by George W. Penington  -  Editor
March 14, 2004
    ISSUE  #50 

1) Welcome to the HUNLEY NEWSLETTER

Frequently Asked Questions - About the Hunley crew funeral
Hunley news - in Case You missed - WHERE TO PUT THE HUNLEY
8) "FINAL DEPARTURE" Another view of the last mission of the Hunley
9) True Southerner
a short list of Hunley questions

1) Welcome to the HUNLEY NEWSLETTER
Comment about my NEWSLETTERS..."The information on the historical events, the experts with their added
information, the interesting comments from people from all over the country reads like a Civil War
 "Southern Novel"! It is as exciting to read as "Gone With The Wind"! "

A special welcome to all the new subscribers. This newsletter is generally published now once
a month and sent out in text form with a link to the online addition available to subscribers
only. This will be the only letter this month because we are going back to html letters.

viewing the online edition with the pictures and graphics is also available.   We do not 'SPAM' 

This issue is dedicated to my brother Richard who just recently passed to his new life.  Richard
was a miracle child born with 'Down Syndrome' in 1947, had a mind of a five year old and
'the heart of a Giant.'  In a life time torn with prejudice and misunderstanding, he was able
to touch the hearts of thousands of people.  Although Not expected to live past the age of Nine, Richard
proved Science and Doctors are not always right.  He excelled in the "Special Olympics" and had a
sense of Humor that made us all roar.  Although his being in our lives was often a challenge from
growing up to adult hood - his impact is often un-explainable.. his love always un-conditional. We will miss
him desperately as we go on with our lives. 

New at the Hunley store

Framed print of Conrad Wise Chapman's painting of the Confederate Submarine  Hunley. 

The print is framed in 1and1/2 inch mahogany . The print measures 22" wide by 28" long framed.


Hunley Print Framed: Special Price: 159.99 plus S&H   ( Product # 1050)


2) PLUFF MUD SENT TO MOBILE in a casket?

'Sedimentary remains' of Hunley commander Dixon


By GEORGE WERNETH Staff Reporter

A casket containing "sedimentary remains" of Mobile's Lt. George E.
Dixon, commanding officer of the famous Civil War submarine H.L.
Hunley, will be displayed locally in late March, a spokesman for the
Sons of Confederate Veterans announced Thursday.

The announcement, though, generated some controversy about the actual
contents of the casket which will be here March 27 and March 28.
Kellen Correia, a spokeswoman for the Charleston, S.C.,-based Friends
of the Hunley, said Thursday no human remains will be in the casket.

"It's just sediment," she said, adding that she believes a news
release by Admiral Raphael Semmes Camp 11 of the SCV was "misleading"
in its use of the term "remains."

Correia said there will be a small amount of sediment in the casket
taken from the area where Dixon's remains were found after the
historic Confederate sub was raised off the coast of Charleston
during August 2000. She said the sediment in the casket will
be "about the size of a cremation box."

"His remains are staying in South Carolina and will be interred in
Charleston on April 17 with the full Hunley crew," Correia said.

The closed casket containing the sedimentary contents will be on
display in Blacksher Hall, 1056 Government St., from 1 to 6 p.m.,
Saturday, March 27, and Sunday, March 28, according to A.J. DuPree
Jr. of the local SCV camp.

DuPree said some local Confederate items will be displayed at the
casket visitation and admission will be free. He said items belonging
to Dixon which were found in the excavation of the Hunley will not be
brought to Mobile for the display.

DuPree said "partial remains" from the casket will be interred at
Magnolia Cemetery in Mobile on April 4 but said the casket will be
returned to Charleston for the April 17 burial of the eight-member
Hunley crew.

The SCV spokesman said Dixon's "Medal of Honor"-- a medal the
national SCV posthumously awarded to each of the eight Confederate
crew members in 2000 at its annual reunion in Charleston -- will be
displayed with the casket.

The casket display at Mobile is being sponsored by the SCV's Admiral
Raphael Semmes Camp.

Dixon commanded the Mobile-built Hunley when it became the first
submarine to sink an enemy ship in war on Feb. 17, 1864. After
sinking the Union warship Housatonic, the Hunley itself sank to the
bottom of the ocean, taking with it the eight crew members

After the Hunley was recovered, the crew's remains were removed along
with artifacts and are stored at the Warren Lasch Conservation Center
in the Charleston area, where the Hunley Commission has been working
to preserve them.

Among the items recovered was a dented $20 gold coin known to have
been carried by Dixon as a good luck piece. The coin was a memento
from his sweetheart, Queenie Bennett of Mobile. The coin -- which
saved Dixon's life at the Battle of Shiloh -- was bent by a Union

3) Frequently Asked Questions - About the Hunley crew funeral


For more information about events the week of the Hunley crew burial,
visit these two Web sites: and


4) Hunley news - in Case You missed - it  "WHERE TO PUT THE HUNLEY?"   (reprinted with permission from the Post and Courier and


Of The Post and Courier Staff

North Charleston officials say they know about how much money it's
going to cost to build the Hunley museum. They know about when they
might be ready to break ground. They say they have a lot of details
worked out, except exactly where to put the Confederate submarine.

That key detail and others will be the focus of a discussion at 5:30
p.m. today at City Hall when Mayor Keith Summey and City Council have
their first chat about the future museum since the state Hunley
Commission voted to send the sub to North Charleston. No action is
expected during the monthly Finance Committee meeting.

Summey, who said the commission likes the idea of locating the $40
million museum at the old Officers' Club at the former Charleston
Naval Base, said he thinks the best place for it might be just north
of there, on the opposite bank of Noisette Creek.

That's the spot the city originally proposed. Engineering studies,
Summey said, probably will show the ground is more solid than at the
Officers' Club, which was built on filled marshland. "We also have to
look at the logistics of parking and how you get access, things of
that nature."

