the navy to take the boat out. The crew were about ready to make their first attack; eight men had gotten aboard, when a swell swamped the boat, drowning the eight men in her. The boat was raised, Lieutenant Payne
and eight others again volunteering.
She was about ready to go out, when she was swamped the second time.
and two of the crew escaped, but six men were drowned in her.
, then turned the boat over to a volunteer crew from Mobile
, known as the ‘Hunley
and Thomas Parks
(one of the best of men), of the firm of Parks
, in whose shop the boat had been built, were in charge, with Messrs. Brockbank
, and another, as the crew, and until the day this crew left Mobile
it was understood that the writer of this was to be one of them, but on the eve of that day Mr. Parks
prevailed on the writer to let him take his place.
Nearly all the men had had some experience in the boat before leaving Mobile
, and were well qualified to operate her.
After the boat had been made ready again Captain Hunley
practiced the crew diving and rising again on many occasions, until one evening, in the presence of a number of people on the wharf, she sank and remained sunk for some days, thus drowning her crew of nine men, or a total up to this time of three different crews, or twenty-three men.
Lieutenant George E. Dixon
, like myself, was a mechanical engineer, and belonged to the same regiment, the Twenty-first Alabama.
He had taken great interest in the boats while building, and during their operations in Mobile river
, and would have been one of the ‘Hunley
’ crew had there been a vacancy.
As soon as the news that the boat had been lost again was verified, we discussed the matter together and decided to offer our services to General Beauregard
, to raise and operate the boat for the defence of Charleston harbor
Our offer was accepted and we were ordered to report to General Jordan
, chief of staff
The boat was raised, and the bodies were buried in the cemetery at Charleston
A monument with suitable inscription marks the spot.
There had been much speculation as to the cause of the loss of the boat, for there could have been no swamping as in the other two cases, but the position in which the boat was found on the bottom of the river, the condition of the apparatus discovered after it was raised and pumped out, and the position