The History, Discovery, and Recovery of the CSS Pee Dee armament at the Mars Bluff Naval Yard

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The History, Discovery, and Recovery of the CSS Pee Dee armament at the Mars Bluff Naval Yard

July 16 @ 1:00 pm

The Horry County Museum and the AVX Foundation present a lecture by State Underwater Archaeologist Jim Spirek on the History and Recovery of the CSS Pee Dee on July 16th at 1 PM.
In 2019, three cannons from the CSS Pee Dee were installed between the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs building and the National Cemetery in Florence, South Carolina. The cannons were jettisoned at the Mars Bluff Naval Yard and the gunboat scuttled in the Great Pee Dee River during the waning days of the American Civil War. The presence of these cannons represents the culmination of several decades of searching, discovering, recovering and conserving them for public display. Situated between these two military edifices, the display was not intended as a memorial, but rather to reflect on the sacrifices made by those in the armed services and of the complexity of human conflict. The project to document and recover the cannons relied on private and public partnerships. This presentation will provide historical background and archaeological findings from the investigations of the cannons, CSS Pee Dee, and the Mars Bluff Naval Yard.
James Spirek, the State Underwater Archaeologist for South Carolina, works at the South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology at the University of South Carolina, Columbia.  Employed there since 1996 and holding his current position since 2012, Jim’s responsibilities include managing and studying the maritime archaeological legacy residing in the lakes, rivers, and coastal waters of South Carolina.  Jim has participated in numerous projects documenting a diverse range of sunken prehistoric and historic watercraft, Colonial and Native American sites, Civil War warships and blockade runners, and other underwater archaeological remains in state waters.  He is co-editor of Submerged Cultural Resource Management: Preserving and Interpreting Our Sunken Maritime Heritage, and a co-contributor to Archaeology in South Carolina: Exploring the Hidden Heritage of the Palmetto StateFlorida’s Lost Galleon: The Emanuel Point Shipwreck, and Guns of the Pee Dee: The Cannon Recovery.  Jim received his B.A. in History from George Mason University in 1987 and his M.A. in Maritime History and Nautical Archaeology from East Carolina University in 1993.
The program will be held on July 16th at 1 PM in the McCown Auditorium located at 805 Main Street, Conway SC. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, call 843-915-5320 or email To view a full list of programs, visit our website at


July 16
1:00 pm


Horry County Museum
805 Main Street
Conway, SC 29526 United States
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