Engineering and preliminary design studies for the 40,000-square-foot
museum could start next year. It's a process Summey expects to take
about a year, with construction taking about two years.

The city will pay for the design work out of the $13 million North
Charleston has committed to the project, Summey said. About $10
million of that will come from a tax increment financing district set
up at the base.

Another $2 million is expected to come from the roughly $9 million
sale of the former Charleston Naval Shipyard to ship repair company
CMMC, and $1 million more from the general fund. The city also has
pledged to pay an additional $50,000 a year to the Warren Lasch
Conservation Lab, where the sub is being excavated.

The remaining $27 million, Summey said, is expected to come from
private donations, federal grants and possibly the state.

Now that the city appears set to get the sub -- all that remains is
approval of the Legislature -- the financial reality has begun to set
in for some city leaders, who say they are excited about the prestige
the Civil War relic will bring but are nervous about the cost.

"You try to look out for the city's future and the quality of life,
but then you have to look after the taxpayers' money," said
Councilwoman Phoebe Miller.

North Charleston is beefing up its signs to the conservation lab.
Public Works Director Michael Hendrick said the city plans to install
about 10 new signs to improve access off Interstates 26 and 526. The
new signs will follow the state's brown-and-white color scheme.



----- Original Message -----
From: "Robert Geist"
To: "George W. Penington"
Sent: Thursday, February 19, 2004 7:27 PM
Subject: Re: Helms - Hunley


 Like apologies for my slow response!  Computer science is busy
 these days ...
 Our principal interest is producing a "virtual Hunley" that
 can be explored and even piloted by users wearing head-mounted
 displays and sitting in chairs that are powered by compressed
 air.  We want the images as nearly photo-realistic as possible.
 We have the technology to do that, but we lack a good interior
 scan as yet.  I'm hoping he'll invite us back soon and we can
 get the interior data (in electronic form).

 On Mon, 16 Feb 2004, George W. Penington wrote:
 Hello Robert...thanks for getting back to me and sorry it has taken so long
 to reply - We are very interested in your work and would like to see and
 hear more of it. Would you be interested also in joining our online
 discussion group called the CSS H L HUNLEY CLUB
 As webmaster and editor of the try to archive articles and
 sites of interest, but only have screen shots of your other work.  Looking
 forward to hearing from you.  George W. Penington
 ----- Original Message -----
 From: "Robert Geist" <>
 To: <>
 Sent: Tuesday, January 27, 2004 12:45 PM
 Subject: Helms - Hunley
I was the one who started the "virtual Hunley" here
at Clemson; Robert Helms was working for me when he
put that web site together.  He's graduated and working
in Hollywood now (special effects industry).  I have
other students who have nice virtual models, but
we haven't made much progress of late.  Harry Pecorelli
has always been absolutely delightful to work with, but
he just hasn't had time to deal with us of late.

Apparently, there was to be another full scanning, and
 I sent a student down there to participate, but the
 scanners ran out of time.  We've been waiting to hear
 about a re-schedule.

 Anyway, we're happy to participate, and we'd like to
 supply our virtual models to whomever would like to use
 them.  We can schedule a meeting here or in Charleston
 as needed.


 Robert Geist, Professor
 Department of Computer Science
 Clemson University
 Clemson, SC 29634-0974
 ph: 864-656-2258; fax: 864-656-0145


----- Original Message -----
Sent: Tuesday, February 24, 2004 12:10 PM
Subject: Crewman C. F. Simpkins


 I have been working on my family tree and have Simpkins in my family line.
 My great great grandfather Ephraim Simpkins was a member of the 31st
 Regiment, North Carolina Infantry.  He was from Craven County, North Carolina.  This
 group was stationed at Roanoke Island, NC and was captured in February 1862. 
 After they were exchanged, they were assigned to General Clingman's Brigade and
 remained under his command for the duration of the war.  The 31st fought at
 White Hall and then moved to the Charleston area and fought in various
 Do you know where Crewman C. F. Simpkins was from or anything about his
 family roots?  I would love to be able to link my Simpkins family line to this crew
 I saw the Hunley the summer of 2002 when the Horseless Carriage Assoc. made a
 stop there during their Charleston tour.  It was a wonderful tour.
 Thanks for any information you might have on Mr. Simpkins.
 Judy Nobles Lewis


----- Original Message -----
From: "Charles W. Munro" <>
To: "George W. Penington" <>
Sent: Wednesday, March 03, 2004 2:21 PM
Subject: Re: Torpedoes of the Civil War era


 Mr. Penington,
 I just received a notice from the Civil War Lodge of Research that there,
 indeed, will be a service for Lt. George E. Dixon.  I think I told you that
 it was on April 19th but that is wrong. It is scheduled for the morning of
 April 17th at Charleston's Magnolia Cemetery. The expected crowd will be
 over 50,000 people and they say that every hotel and motel in the immediate
 area is already filled to capacity.  The interment is scheduled to start at
 1:30 P.M.  Following that, there is a Masonic Lodge scheduled to meet at
 Hammerton Lodge #332, North Charleston, which will have a lot of
 re-enactment members present from the Civil War Lodge of Research # 1865 of
 They say that this will continue on into the late afternoon and evening and
 that more information will be furnished at a later time.  The Civil War
 Lodge of Research, and the South Carolina Research Lodge will jointly host
 this affair.
 I am a member of both of these bodies, so if you need any information from
 either one, please use my name.  This event most certainly will be of
 interest to those of the Hunley Club.  Should you need any phone numbers or
 addresses of these gentlemen, I'd be happy to find and submit those to you.
 Mr. Wayne Sirmon of Mobile Alabama will be the person who will be
 delivering that ceremony at the grave site for Lt. Dixon.
 Charles W. Munro

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Tuesday, March 02, 2004 7:46 AM
Subject: Misspelling on Hunley Website

