mechanism for blocking water for times when the open ends of the tubs were under water.
2. A device would also be required to raise and lower the tubes. 
This device may have been be as simple as the captain opening the forward hatch and reaching behind the hatch cover to lift the tubes while they were still on the surface, or (my bet) a lever, located inside the air box, accessible from below, and possibly a part of a valve mechanism that BB could raise and lower at will.  If this is the case, then they (FOTH) already know if the tubes were in the up, down or an intermediate position.
 Bruce


 

10) DOES THE H L HUNLEY NEED TO GO TO MYRTLE BEACH?

Grand Strand developer to open $3M interactive exhibit in center of
tourist mecca


BY BRIAN HICKS
Of The Post and Courier Staff

Mount Pleasant Mayor Harry Hallman once said that if the H.L. Hunley
was going to make big money, it needed to go to
Myrtle Beach.

Now, it virtually is.

On Wednesday, the Grand Strand development giant Burroughs and Chapin
Co. announced plans to open the $3 million, 4,200-square-foot H.L.
Hunley Experience as part of its Broadway at the Beach entertainment
complex. The exhibit puts the Confederate sub front and center in the
heart of one of the country's biggest tourist meccas, telling its
story to 11.5 million tourists each year.

"The Hunley is first and foremost a technological marvel, conceived
of and built by Americans," said Egerton Burroughs, company chairman.

Officials with the Hunley project don't expect the new tourist
attraction to compete with the real Hunley's museum, set to open in
North Charleston within the decade. In fact, they hope this
attraction, which quite literally has the bow of a Hunley replica
jutting prominently from the Grand Strand skyline of gold pyramids,
giant crabs and oversized planets, will increase interest in the sub
and draw
Myrtle Beach visitors southward.

Sparking an interest in the history and science of the Hunley is the
idea, Burroughs and Chapin officials said. They say the Hunley
Experience -- the premiere attraction at the new Adventures in
Science, History and Nature building -- will be an interactive and
historically accurate depiction of the sub.

Visitors will be able to sit inside a mock-up of the Hunley's crew
compartment and crank a propeller through water, look through a
reproduction conning tower viewing port and get a feel for what it
took to operate the world's first successful attack submarine.

In all, the Hunley Experience will tell the story of the sub, from
the circumstances under which it was built through the science and
technology of its recovery and excavation.

"We want to immerse people in this exhibit," said Pat McBride of
Burroughs and Chapin. "We want to mix entertainment and education the
way Ripley's (Aquarium) has done so well. We want to teach people
about the technological achievements and times in which the Hunley
was created."

This new tourist attraction, set to open July 7, could be a financial
boon for the real Hunley's conservation. Under a licensing agreement,
Burroughs and Chapin will pay Friends of the Hunley $54,000 a year
plus 20 percent of gift shop proceeds. Warren Lasch, chairman of
Friends of the Hunley, said he hopes the group will see around
$250,000 annually as a result. The conservation of the sub costs more
than $1 million a year.

Lasch said the money from this joint venture is not the only boost
for the submarine. The exhibit will introduce new people to the
Hunley and let them know its conservation is an ongoing project even
though the sub's final crew was buried earlier this month.

"This will help us preserve the legacy and help us complete the
mission of conserving the Hunley," Lasch said. "We are just getting
started in this, but we think their attention to detail and vision
are great."

Burroughs and Chapin officials estimate that 500,000 of Broadway at
the Beach's 11.5 million annual visitors will go through the Hunley
Experience. In other words, they aren't worried about the exhibit
wastin' away next to Margaritaville, the Jimmy Buffett chain
restaurant also opening in July.

Tom Jones, Burroughs and Chapin's chief officer for sports,
recreation and entertainment, said the company is interested in the
Hunley because it is "a story worth telling.""It is of such
importance to our American history that the National Park Service and
the U.S. Naval Historical Center joined in its raising, citing the
need for its historical and archaeological preservation," Jones said.

