Download The H. L. Hunley: The Secret Hope of the Confederacy Audiobook

The H. L. Hunley: The Secret Hope of the Confederacy Audiobook, by Tom Chaffin Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Tom Chaffin Narrator: Barrett Whitener Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2015 ISBN: 9781504627092
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (36 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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On the evening of February 17, 1864, the Confederacy’s H. L. Hunley sank the Union’s formidable sloop-of-war, the USS Housatonic—to her own demise. For generations, searchers prowled Charleston’s harbor for the sunken boat, while legends surrounding the Hunley and its fate continued to grow. Even after the submarine was located in 1995 and recovered five years later, those legends have continued to grow.

Now, in a tour de force of document sleuthing and insights gleaned from the excavation of this remarkable vessel, distinguished Civil War–era historian Tom Chaffin presents the most thorough telling possible of the H. L. Hunley’s story. Of panoramic breadth, this Civil War saga begins long before the submarine was even assembled and follows the tale into the boat’s final hours and through its recovery in 2000.

The H. L. Hunley is an alternate selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club, History Book Club, and Military Book Club.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Fueled by obsessive scholarship and a boyish sense of wonder, Tom Chaffin takes us deep down into uncharted fathoms of the Civil War—and then surfaces with a finny, fascinating tale that’s equal parts Shelby Foote and Jules Verne.”

    Hampton Sides, author of Blood and Thunder

  • “There is no more compelling human or high-tech story in the annals of the Civil War than the saga of the remarkable H. L. Hunley and its brave, ill-fated crew. Drawing on a vast archive of original sources and an abundance of interpretive skill, Tom Chaffin has crafted an informed, dramatic page-turner. This is authoritative military history that reads like a novel.”

    Harold Holzer, co-chairman of the US Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission and co-author of The Confederate Image

  • “Chronicling this multifaceted story of the Confederacy’s secret hope, Tom Chaffin has answered many of the mysteries surrounding the H.L. Hunley. With an extensive examination of primary documents, he has taken on the mythologizers, offering instead an extraordinary contribution to historical understanding.”

    Orville Vernon Burton, author of The Age of Lincoln

  • “This lively account of the first submarine to sink an opposing ship is an excellent niche history…Sampling from letters, articles and memoirs, the author succeeds in separating facts from legend in this engrossing examination of a pioneering weapon of war.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Avoiding uninformed speculation, Chaffin crafts an exciting narrative of an important innovation in military technology and the political considerations that shaped its development. Insightful and intriguing, meriting a place toward the front of the squadron of Civil War, naval and aquatic archeology titles.”

    Kirkus Reviews, (starred review)

  • “Barrett Whitener keeps himself in the background, letting the obscure story be the main character. He builds the archiving of the ship’s contents to a swell of sentiment as he describes the finding of a lucky twenty-dollar gold piece on the corpse of one of the Rebel sailors. As enlightening as the performance may be, listeners—although well stocked with the author’s description—will find themselves yearning to see the Civil War contraption.”


Listener Reviews

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  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jsmith1000 | 11/26/2013

    " Really, really good book about the Hunley (one of my secret fascinations). I'd love to visit the museum to see it in person. Highly recommend it especially to Jasper Welsch. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dean | 7/10/2013

    " Very interesting book. If you are interested in the Hunley or the Civil War this book is of interest. Has information on New Orleans and Charleston during the Civil War "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mike | 9/7/2012

    " Recomend as a good Civil War history. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chris | 9/22/2011

    " This is the most current book on the history of the Hunley. I was surprised to find out that Clive Cussler, who I have been reading a lot, was the person who sponsored the dive team who found it. Great civil war history. "

About the Author

Tom Chaffin is the author of Sea of Gray and Pathfinder. His work has appeared in the New York Times, Harper’s Magazine, Time, and other publications. He lives in Atlanta, Georgia.

About the Narrator

Barrett Whitener has been narrating audiobooks since 1992. His recordings have won several awards, including the prestigious Audie and six Earphones Awards. AudioFile magazine has named him one of the Best Voices of the Century. He lives in Washington, DC.