I thought you'd like to know that you have Sumter (as in Fort Sumter) misspelled in the first grouping of links on this webpage. Even though when speaking the word "Sumter", it may sound like it contains a "p", it doesn't.
You ain't from around here are ya?

realname: Joseph L. Akin
city: Hamilton state: Ga.
Date: Thursday February 26, 2004

Several members of the Echols Guard S.C.V would like to join in the Burial Ceremony of the Hunley Crew
can you send me some information.
My son and I have been re-enactors for several years and would consider it an Honor to help.
You're faithful servant Joseph Akin

Hello Joseph....Thanks for writing...The best place to get information other than my newsletter
Stay in touch and the best of luck to you. 
George W. Penington  Webmaster and Editor of The  Newsletter 
----- Original Message -----
From: David Fry 2
Sent: Saturday, February 28, 2004 1:22 PM
Subject: The Hunley

I am an avid Civil War buff and I am so looking forward to attending the ceremony on April 17, 2004.  I am a professional photographer as well.  Could you direct me in finding the person who I would contact in obtaining credentials to cover the event.  I am more than willing to give copies of everything I shoot to the organizations at no charge.  I would consider it an honor and a pleasure if you could again, point me in the right direction.  Thank you so much for your time.
Donna Sullivan

Hello Donna , Try  or writing  I wish you great luck and send me some pictures for the Newsletter, if you would like to have them published.  George W. Penington  Webmaster and Editor of the Newsletter

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Sunday, February 22, 2004 6:36 PM
Subject: Material Permission and Questions

Dear George
Is it alright if I use some of your illustrations (particularly the side view that you use as a logo) for an article I am writing?
YES, you are welcome to use all the research and articles on my site.  The newsletters are probably the most up to date.    Although I won't be directly quoting text, I am happy to acknowledge your fascinating website as one of my principal sources. THANKS
The article (about 3500 words long) will hopefully be in the newsletter of a model shipwrights society that I belong to, in Bromley, near London, England. I've become a bit of a Hunley freak recently and I thought the lads would be interested also. I won't be paid for this, but if its well received I may tout it round the shipping magazines over here, though they usually say they don't accept unsolicited material.
Two Questions:
1) Who, what or where is "Housatonic", that the ship was named after? Sorry if this is obvious to Americans, but it has us guessing this side of the pond. I found "Canandaigua" in my atlas, in New York State.
Housatonic was built new.
2) How much weight do we give to accounts from just after the Civil War, that the Hunley was found trapped in the wreck of the Housatonic, rather than 650 feet away as she was eventually found? Was this just sensational journalism? It is quoted as true in Admiral Porter's 1877 article on torpedoes. If true, it would surely imply that the Hunley was incapacitated by the explosion. Could she then have moved over the years, either dragged by a ships anchor, moved gradually by the tide, or swept there in a storm (which in such shallow water would have an effect on the sea bottom)?
That was a pretty far fetched theory..enclosed is where it originated.
The locations of the Hunley and the Housatonic are well established. They did not move over the years.
Yours Sincerely
Adrian Roberts

Sorry it took so long to get back to you.  You are welcome to use what you need from website.  George W. Penington  Webmaster and Editor of The 

"The first Canandaigua , a screw sloop, was launched 28 March 1862 by Boston Navy Yard, and commissioned 1 August 1862, Commander J. F. Green in command.

Canandaigua reported to the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron off Charleston, S.C., 26 August 1862, adding to the power to isolate the Confederacy from overseas supplies, one of the Navy's several decisive contributions to Union victory. Off Charleston on 15 May 1863 Canandaigua took the sloop Secesh; later she destroyed another blockade runner, and aided in the capture of a schooner and a steamer in the same area.

In addition to blockading, Canandaigua cooperated with Army forces taking part in the long series of attacks on positions in Charleston harbor during 1863 and 1864 On 17 February 1864 she rescued 150 of the crew of Housatonic when that ship fell victim to the historic attack of the Confederate submarine H. L. Hunley.

Canandaigua sailed for the Boston Navy Yard 26 March 1865, and was decommissioned there
 8 April 1865. Re-commissioned 22 November 1865, Canandaigua cruised on the European station until February 1869, when she began 3 years of repairs at New York Navy Yard. She was renamed Detroit 15 May 1869, but returned to her original name 10 August 1869.

Her last cruise, 1872-1875, was in the West Indies and Gulf of Mexico with the North Atlantic Station's detachment there. Out of commission at Norfolk Navy Yard after 8 November 1875, she remained in ordinary until broken up in 1884."



Acquisition.-- Built by Government contract; hull at Boston Navy Yard; machinery, by Globe Works (Jabez Coney et al.), Boston, Mass. Launched, November 20, 1861, at Boston, Mass.

Cost.--$231,526.71. Description.--Screw steamer; sloop-of-war. Tonnage.--1,240. Dimensions.--Length, 207'; beam, 38'; depth, 16' 10". Draft.--Loaded, forward, 7' 7"; aft, 9' 7". Engines.--Two; horizontal, direct action. Diameter of cylinder, 42"; stroke, 30"; 1 Sewell's surface condenser. Boilers.--Two main; one auxiliary; all Martin's tubular patent. Battery.--September 2, 1862, 1 100-pdr. Parrott rifle, 3 30-pdr. Parrott rifles, 1 XI-inch Dahlgren S. B., 2 32-pdr. 33 cwt., 2 24-pdr. howitzers, 1 12-pdr. howitzer, 1 12-pdr. rifle; April 30, 1863, add 2 32,-pdrs. 33 cwt.; June 2, 1863, remove howitzers; Nov. 27, 1863, similar to that of April 80, 1863.

Disposition.--Sunk, February 17, 1864, outside bar of Charleston, S.C., by Confederate torpedo boat. 