Some details of the Hunley Experience are still being worked out as
Burroughs and Chapin rushes to open the exhibit by the height of
tourist season. The $1.4 million building is under construction as
the $1.6 million exhibit is being built offsite. Friends of the
Hunley officials hope to reach an agreement to display some artifacts
from the sub on a rotating basis, and they would like to offer a tour
bus to bring visitors to the
Warren Lasch Conservation Center in
North Charleston to see the actual sub.

Those details are yet to be worked out. Even the admission price,
which Jones said will be under $10, has not been set.

The Hunley Experience follows in the wake of a Titanic exhibition
that recently opened at Ripley's Aquarium, within sight of where the
Adventures in Science, History and Nature building is going up.

This project also firmly plants the story of the ill-fated privateer
in modern pop culture. In artist renderings, the bow of the Hunley
protrudes from the front of the building atop turbid seas. This
signage sits at the east end of the Broadway at the Beach complex,
across a man-made lake from Hard Rock Cafe and across the highway
from the NASCAR Cafe.

It's right in the middle of a busy town's busiest epicenter.

Officials said Wednesday that the Hunley exhibit has an open-ended
hold on the Adventures building but could some day be phased out if
interest in the submarine wanes.

Burroughs and Chapin officials aren't expecting that to happen
anytime soon.

 used with permission from the Post and Courier and Charleston.net


11) SELECTED EMAIL AND GUESTBOOK COMMENTS

 

realname: Robert C. Comins
username: rcomins@worldnet.att.net
city: Glenville
state: NY
country: USA
Remote Name: 12.76.142.243
Date: Monday June 21, 2004
Time: 04:16:11 AM
 

comments

As a relative of Ezra Chamberlain (Chamberlin) owner of the copper Union ID tag found on the Hunley, on his mothers side (Fanny Comins I am very interested in all the stories about the Hunley.

Dear Sir,
 
I am starting to research Lt. Geo. Dixon's pre-war history (genealogy).  I want to find his parents, where they were from, why they came to Mobile etc.  Do you know any diehard Dixon researchers who have started working on his family tree?  I'll be making trips to the archives and ordering what records that are available.  I'd like to contact anyone who is doing this type of research so I'm not wasting time retracing what sources they have already searched. 
It is believed that he may have been the son of, George W. and Lydia Dixon of Campbell Co. Ky.  George W. is thought to have been a riverboat pilot, and the family may have resided in Ohio for sometime.  However, for now this is all research speculation and not fact.
Let me know.
Thanks,
Erik McBroom  Reb Jeb <rebjeb16@yahoo.com>

realname: Barbara McCann
city: Palm Harbor
state: fl
country: USA
Remote Name: 152.163.252.102
Date: Thursday June 03, 2004
Time: 10:21:24 AM
 

comments

Someone sure put a lot of work into this website. Very interesting and we shall visit the Hunley in July 2004

realname: DAN PYATT
city: columbus
state: in
country: USA
Remote Name: 12.221.211.175
Date: Wednesday June 02, 2004
Time: 12:07:17 PM
 

comments

I have been a member of the friends of the Hunley for four years and just found your site. I can't believe how much more info your site gives for noting compared to their site I have had to pay for.

Dear Sir:
 
     My family and I traveled from Chattanooga, Tennessee for our vacation this past week.  One of the things that I most wanted to see was the CSS Hunley at the Naval Base.  We saw the sign on Interstate 26 to exit @ exit #216.  We didn't go until Tuesday and we found that the display was open only on Saturday and Sunday.  I do not know who is responsible for having the sub open for display during the week but I was very disappointed that you could only visit the display on the weekend.  Charleston has a very rich Civil War history, which I am sure that you are aware of.  This submarine is a curiosity to Civil War buffs like myself.  As long as the interest is here then I feel like the display should be open seven days a week.  If it can't be open for display at the Naval Base it should be moved to an area where it could be viewed everyday.  Also the sign on Interstate 26 -there should be a note below the exit sign to let peolpe know the sub is only open for visits on the weekend.
 
