In early 1865 the USS Harvest Moon, a 193-foot, 5-gun side-wheel steamer, was the flagship of Adm. John A. Dahlgren of the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron, U.S. Navy. It arrived off Georgetown and anchored nearby on February 26th. Confederate Capt. Thomas W. Daggett, in charge of coastal defenses from Little River to Georgetown, made plans to sink the Harvest Moon with a "torpedo," or mine.
Daggett, working on the 2nd floor of S.W. Rouquie's store here at 633 Front Street, built a keg torpedo and floated it out as the Harvest Moon steamed down the bay early on March 1, 1865. The blast blew a hole in the starboard quarter and main deck, and the ship sank in five minutes, with only one sailor killed. The smokestack of the Harvest Moon can still be seen at low tide in Winyah Bay, near Battery White.