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, February 26, 2004 6:06 PM
Subject: Re: Material Permission and Questions

Thank you for your information and links. Your view seems to be definitive. I will amend my article accordingly.
Adrian Roberts
Definitive is a little strong...but thanks,
ps: When I eat crow...I like it well done.  George

----- Original Message ----- From: <>
To: <>
Sent: Thursday, February 26, 2004 11:11 AM
Subject: Dixon's Watch

       I am interested in searching for a copy of Dixon's watch like a few
 people did with the Latern. But the pictures and info provided so far is
 not detailed enough for me to know what the watch really looked like. Has
 there been any new research and new closeup, detailed photos of the watch?
 Has anyone else already found a copy? I know that there is a serial number
 and additional engravings, but they are not published. Where can I get
that  info?  When I visited the Hunley in December I really wasn't thinking
about  doing this so I did not even pay attention to the watch. I don't remember
 if it was on display, but as they did not let us take pictures it would
not  have helped anyway.  I was in shock to just be able to view the Hunley and
 the artifacts that I was not able to really take it all in. I wish I could
 go back time and again, but as I live in California I probably will never
 get another chance to visit the museum.
   What I really need is to be able to talk to somebody who has or can
 handle the watch and answer question and who could also take good closeup
 pictures of the watch.  Could you advise me as to who I need to contact to
 do that.   There are a lot of civil war Hunter case pocket watches around and as
 most of them were indivially engraved on the exterior it might seem
 impossible to find a match. But what I believe I could do is find an exact
 plain match and have it engraved to match Dixons watch. And if I was
 sucessfull in doing that I would also want to match the chain and fob.

 Keep up the good work, I really enjoy the newsletter, and Thanks,

 Kim Martelle

Hello Kim...Thanks for writing.  Here are three quick links I found about
the watch, hope they help.  As far as talking to someone at the lab, you can
try writing to and address your enquiries to Paul Mardikian
who is handling the artifacts and is mentioned in some of my articles.  If I
come up with anything else I will let you know.  Great luck and keep me
informed of your progress.  George W. Penington   Webmaster and Editor of
the Newsletter.'s%20watch%20preview.htm

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, February 20, 2004 12:49 PM
Subject: [CSS H L HUNLEY] Re: Cook Photo Investigation


The mystery deepens!

I just borrowed via inter library loan - a copy of the Chapman
Some of the dates we have been taking for granted as far as the
painting goes may be off as well...

More as I read into it!

--- In, jvnautilus <no_reply@y...> wrote:
 I'm afraid I'm no closer to answering questions about the alleged  Cook photo than several
months ago when we last discussed it here. 
 Here's what I have determined:
 The Naval Institute does not have a copy in their photo archives.
 Although the Naval Institute is currently without a librarian, a
 volunteer check of each of the eight Proceedings articles that
Ragan  cited in his bibliography indicates that none includes the photo.
 My attempt to contact Ragan about the photo or his source was not
 I was thinking that the poor quality of the photo resulted because
 the image in the book was made from a graphic in a published
 article.  If this is true it apparently was not published in
 Proceedings.  Perhaps it was from another bibliography item.



 7) FROM THE GUEST BOOK - as exciting to read as "Gone With The Wind"!

realname: Barbara
city: Monroe
state: MI
country: USA
Date: Wednesday February 18, 2004
Time: 02:01:30 PM


Thank you for this wonderful web site and the Hunley Newsletter I've been happily receiving!
I print out every newsletter on my printer and read it while having a cup of coffee on my sun porch.
This is my first comment. The information on the historical events, the experts with their added
information, the interesting comments from people from all over the country reads like a Civil War
 "Southern Novel"! It is as exciting to read as "Gone With The Wind"! As a displaced Southerner,
I still get homesick for the South. My husband and I will be in Charleston for the Hunley crew's funeral.
Thanks for everyone who organized and helped put together this great and historical event!

realname: Gordon Teetor
city: High Point
state: NC
country: USA
Date: Wednesday February 18, 2004
Time: 06:47:26 PM


I have followed the Hunley news and reports since it was first discovered.
I visited the Hunley site last summer and plan to visit again in April,
when we come down for the crew burial. I am a member of the 27th NC Troops , and we shoot competitively
with Civil War weapons, including canon and mortar, with the North-South
Skirmish Assoc. I have been doing this since 1968 and hope to keep it up as
long as possible. Keep up the good work , God Bless the crew members and
your crew for taking care of them. Gordon

realname: Steven L. Burley
city: DeLand
state: FL
country: USA
Date: Thursday February 19, 2004
Time: 10:22:35 AM


Sir/Madam I am delighted to see the plans for the dignified interment of the remains of the last Hunley crew.
Setting aside politics and revisionist historians, these brave men made the ultimate sacrifice for their country
and should be treated with dignity and the deepest respect in this "voyage" to their final resting place. As a
direct descendent of CSN Master Bennett Gordon Burley, a hero of the Confederate Navy, I would be
honored to attend the funeral service in recognition of these men who "gave all" for what they believed.
 Respectfully Submitted, Steven L. Burley

realname: r.e brender a brandis
city: oldenzaal
country: netherlands
Date: Friday February 20, 2004
Time: 01:57:30 PM


finaly, those brave men, brought home.

realname: andrea
city: lake charles
state: la.
country: USA
Date: Saturday February 21, 2004
Time: 09:01:45 AM


Thanks for the website. I can't wait to travel and see the Hunley!

realname: MTC(SS) John W. (Jack) Oberkirch
city: Memphis
state: TN
country: USA
Date: Monday February 23, 2004
Time: 07:04:34 AM


I am a Navy Submariner and Missile Technician. I was born in Mobile AL.
I am related to Charles McHugh. My contact information is listed above. I look forward to hearing from you.

realname: Wayne Jowers
city: Columbia
state: SC
country: USA
Date: Monday February 23, 2004
Time: 09:39:46 PM


This is fascinating material. I heard a Gallery Talk by Glen McConnell at the
Confederate Relic Room in Columbia last year which was an excellent presentation.
I hope to attend the Hunley Crew's Funeral in April.