Thank you for your time,
 
Steve Smith    

realname: Stephen M. Longnecker
city: West Seneca
state: NY
country: USA
Remote Name: 199.33.173.1
Date: Wednesday June 30, 2004
Time: 02:51:29 PM
 

comments

A g-g uncle of mine had something to do with the building of this boat. He was from Shea's Battalion 4Th Texas Artillery. The National Archives has copies of muster cards and special orders sending several men from Port Lavaca Texas to Mobile and then on to Charleston. These cards also include one for Edgar Collins Singer and Dr. John Fretwell, inventors of a very sophisticated metal torpedo. It is possible that a Singer torpedo was on the end of the spar on the Hunley since I found special orders dispatching EC Singer and others to Charleston to work on "torpedoes". I am almost certain the National Archive papers describe the initial formation of the "Singer Secret Service Corps", a secret organization of Masons that were involved in the construction and initial crewing of H.L. Hunley before it was commandeered by the Army. If you care to read about these Texans go to http://www.rootsweb.com/~txcalhou/hunley.html

Originally To:   George@TheHunley.com
FirstName:       james clark
email:           clkjames@worldnet.att.net
City:            gray
State:           ga
Zip:             31032 1668
Date:            09 Jun 2004
Time:            14:51:32
message:
 
I am trying to find a list of names of the Hunley crew. 
I am looking for a Miller who may or may not be family. 
You may also call. Thanks

 

Dear George, My husband and I attended the Hunley Crew funeral and burial. We were not disappointed! The Confederate soldiers, sailors, bagpipers, drummers, widows in black mourning-all performed realistically. Everyone was polite and patient with Southern courtesy, including the thousands of spectators! Me being short could not see the speakers and I was wondering if there will be a video of the whole thing that we could order? I also left my camera with roll of pictures in "Bob and Bobbie's" car. Maybe they will see this and e-mail "Carol and Barb Stroupe" at barbarastroupe@comcast.net. Thank you George for everything you did to help get us involved! Barb

Could you Please see that Randy Burbage gets this. Thank You,  Bob Parker

    Sir, I had the Honor of standing guard with Steve Christmas 2002. My Girl friend and I came from Maryland, Burt made us feel as if we had known him all our lives.
When Sunday's tour was over and it was time to go home, we hugged, we cried, and Steve asked for a favor, he wanted one of my buttons, I was a Major General. He cut off one of my buttons and I cut off one of his. I had hoped to see him again but it was not to be. Last Friday I was at the C.S.A. Store in Charleston, and met a Gentleman who was a friend of  Steve Burt. I hold him how much all the Marylanders LOVED Steve! and to please let all his friends know that.
   As we left the store he came over to me and gave me a piece of black ribbon that was on the flag at Steve's funeral. I was speechless, brought to tears I couldn't respond properly but thanked him as best I could. God Bless Him.
   We attended the Hunley Funeral with the Maryland Division. I wore Steve's Button and tied the ribbon around it. I commanded the Maryland Div. Color Guard/S.C.V.
   When we arrived at the cemetery I was able to take pictures of the last casket being removed (8th man Joseph Ridgaway, Maryland) I am telling you Steve was there helping us carry the casket. See Picture.  It was Steve's way of letting us know that he was with us.    
    On behalf of the Maryland Division S.C.V.We would like to thank all of the people of South Carolina for making us feel so welcome.

                                        Confederately Yours,   Liz Groszer &  Bob Parker
 
                                                 Santa1861@aol.com

 

Dear George,
 
I was sorry to read about your brother Richard passing away. I can only imagine the emotional roller coaster you have been on recently. It must be really hard when you lose someone who has been such a large part of your life for so long. You are a special person and I know Richard will be waiting on you.
 
I hope the ceremonies and burial of the Hunley crew has kept you busy and helped to fill the emptiness for a while. I wish I could have made it down to Charleston to meet you and be a part of it all but I care for my son who had an accident in '96 and try not to get too far from home. Maybe I'll get down there one day to do some research and give you a holler.
 
Thanks for all the work you do to keep us Hunley fans informed. I don't know what we would do without you. You do a great job and they may have done you wrong but good always wins in the end.
 
Donna Walker