Fort Fisher

Fort Fisher
Fort Fisher, NE Bastion. Frank Vizetelly (National Geographic)

Monday, February 13, 2017

February 13-15, 1862: Those "Infernal Machines"

FEBRUARY 13-15, 1862:  The USS Pembina, Lt. John P. Bankhead, discovered a  battery of "tin-can" torpedoes (mines) while engaged in sounding the Savannah River above the mouth of Wright's River.  The mines, only visible at low tide, were connected by wires and moored individually to the bottom.

The following day, Bankhead returned and effected the removal of one of the 'infernal machines" for purposes of examination.  On the 15th, Bankhead "deemed it more prudent to endeavor to sink the remaining ones than to attempt to remove them," and sank the mines by rifle fire.

Torpedoes were planted in large numbers in the harbors and rivers of the Confederacy, constituting a major hazard which Union commanders had to consider and reckon with in planning operations.

Don't Go in the Water.  Old B-R'er

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