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CSS Alabama Jenna Showalter Military History Dr. Mitchell March 17, 2020
A Confederate raiding vessel that raged successful in the open seas was the CSS Alabama . Built in 1862 in England, the vessel itself would raid for over two years, accomplishing many of the Southern victories on the seas. 1 Manned and created in England under the Laird Brothers shipyard located across from Liverpool, the CSS Alabama would become known as the shark of the confederacy. The reasoning behind this is soon to be discovered. Under the study of the ship itself and the commanding officer, Raphael Semmes, the history of this naval ship lives on. The ship was created in 1862. To avoid breaking the British neutrality agreement, the ship was completed without weapons so it could sail back to Confederate territory free of harm to both others and the neutrality agreement. 2 The design of the ship allowed to also remain a legend in naval creations. With "a retractable propeller made for faster sailing without engine assistance, thus conserving coal, and a collapsible smokestack allowed the ship to assume the guise of a purely wind-driven vessel.” 3 The vessel would obtain eight guns and uphold a 120 man crew. 4 During the Civil War, this Confederate ship held many global and Union prizes. One case was in the Caribbean where Captain Semmes captured the Ariel. In Texas, 1863, the naval vessel destroyed the Union Hatteras. 5 Because of the naval success and defeat on the Union fleets, the Confederacy was on the rise with naval victories. Tucker mentions in his piece on the CSS

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