150 Years Ago this Evening. . .
. . . the Confederate submersible H. L. Hunley sank the Federal warship Housatonic in the Atlantic Ocean off Charleston.
Update, February 17, 3 p.m.: My colleagues Craig Swain and Robert Moore both have reflections on this day. Craig shares some thoughts on the the sinking of Housatonic, and its place in the Charleston campaign and the larger war effort. He closes with this:
Another point, and this is more a personal rub, is how we frame this event for interpretation. The headlines are “Hunley-centric” as if the Housatonic was just a hulk out there on the waters. There were men on board the Housatonic that night. These were not nameless, faceless entities. Rather men serving for cause and country. Five those men did not see the next day. And they are still out there. Should we not mention Ensign Edward Hazeltine, Clerk Charles Muzzey, Quartermaster John Williams, Second Class Fireman John Walsh, and Landsman Theodore Parker on this day?
And as it happens, Robert Moore was thinking exactly along those lines.