Today marks the beginning of a new process for the world to view that unseen side of the H.L. Hunley submarine. On February 17, 1864, the Hunley coasted to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean and has laid on its starboard side ever since. Charleston Senator Glenn McConnell is on the Hunley Commission and says a crew will raise the submarine today, and rotate it next week.
Next week, probably Wednesday or Thursday in particular we will begin at a half-inch at a time rotating the submarine upward to bring it upright.
McConnell says that should reveal some hidden answers to century-old questions they’ve had. He says there are two theories as to what happened the night the Hunley sank, taking eight on board with it.
When we deconcrete on the front we will know whether or not the firing off the deck of the Housatonic at the Hunley did in fact injure the hull. Today, we have no evidence of that. The second theory is that the USS Canandaigua came into the aid of the Housatonic as it was sinking, grazed the Hunley and that the Hunley dove right in the path of the Canandaigua.
It wasn’t until 1995 when the Hunley was found and it was first raised in 2000. Today, crews are raising the Hunley again, but next week will be the first time the Hunley will be rotated.