realname: Jessica Sutton
city: Simpsonville
state: SC
country: USA
Date: Tuesday February 24, 2004
Time: 07:33:43 AM


The Hunley is the most interesting piece of history. I've studied it for a while now, and I want to
know everything about it. I saw the Hunley this summer. Because of my experiences,
it has made me decide on my major... Marine Archaeology. Everyone should have an experience
like this. I recommend it to everyone.

realname: Terri H. Davis
city: Charleston
state: SC
country: USA
Date: Tuesday February 24, 2004
Time: 09:09:21 AM


I am honored to have been living during such a discovery in our history. I will be in
attendance of the Funeral Procession along with my family to pay respects to the
crew as they are laid to rest. Sincerely, Terri H. Davis

realname: Jim Loughran
city: Poughkeepsie
state: NY
country: USA
Date: Tuesday February 24, 2004
Time: 10:01:18 AM


As a Union re-enactor I appreciate anything to do with the Civil War, North or South. I think the discovery and recovery of the Hunley is the most exciting thing to ever happen in association with this war.

realname: William L Keys
city: Richfield
state: Oh
country: USA
Date: Wednesday February 25, 2004
Time: 09:11:51 AM


God Bless the men of the Hunley.

realname: Drew Page
city: Athens
state: GA
country: USA
Date: Wednesday February 25, 2004
Time: 10:54:35 AM


Excellent web site and event. My wife and I plan to attend.

realname: John (Jack) Molnar
city: Bel Air
state: MD
country: USA
Date: Thursday February 26, 2004
Time: 09:25:31 AM


Interest sparked by Clive Cussler's book "The Sea Hunters II".

realname: Dennis Connor
city: Poway
state: CA
country: USA
Date: Thursday February 26, 2004
Time: 12:48:16 PM


GREAT site... Very informative.. THANKS!!

realname: Joseph L. Akin
city: Hamilton
state: Ga.
country: USA
Date: Thursday February 26, 2004
Time: 01:59:30 PM


Several members of the Echols Guard S.C.V would like to join in the Burial Ceremony of the Hunley Crew can you send me some information. My son and I have been re-enactors for several years and would consider it an Honor to help. You're faithful servant Joseph Akin

realname: Charles W. Munro
city: Flint
state: TX
country: USA
Remote Name:
Date: Friday February 27, 2004
Time: 08:30:09 PM


I am particularly interested in this topic as I have written several articles on both of the persons who were actively participants and manufacturers of the torpedoes. Those men were Dr. John R. Fretwell and Edwin C. Singer, both from Port Lavaca, Texas. Both were involved in Mobile, Alabama, not only in the manufacture of the torpedoes, which were placed in Mobile Bay, but both participated in the building of the Hunley.

realname: Danny Adkins
city: Hurt
state: Va
country: USA
Date: Saturday February 28, 2004
Time: 10:05:09 AM


I really like the sight and the information. My son and I were doing a school paper for him and we found out a lot of information. My great great grand farther was in the civil war and fought with the First Va. Infantry his name was Isaac Keese.

realname: donna
city: albany
state: ny
country: USA
Date: Saturday February 28, 2004
Time: 10:18:25 AM


I am so looking forward to the ceremony honoring these fine men. I am also looking forward to partaking in a part of history. It is long overdue and I am thrilled to be a part of it.

realname: kenderick
city: ash
state: nc
country: USA
Date: Monday March 01, 2004
Time: 11:51:50 AM


i like the page it has nice stuff and information i need for my project

realname: Don Moschella
city: Hayward
state: ca
country: USA
Date: Tuesday March 02, 2004
Time: 01:15:49 PM


I am a Junior High teacher at a private Christian school, currently discussing the Civil War period.
Personally interested in famous battles and war material used by North and South.

realname: Kristopher L. Hunley
city: Clarksburg
state: TN
country: USA
Date: Tuesday March 02, 2004
Time: 03:49:24 PM


I am 17 years old and i am a Hunley and i would really love to find out more about H.L. Hunley
please e-mail me if you can

realname: Tom
city: Southern Pines
state: NC
country: USA
Date: Wednesday March 03, 2004
Time: 05:54:59 AM


we will be in Charleston April 17 to honor our Confederate heroes


realname: Vanessa
city: Newport News
state: Va
country: USA
Date: Thursday March 04, 2004
Time: 09:31:04 AM


Hi. Does anyone know the name of the girl from Canada who commissioned The Hunley1????
I would be happy to have any info. Thank you!

realname: LON F. ANDREW
state: VA
country: USA
Date: Saturday March 06, 2004
Time: 08:52:22 AM



realname: Mike Villarreal
city: Chesapeake
state: VA
country: USA
Date: Sunday March 07, 2004
Time: 07:28:12 AM


Just prior to my retirement from the Navy (after 36 1/2 years service), my wife and I visited the HUNLEY
 at the Lasch complex at Charleston Naval Base in 2002. It was very enjoyable and informative. More
 importantly, the visit reinforced our deep appreciation for what those brave HUNLEY men accomplished.
 I also thoroughly enjoyed reading various articles of your website. Unfortunately, many in our great nation
refuse to understand or appreciate the significance of the War Between The States and the HUNLEY's major
highlight in history. On the subject of Confederate Flags -- Here's the primary fact of the matter; those
flags are important symbols of American History, just as all the other historical flags of our great nation,
dating from the Exploration eras, Colonial Period, the early U.S. Confederation, under the Constitution,
 throughout the 19th and 20th Centuries, etc., to our present day. We should all also bear in mind that
over 300,000 AMERICANS (not just traitors, rebels, etc.), including an undetermined number of
African-Americans, died fighting for the Confederacy. Anyone can see that the figure "300,000" is
 not a small insignificant number. If anyone doesn't understand that, then it falls into their personal
problem category. Thank you.

