This Day In History: A Sub Named David

C.S.S David

During the Civil War, the Union undertook the C.S.S. Including the construction of about 20 submarines began. David. The cigar-shaped, submersible torpedo boat was designed by Saint Julian Ravenel, a medical doctor, agricultural chemist, and apparently not a naval engineer, who helped develop phosphate-based fertilizers after the war. of, but saw himself as a Renaissance man. In 1863, the finished vessel, designed to carry a 134-lb. The gunpowder charge was placed under the control of the Confederate Navy. Its depth in the water and the smokeless engine allowed David to patrol the water almost invisibly, especially at night.

David's Moment in the Sun (er, Water)

As the war heated up, Union officials established a blockade in Charleston Harbor to prevent the transport of weapons, supplies, and other munitions from Confederate troops. When the Union Navy brought in iron ships, it seemed that the blockade would remain unbroken. The only hope was a surprise bombing, so on October 5, 1863, Lieutenant William T. Glassell C.S.S. David U.S. Towards the new Ironsides under cover of darkness.

Glasell got about 50 yards of the ship undetected, but was then spotted by a night watchman on Ironclad, so Glasell pulled out his shotgun and killed the guards before detonating a torpedo beneath the New Ironsides, causing A column of water rose high. Extinguishing air and ship boilers. To the dismay of the Union, New Ironside was damaged but not sunk and the Union blockade remained intact, but he killed three crew members, so that was few.

Where Is C.S.S David Now?

css The fate of David remains unclear until 1998, when Dr. E. Lee Spence, an underwater archaeologist with the Sea Research Society and National Geographic radar operator Pete Petrone, found the suspicious remains of two Confederate torpedo boats buried under the streets of Charleston. The location closely matches information from a post-war letter written by David C. Abaugh which mentions where David was left in the final days of the war, but the site has not yet been excavated. So, css David's final resting place remains in the air (or rather, under the sea).

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