Civil War photo turns out to be a hoax

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Civil War Photo Turns Out To Be A Hoax

A highly sought-after Civil War photo that has been missing since '80s has turned out to be a hoax.

Historians believed this photo that surfaced in 1986 was of the CSS Georgia battleship.

The Georgia was a 120-foot ship that remained anchored at Old Fort Jackson because its propellers were too weak to push it up the Savannah River. It didn't make much of a name for itself before Confederates sailors sunk it in 1864.

The Associated Press reports several artists back in the day published illustrations of the battleship, but the details weren't consistent and no blueprints survived.

Thirty years ago, Georgia native John Potter said he found the photo at a yard sale but couldn't afford it, so he just snapped a pic of it and sent it to historical groups in Savannah.

For years, collectors and historians have hoped for it to reappear and it finally has ... except it's all just a bunch of hooey.

Civil War photo hoax
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Civil War photo turns out to be a hoax
Photo credit: John Potter/AP
Photo credit: John Potter/AP
Photo credit: John Potter/AP
Photo credit: Alex Sanz/AP
Photo credit: US Army Corps of Engineers/AP

Potter says he and his brother made a fictional Civil War movie in the '70s and decided to take a photo of a model of the ship. They put it in an antique frame and took a photo of it.

He didn't realize there was so much hubbub about it until a few months ago when he saw his photo on the Army Corps website.

Potter told the Associated Press he decided to come clean because he didn't want to take the secret to his grave and have the photo end up in history books.

Now, the frame that once held the fake photo holds a picture of Potter's deceased dog.

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