realname: ERIC TYACK
city: MILES 4415
state: QLD
country: AUSTRALIA
Date: Monday March 08, 2004
Time: 01:58:55 AM



realname: W.D. Messamore
city: Knoxville
state: TN.
country: USA
Date: Tuesday March 09, 2004
Time: 08:15:32 AM


Sons of Confederates Veterans will be in Charleston,South Carolina on April 17th,2004 to
 represent our Heritage and to Honor the Memory of the soldiers/sailors of the Crew of the
 C.S.S. Hunley:Lt.George E. Dixon,C.S.A.,Corporal C.F. Carlson,C.S.A., James A. Wicks,C.S.N.,
 Arnold Becker,C.S.N., Fred Collins,C.S.N. aka Seaman Frank J.Collins,
C.F. Simpkins,C.S.N.,Joseph Ridgeway,C.S.N.,and Mr.White,Mr.Miller,
or Mr.James Hayes. We Will Remember Them! DEO VINDICE

realname: Phil Wareing
city: 's-Hertogenbosch
country: Holland
Date: Wednesday March 10, 2004
Time: 11:07:51 AM


Yesterday I saw the documentary on Nation Geographic t.v. It was fascinating! I would like to learn more.

realname: barbara
city: westville
state: nj
country: USA
Date: Thursday March 11, 2004
Time: 09:54:42 AM


great web site looking forward to visiting and touring the Hunley soon

realname: vince
city: augusta
state: GA
country: USA
Date: Thursday March 11, 2004
Time: 08:18:51 PM


I am an active member of the SCV(E Porter Alexander Camp 158)and just wanted to say i love your site!!

realname: chrissy
city: murrells inlet
state: sc
country: USA
Date: Friday March 12, 2004
Time: 06:18:47 AM


I've been a Civil War buff for many years. When they raised the Hunley I wanted to learn more
about the submarine, the people and it's history. I have just recently moved to South Carolina
and I'm not far from Charleston. I look forward to exploring the area and it's rich history.


I am happy to see that the submariners of this submarine will finally be on their Eternal Patrol


----- Original Message -----
Sent: Wednesday, February 18, 2004 11:55 AM
Subject: Final Departure
 I am the artist who painted (4) years ago "Final Departure". Please visit, and check for your self similarity of the two paintings, my and Mort Kunstler (even the title is similar) "The Final Mission". SUPRIS, SUPRIS!!
Marek Sarba
 Thanks for writing.  My opinion is that your rendition is much more realistic and accurate.  I lived and grew up on the Islands where the Hunley made her "Last Departure"  and you have shown the feel of the back water of Sullivan's Island, the weather, the participants, down to the creek and the lay of the sub as she waits.  You must of done your homework.  With your permission, I would like to include an article about this in my next newsletter.  My final comment is "hmmmm"   George W. Penington  Webmaster and Editor of The newsletter.




10) True Southerner

Hey y'all (that's plural) Cheryl Van sent me this. It is right on the mark ....Bob S.


Only a true Southerner knows the difference between a hissie fit and a conniption, and that you "PITCH" one,...and you "HAVE" the other.

Only a true Southerner knows how many fish, collard greens, turnip greens, peas, beans, etc. make up "a mess".

Only a true Southerner can show or point out to you the general direction of "yonder"

Only a true Southerner knows exactly how long "directly" is - as in: "going to town, be back directly."

All true Southerners, even babies, know that "Gimmie some sugar" is not a request for the white,  sweet substance that sits in a bowl on the table.

All true Southerners know exactly when "by and by" is.  They might not use the term, but they know the concept well.

Only a true Southerner knows instinctively that the best gesture of solace for a neighbor who's got trouble is a plate of hot fried chicken and a big bowl of cold potato salad..if the neighbor's trouble is a real crisis, they also know to add a large banana puddin'.

Only true Southerners grow up knowing the difference between "right near" and "a right far piece".  They also know that "just down the road" can be 1 mile or 20.

No true Southerner would ever assume that the car with the flashing turn signal is actually going to make a turn.

A true Southerner knows that "fixin" can be used as a noun, a verb, or an adverb.

Only a true Southerner knows that the term "booger" can be a resident of the nose, a descriptive - as in "that ol' booger", a first name or something that jumps out at you in the dark and scares you senseless.

Only true Southerners make friends while standing in lines.  We don't do "queues", we do "lines", and when we're "in line", we talk to everybody.

Put 100 true Southerners in a room and half of them will discover they're related, even if only by marriage.

True Southerners never refer to one person as "y'all".

True Southerners know grits come from corn and how to eat them.

Every true Southerner knows tomatoes with eggs, bacon, grits and coffee are perfectly wonderful;that redeye gravy is also a breakfast food; and that fried green tomatoes are not a breakfast food.

When you hear someone say: "Well, I caught myself lookin'..." you know you are in the presence of a genuine Southerner.

Only true Southerners say "sweet tea" and "sweet milk".  Sweet tea indicates the need for sugar and lots of it - we do not like our tea unsweetened.  "Sweet milk" means you don't want buttermilk.

A true Southerner knows that if you are with a couple of friends, you could be with 2 or 10.  The number doesn't matter.

And a true Southerner knows you don't scream obscenities at little old ladies who drive 30 MPH on the freeway.  You just say, "Bless her heart" and go your own way.


11) a short list of Hunley questions

 a short list of Hunley questions - "Tim Smalley"  09 Mar 2004
What don't we know FOR SURE?
The basic categories might be -
I. The Boat itself ,II. The Loss, III.  The Crew

I. The Boat itself

A. Torpedo configuration
1. How much powder -
   a. I have seen 90
   b. 130 lbs - 135 lbs. mentioned.
According to Mike (the torpedo man) Kochan, the likely size and weight is 135 lbs. GWP

2. What shape and how was it mounted to the spar?
3. What did the barb look like?
4. Was any evidence of torpedo lanyard spool mounting found?
"There was mention in a press report way back when the sub was first
opened of finding something that might be associated with the spool
on one of the plates or just below it.  This was never mentioned
again and my guess is there was no correlation."

