Couple Chances Upon Cannonballs From the Civil War Era

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Couple Chances Upon Cannonballs From the Civil War Era


A young couple visiting Folly beach in South Carolina chanced upon two Civil War-era cannonballs exposed on the sand, writes Natasha Ishak of All That’s Interesting, a website dedicated to publishing intriguing news. The cannonballs were likely uncovered by Hurricane Dorian, as reported by Lillian Donahue of U.S. television news channel WCSC. The couple hoped to find some artifacts on the beach, however, they did not expect to find cannonballs dating back from the Civil War. Aaron Lattin states, “I wanted to get a metal detector.” In fact, they just got lucky “with no equipment,” as they were just spending time at the beach. Initially, the couple thought that the cannonballs were strange rocks. 


Photo Credit: WCSC (via All Thats Interesting)


Upon closer inspection, they realized the historical objects were “likely old explosives.” The couple then contacted the Folly Beach Department of Public Safety. Police, fire, and EOD teams arrived and “sealed off the area around the cannonballs” in case the weapons were live and dangerous. 

To determine whether the cannonballs were indeed dangerous, “It took the better part of the day, so I'd say close to six hours or so, give or take,” Folly Beach Department of Public Safety Chief Andrew Gilreath informs David Williams of American news channel and website CNN. Explosive experts removed the cannonballs from the area so that the weapons could be destroyed. 


Screen-grabbed photo from WCSC (via All Thats Interesting)


Alba, Lattin’s girlfriend, shares, “It’s a historical treasure. It’s the history of here in Charleston. Of course, after we found it we wanted to tell the world.” Interestingly, Folly Beach Island’s history is connected to the Civil War, as it was occupied by the Union Forces in 1863. The Union built an artillery battery and a war depot to “support their war efforts.”  Moreover, the first shots were fired “not too far from the island in Fort Sumter,” Charleston, South Carolina.

No wonder there are cannonballs buried on the island. Gilreath confirms, “This is something that’s happened every couple of years since I’ve been here, at least.” He adds that erosion will occur on the beach and more will be unearthed. Folly Beach is a go-to treasure hunting spot for historical relics, drawing in history enthusiasts who hope to discover hidden artifacts.




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