Mars Bluff, South Carolina: Atom Bomb Dropped Here Team Field Report

Crater Rd/4776 Lucius Circle, Mars Bluff, SC
On E. Palmetto St./US 301, roughly 6.5 miles east of Florence. The marker is on the north side of the highway, 1.2 miles east of Freedom Blvd or .3 miles west of Francis Marion Rd/Hwy 327. To reach the crater, drive up the road (Crater Rd) next to the marker, then turn sharply right as it bends around an abandoned trailer park. When you get to a gate leading out of the trailer park, you'll see a small, overgrown path on the left leading into the woods, to the crater. Visitors are assumed to have gained permission from the owner to visit.
Private property.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
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Sign for Atomic Bomb Crater Site.

Atom Bomb Dropped Here
In 1958 an atom bomb fell out of a plane and blew a crater into the gummy soil of Mars Bluff, South Carolina. The atomic part didn't explode. Report... [10/03/2010]

Visitor Tips and News About Atom Bomb Dropped Here

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News clipping.

Atom Bomb Dropped Here

The vacant lot is actually at 4776 Lucius Circle. The crater, bomb cutout, and kiosk with newspaper clippings are all still intact, just into the woods behind the lot as of May 2017. Neighbors are friendly.

[Dennis & Maureen, 05/24/2017]
Atom Bomb Dropped Here

That path through the woods is overgrown to the point of being impassible. The abandoned RV park is chained off as well. The crater is easily accessed from between two houses on Lucius Circle. There are no signs posted. It is unclear if this is a legitimate entrance or not.

[Jacob Krejci, 08/23/2015]

Home foundation sign.

Atom Bomb Dropped Here

Phone GPS brought us right to the empty lot. You can see the kiosk and bomb cutout from the road, through the trees. The information at the kiosk is very interesting. The crater isn't entirely filled with water, and the middle is dark enough for you to realize the thing is deep. There is a bit of a trail behind all of this; follow it and you will go past some junk and then over a bridge and then you arrive at the ruins of the house foundation, which is labeled with a sign that doesn't face you and is starting to be covered up. You can see the blocks and bricks still there.

Be sure to go down the road, past the abandoned trailer park, and park in the abandoned gas station to take pictures/read the historical marker.

[John, 01/16/2015]

The house belonged to the Gregg family, which narrowly avoided being pulverized by the bomb.

Plywood cutout of bomb.

Atom Bomb Dropped Here

There's a much easier way to get to the Mars Bluff atomic bomb crater than driving through that giant abandoned trailer park off of Route 301 (Although you should still stop at the entrance to the trailer park to read the historical highway maker).

The easy way to get to the bomb landing site is to just go to Lucius Circle and loop around to the back. Conveniently enough, there's a vacant lot (4758 Lucius Circle) in front of the path that leads to the crater, so you don't even have to slog through someone's yard to get there.

The kiosk, the plywood cutout of the bomb, and the rickety observation deck are all still back there, as is the crater itself, which looks more and more like a water-filled depression in the ground rather than something caused by a bomb blast. Still, definitely worth the detour off of Route 301 to see it.

[Dean Jeffrey, 11/15/2014]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Bomb Crater MarkerBomb Crater Marker, Florence, SC - < 1 mi.
Grave of Woman Who Pretended to be a ManGrave of Woman Who Pretended to be a Man, Florence, SC - 6 mi.
Atom Bomb FragmentsAtom Bomb Fragments, Florence, SC - 6 mi.
In the region:
National Bean Market Museum, Lake City, SC - 23 mi.

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