B. Spar configuration - Where do we begin on this one?

copyright Bruce F. Kinsey <>

C. Manholes -
1. Forward portholes - shape and size.
"Interestingly, Kunstler's painting shows round forward portholes.  I
think they were round too, and I hope he got his information from the
Friends and not from one of our reconstructions." 
2. Were both manholes exactly the same.
Nope.  The side portholes are lower on the forward cowling.  It's not
clear if there are portholes on both sides of the aft cowling.  Some
drawings show only one, but some recent drawings show two, including
one in Kunstler's progress archive.  He shows two." 


By "were the towers identical" I wasn't thinking about the portholes. I meant are they shaped exactly the same? I would think that the same casting mold for the hatches would be used for both so even though in some images the fore tower looks "rounder" than the after - I suspect they are the same.  
I noticed the forward portholes in the "Final Mission" were round too - I hope he was given access to the "inside" scoop on the details of the boat - even though we can all see problems with how he chose to render it. Same with the deadlight in the after hatch. Did he just assume there was one or did he get to see the X-rays? "Tim Smalley"

3. How did hatches latch?
4. Were the hatches found latched? (I think Michael said Maria
mentioned that they were...)
"Maria reported the aft hatch was latched and that the latch
essentially prevent putting your head into the cowling.  She said the
forward hatch was unlatched, repeated by Paul Mardikian in the
Scientific Frontiers video.  There is no report that the latches are
the same or different." 
5. Where did the glass from the knocked out forward porthole go (I
don't think it has been found has it?)
6. Was there a sight glass looking upwards in the stern hatch?
Kunstler's archive has a nice drawing of the deadeye in the forward
hatch.  His painting places one similarly in the aft hatch.  Can we
trust it?"

D. Air box and snorkel
1. Was air system in use during last mission?
2. Was there a crewman stationed at the bellows? (Wasn't a body found
floating above it?)
3. If it wasn't in use, why not remove it?
The number of crew matches the number of crank positions.  It's
possible the procedure was to operate the bellows periodically.  I
recall a press report that the bellows wasn't used, but this could
have been speculation." 

E. Bench -
1. Was it or was it not angled slightly down to force crew into
leaning into the center of the boat?
"All my analysis of photos indicates a horizontal bench, but an error
of a degree or two is possible.  The curvature of the hull would
force the crew to lean in."

G. Dive plane -
1. How effective was it just having fore planes instead of aft ones?
(It is pretty clunky operating in my rc model)
2. Why weren't planes hinged slightly forward rather than right in
the center?

H. Steering - why did the Alexander / Lake drawing show a wheel
instead of a tiller?
Alexander's recollections were in the early 20th century.  He could
easily and understandably confused details of the two or three boats
he worked on.  I know I have some difficult with 40-year memories."

He had a hard time with the other aspects of the drawing as well. It doesn't really look like any of the subs we know about that he worked on - unless Simon Lake took liberties when he (re)drew it. Perhaps he just described the boat to Lake and Lake drew it from his notes? Lake might have simply assumed there was a wheel if Hasker didn't mention it."Tim Smalley"

I. Were valves found open or closed?

J. Were pumps operable?

K. When was hull damaged?
a. When did forward port get holed?
b. When did tear appear in stern ballast tank?
"A recent report says all the obvious hull damage occurred long after
the loss and attributes it to anchors."

L. Was drop weight ever a viable way of escape?

M. Rudder and steering
1. I think we have this one solved - at least as far as the swinging
rod and slot cut in the rudder. Very similar to the drawing of the
Pioneer II.
What's missing here is the internal linkage.  I think I've mostly
worked out the forward part in general, but how the motion was
transferred in the aft section around all the machinery there is
still open.  I'm about 50% each for a system of levers and for a
chain and pulley. 

N. Lantern

What about the lantern signal, then? If they were somehow incapacitated from the moment of the explosion, how could they have successfully given the signal, if they weren't even able to maneuver out of the area/stay on the surface? "yello_armadillo" --Mike Mc

It had to be one of three scenarios:

1. They were on the surface and dead in the water. After 45 minutes of
recuperating and trying to repair the damage, Dixon decided to signal
the shore, hoping that the observer would realize that they were
stranded and send help.

2. They ran submerged for 45 minutes only to surface and discover that
they were back where they started. Rudder damage could have caused
them to go in circles, or prop/drive damage could have kept them
motionless while they thought they were moving.

3. They intentionally hid on the bottom and surfaced after 45 minutes
to take a look around, get fresh air, and signal the shore to indicate
that they had survived the attack.

Could the sub have successfully gotten further away from the Housatonic under it's own power, given the lantern signal, but drifted back towards it later (due to crew exhaustion, or taking on water from giving the signal, or whatever)? "yello_armadillo" --Mike Mc

"Wouldn't the tide have carried them towards the shore?
" "b_rogoff"

Could the lantern-sighting have been just imagined by those looking for it? Could it have been a light from one of the rescue vessels? Could a small lantern be seen at that distance so low above the water's surface?
"yello_armadillo" --Mike Mc

Funny you should ask. I've been doing some research on that topic.
Signal lanterns were the 19th century equivalent of a flashlight. Many
different manufacturers used the same basic design as the one found on
the Hunley. You can still find ones make from different metals and
having different sliding parts, lenses, and burners.

I wish I knew the size of the real lantern, the width of the wick, and
the fuel it burned. Given that information, it would be possible to do
a simulation to verify that the sighting was really possible. As
usual, the FotH isn't giving out any information.

There were actually three different fuels in use at the time. One
expert says:

"Lamps and many lanterns made early in the nineteenth century burned
whale oil. In fact, whale oil was not immediately displaced by
camphene, introduced between 1830 and 1840, or by kerosene about 1860.
However, because of its availability, abundance, and its perfection as
a fuel for illumination, kerosene eventually replaced other fuel oils
and also was a factor in bringing lamps into general use.

