Wreck of ship commandeered by slave thought found - WCIV-TV | ABC News 4 - Charleston News, Sports, Weather

Wreck of ship commandeered by slave thought found

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CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - Archeologists think they have found the wreck of the Civil War vessel the Planter, the Confederate ammunition ship commandeered by the slave Robert Smalls who turned it over to the Union during the Civil War.

Researchers with the National Marne Sanctuary Program used maps and newspaper accounts to identify an area at Cape Romain where they think what remains of the Planter is buried.

They found metal items buried under about 15 feet of sand just offshore that is thought to be the Planter. There is probably not much left of the vessel which wrecked in an 1876 storm. Much of its equipment was salvaged at that time.

Researchers plan to meet with reporters to discuss their findings Tuesday, the anniversary of day in 1862 when Smalls seized the vessel.

Smalls served in the South Carolina General Assembly, Congress and worked as a customs inspector after the war.

The Planter wrecked in an 1876 storm. Much of its heavy equipment was salvaged at the time but then its exact location was lost to tides and time.

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