Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Underwater Archaeologists to Raise Three Confederate Cannons

Hailing from the University of South Carolina, the underwater archaeologists announced last Wednesday that they will begin work to locate and raise the three cannons -- each weighing upwards of a mere 15 tons -- once belonging to the Confederacy.

Led by state underwater archaeologist Christopher Amer, researchers from the university’s S.C. Institute for Archaeology and Anthropology will use remote sensing technology, including a magnetometer that identifies the presence of iron, to survey the Confederate Mars Bluff Navy Yard on the Pee Dee River and locate the nine-, 10- and 15-ton cannons. The Navy Yard is on the east side of the river in Marion County.

The survey is set to begin April 30, with location of the cannons and excavation of the Naval Yard taking place in late May to mid-June. Once located and verified, the cannons, also called gun tubes, will be raised as early as this fall. The project is funded in part by a $200,000 grant from the Drs. Bruce and Lee Foundation in Florence.

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