"Timing Will Be Every Thing" WHAT'S NEXT
Wednesday, January 17, 2001
By George W. Penington
The tank of clear water containing the recovered Confederate submarine H.L.
Hunley will be surrounded by divers and technicians and viewable by web cam.
The main lobby and display area will remain open during the recovery process at
the Warren Lasch Conservation Center at the former naval base, where the Hunley
is being preserved and studied.
This area which contains displays from the movie about The Hunley, as well as
gifts and memorabilia, will be re-arranged to accommodate two big screen
televisions connected to web cams. Visitors will be able to view live the
recovery process although not much is expected to happen the first week after
the closing on January 22, 2001. There will be an entrance charge of $5.00 to
view the live action and tour the displays.
The Hunley's interior will be exposed in the next several weeks and
it should prove to be very exciting.
Scanning devices have determined
the sub is 80 percent filled with silt - and it is expected that artifacts and
even human remains may be preserved.
Items inside may include canteens, pistols,
photographs, food and perhaps even the gold coin that sub commander Lt. George
Dixon is rumored to have carried.
Fiber optic probes showed the boat's rivets are tight, that no seams
have been broken and there are no separations anywhere in the half-inch-thick
iron plates that make up the hull.
There is a break in the vessel in the forward conning
tower. A theory that has gained momentum since the sub's recovery is that a
Union sailor's bullet fired in an attempt to repel the Hunley's attack shattered
a glass viewing port on the conning tower and let water cascade in.
Researchers will decide the best way to open up The
Hunley which will be a slow and tedious process. It will not happen over night
so it will be like rolling dice to be there on the best day .....D
Timing will be everything and I will try to keep everyone informed as to the
progress being made daily.
Check back often for updates. Thanks