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Subdeacon Joe

First Successful Attack Submarine

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On 17 February 1864, after months of practice runs and weather delays, the Confederate submarine, under cover of darkness,  silently approached USS Housatonic, a 16-gun, 1,240-ton sloop-of-war, on blockade duty four miles off the entrance to Charleston Harbor, South Carolina. Carrying a torpedo packed with explosive black powder bolted to a 16-foot spar, H. L. Hunley rammed Housatonic below the water line, detonating the torpedo, tearing a hole in the Union ship’s hull and sending her to the bottom along with five of her crew. Hunley was not seen again for over a century.

https://www.history.navy.mil/research/underwater-archaeology/sites-and-projects/ship-wrecksites/hl-hunley.html

 

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/new-clues-about-why-confederate-submarine-hl-hunley-sank-180969724/

 

 

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35 minutes ago, Abilene Slim SASS 81783 said:

Nope, this was the first attack submarine (although the attack was unsuccessful). :)

 

Turtle

 

 

Noted.  Title edited.

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A Pyrrhic success for sure.

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6 minutes ago, Utah Bob #35998 said:

A Pyrrhic success for sure.

 

In terms of vessels ratio of 1:1.
In terms of men the ratio is 1:21 ( I think).

 

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The Turtle from the revolution But the Hunley got the limelight.

 

on another note the Intrepid was the first aircraft launched from an aircraft carrier.

A US army reconnaissance ballon launched from a Union Ironclad 1862.

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10 hours ago, Abilene Slim SASS 81783 said:

Nope, this was the first attack submarine (although the attack was unsuccessful). :)

 

Turtle

 

You beat me to it :)

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A success because it sank a vessel. I think the theory about the blast wave is a really plausible one. 16 feet plus is not far away enough from the explosion of that much BP aided by the compression of the water:blush:

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46 minutes ago, Four-Eyed Buck,SASS #14795 said:

A success because it sank a vessel. I think the theory about the blast wave is a really plausible one. 16 feet plus is not far away enough from the explosion of that much BP aided by the compression of the water:blush:

 

 

Sunk by their own depth charge?  I find that theory reasonable. Especially when coupled with that fitting that may have been broken from the blast.  Endless speculation and we will never know for sure.  

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I visited the Hunley center back in 2016 when visiting family in Charleston.  Being next to the boat in its immersion tank was eerie knowing that it's still a tomb.  The gentleman in the picture of the cross-section mock up was around 5' 8" in height.  One of the Hunley crew members was reported to be 6' 1".  That had to be cramped.  

Hunley Cross Section.jpg

Hunley Emersion Tank.jpg

Hunley Model.jpg

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24 minutes ago, Ozark Shark said:

I visited the Hunley center back in 2016 when visiting family in Charleston.  Being next to the boat in its immersion tank was eerie knowing that it's still a tomb.  The gentleman in the picture of the cross-section mock up was around 5' 8" in height.  One of the Hunley crew members was reported to be 6' 1".  That had to be cramped.  

Hunley Cross Section.jpg

 

There is a traveling Hunley Exhibit that you can sit in.  Brave and crazy to volunteer for that.

 

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If I recall my readings right, the hatches into the Hunley were ovals measuring about 17" X 21".

 

Most average-sized people would have to work their hips and shoulders through to get in and out of it.

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6 hours ago, Ozark Huckleberry said:

If I recall my readings right, the hatches into the Hunley were ovals measuring about 17" X 21".

 

Most average-sized people would have to work their hips and shoulders through to get in and out of it.

Yep.  Definitely not conducive to a quick crew evacuation.  It was a deathtrap that killed multiple men including its namesake, before going down the last time.  I think the crew knew the risks.  From the items being recovered from inside the Hunley, it's apparent that many were carrying family mementos like many do when facing extreme odds.

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