Guns of the Pee Dee
By Ted L. Gragg
Flat River Rock Publishing Co.
Reviewed by J. Keith Jones
In “Guns of the Pee Dee” Ted Gragg combines a piece of unique history with an unusual quest to discover the artifacts of this history. This small volume details the operation to discover the remains of a little known Confederate gunboat – particularly its cannons. Gragg and his team worked for years diving the Pee Dee River to discover the precise location of the Mars Bluff Naval Yard and its artifacts.
This book also tells the story behind this Confederate naval base, its primary boat – named for the river of its home river – and the officers responsible for it. Constructed near the end of the war, the Pee Dee saw very limited action before being scuttled to save it from falling into the hands of Sherman’s invading forces. Its guns lay hidden on the bottom of the river for over a hundred years before being discovered by this tenacious team. You will likely find the mixture of Confederate history and modern day relic hunting to be an interesting and satisfying story.