"Camphene, an explosive fuel, necessitated a longer burner than whale
oil. Actually each fuel required its own special kind of wick and
burner for satisfactory illumination, but these fixtures on a lamp
could be changed to suit whatever kind of oil was available."

II. The Loss
A. Why was the sub lost?
1. Various scenarios
    a. Sank due to battle damage / crew injury
"Damage to the boat could have resulted from a number of things:

1. Broken glass and/or hull punctures from small arms fire
2. Overall shock damage from the premature explosion of the torpedo
3. Crank/gears/prop failure due to extreme levels of adrenaline
4. Rudder failure due to water resistance while backing
5. Collision with a random object such as rope, debris, or driftwood
6. Pump fouling and/or other mechanical failure" 

    b. Anoxia / blackout of crew after settling down on bottom waiting
       for tide to turn and to rest crew/wait for Yankees to pass.
Injury to the crew could have resulted from a number of things:

1. Trauma to Dixon's face due to small arms fire from the Housatonic
2. Concussions, contusions, hearing loss due to the premature
3. Stress due to taking fire, loss of candle light, etc.
4. Physical cramps, muscle strains, fatigue, etc.
5. Anoxia and/or hypothermia 

    c. Run down by Canandaigua
I think this theory is highly unlikely. Remember that the USS Canandaigua
had no idea  of the sinking until crewmen from the USS Housatonic were
able to dislodge and board the surviving launches which they had to then
row over 2 1/2 miles of ocean.  The Canandaigua had to then raise anchor

Human errors, for example: bad trim (fore/aft balance) due to the loss
of the mass of the torpedo and spar 

    d. others???
"I had a conversation just a few days ago that included a wave
swamping the boat when the hatch was opened to signal.  While Dixon
standing in the hatch would be a good stopper, perhaps a good deal of
water could get in as he descended.  I go back to Doug Owley's (the
forensic expert) statement that the remains of the two crewmen just
aft of Dixon and the two furthest aft were co-mingled, while the
others were localized to their stations.  He thought this was
significant.  These are the locations of the pump handles."

    e. Could they have survived?
"The answer to that question is subjective and probably will remain so
forever. There is a great deal of physical evidence still to be
uncovered, but some questions will never be answered with any

I think the single most telling piece of evidence is based on
deductive reasoning. The Hunley was still in the area of the
Housatonic roughly 45 minutes after the attack, enough time to
guarantee that other ships would have arrived. It was the most
dangerous location imaginable. And it makes no sense in light of the
fact that they timed the attack to coincide with the incoming tide.

What that tells me is that the boat was unable to make headway and/or
navigate. Although it cannot be disproved, I don't buy the theory that
they hid on the bottom to wait for everyone on the surface to leave.
That might have been hours. More likely, they were simply resting.

"Everything I know about the history of warfare and the Civil War in
particular tells me that the Hunley's mission was to HIT AND RUN. Had
they been able to move, they would have been as far away from the
Housatonic as they possibly could. There was a window of time between
the attack and the arrival of rescue ships in which it would have
quite safe to run on the surface. The tide was favorable. Why throw
that away?"

Apparently, they couldn't proceed.

"The whole idea of hiding on the bottom seems borderline ridiculous to
 me. I think the concept would have been repulsive to the soldiers and
 sailors of that day. They had a fatalistic thirst for glory that's
 difficult to imagine in today's world. There's no glory in hiding on
 the bottom of the ocean. There's also human nature to consider. If you
 were a Hunley crewman, would you prefer to actively run for your life
 or sit motionless on the bottom under the most miserable of
 conditions? I know what I'd choose."
 "yello_armadillo" --Mike Mc

Even though one doesn't like to think of those brave boys laying "doggo" on the bottom like a WWII Gato - I still think it is one of the options - especially if there were also injuries, damage to the boat or steering tackle or crankshaft gears, or the tide had not yet turned (about 6.2 hr between high and low tides). There would be a lag in the tide due to the water piling up in Charleston Harbor so the water would continue out of the harbor mouth even after the tide had turned at the beach. Has anyone tried to find out the exact tides in Charleston back then? I wonder whether they were able to time their attacks so perfectly so they were going out on the ebb and back exactly on the slack or flood tide with no time in between. How well could they just distance and speed to get across water to a target (to figure time out and back) before they launched their mission? Perhaps they had to wait a half an hour rather than try to crank against the last of the ebb tide or get no help back on the slack water interval? "Tim Smalley"

C. How long did it take for the boat to be covered/filled with

f there was no catastrophic damage/leaking (remember the stalactites that need to be formed in air?) to cause total flooding, why couldn't they surface? Or - was there just a little pocket of air/CO2 that allowed the stalagmites to form? If they weren't having any luck pumping, why didn't other crewmen unbolt the drop weight?  If the sub were - say half full - would that have even made a difference? Does anyone remember if the weight "keys" had been turned on the final mission? "Tim Smalley"

III.  The Crew -  
were there differing numbers at different times in the
life of the boat? Both Hasker & Theodore Honour said 9 - later crews
listed as 8 - possible change in later missions?

B. Who were they?

[Question: could the crewmen have cranked with their feet, i.e.,
bicycle style? Everyone assumes that they used their arms exclusively.
Why waste the strength in their legs?]

The whole idea of hiding on the bottom seems borderline ridiculous to
me. I think the concept would have been repulsive to the soldiers and
sailors of that day. They had a fatalistic thirst for glory that's
difficult to imagine in today's world. There's no glory in hiding on
the bottom of the ocean. There's also human nature to consider. If you
were a Hunley crewman, would you prefer to actively run for your life
or sit motionless on the bottom under the most miserable of
conditions? I know what I'd choose.

Okay - Now it's your turn!



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