KURE BEACH, N.C. — North Carolina is opening its first heritage dive site, a Civil War blockade runner located off the coast at Fort Fisher.

The dive site in the Condor will open Friday and will provide the opportunity to explore what’s described as one of the best-preserved shipwrecks on the North Carolina coast. The dedication will be held at the Fort Fisher Historic Site in Kure Beach.

The Condor ran aground and was lost on the night of Oct. 1, 1864, as it steamed through the cordon of Union naval vessels blockading the port of Wilmington.

The 218-foot-long wreckage rests in 25 feet of water about 700 yards off the beach in front of the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher.

The site will be open for divers from June through November.

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