July 16, 2010

General Beauregard Shipwreck off Carolina Beach

This wreck photo is courtesy of Broad and Reel (now My Friend Grayson).

The wreck is located near the end of Spartanburg Ave and is visible during low tide. It is approximately 100 yards from the shore. Also, if you visit the public gazebo at the Lake Dr beach access, they have several boards with historical information on the General Beauregard.

From the
NC Office of State Archaeology
The General Beauregard was built in Glascow, Scotland in 1858. It was built as a coastal ferry boat but was converted for blockade running in early 1863. The vessel was an iron sidewheel steamer 223 feet in length.

The vessel was on its seventh attempt at running the blockade into New Inlet when it was stopped short of its destination. The vessel was run ashore and destroyed north of Fort Fisher. There was no report of salvage by either Federals or Confederates.

Today, the vessels steam machinery is intact with its paddlewheel shaft and hubs remaining in place. Cooling tanks, grated cargo hatches, water tanks, a large rectangular aft boiler, bollards, and a davit exist on site. Both bow and stern sections are broken but not removed from the body of the wreck and are for the most part covered with sand. Although small artifacts have been recovered from the site, the wreck apparently has escaped serious salvage attempts.

From the US Park Service
Archaeology Program:
General Beauregard. The remains of this iron hulled side-wheel blockade runner (ex-Havelock) are buried in 15 feet of water in the Atlantic Ocean near Carolina Beach. Built in 1858 and sunk in 1863. Owned by the State of North Carolina. Listed in the National Register as part of an archaeological district, this wreck is nationally significant.

Photo: Beauregard is located in foreground during a battle in Memphis, TN in 1862
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