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College of Arts & Sciences
Maritime Research Division


Ogeechee River

In 2005, the Maritime Research Division assissted the recently formed Underwater Archaeology Program of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources in a survey of submerged cultural resources of the American Civil War in the Ogeechee River, just south of Savannah, Georgia. The project was funded by a National Park Service American Battlefield Protection Program grant. Initially, a private underwater archaeological contracting firm, Panamerican, surveyed the project area and prioritized magnetic and acoustic anomalies for visual inspection. The MRD conducted the ground-truthing operations, in concert with Georgia's underwater archaeologist, to determine the source of the anomalies. For the most part, the anomalies were crab traps, logs, or remained a mystery. A dive on the remains of the Confederate privateer the Rattlesnake (aka CSS Nashville and blockade runner Thomas L. Wragg), sunk by the Federal ironclad the USS Montauk in 1863, highlighted the diving operations.