Nineteenth-century engineer who designed and built Confederate submarines during the Civil War era. His best-known submarine, the H.L. Hunley, was named in his honor.
Before building his first submarine, the Pioneer, he worked as a lawyer and held a seat in the Louisiana State Legislature.
Before its own sinking, his H.L. Hunley was the first naval vessel in history to sink an enemy submarine (the USS Housatonic).
He was born in Sumner County, Tennessee and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana. He died in a failed submarine exercise and was buried in Charleston, South Carolina.
He and Whitcomb L. Judson were both Civil War-era inventors.