Secrets Of The ‘hunley’


With a 90-pound explosive charge attached to an iron spar protruding from her bow, the Confederate sub H. L. Hunley looked like a lopsided hypodermic needle. On the night of February 17, 1864, off Charleston, South Carolina, she gave the Union sloop Housatonic a lethal injection.

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The End Of The Alabama

Captain Semmes was spoiling for a fight—and Winslow of the U.S.S. Kearsarge was waiting for him, just off Cherbourg

Early in 1864 the Confederate States Steamer Alabama left the Indian Ocean and headed for European waters. Her captain, Raphael Semme—tired, ill, and bad-tempered after almost three years commanding Confederate raiders noted in his journal on May 21: “Our bottom is in such a state that everything passes us. We are like a crippled hunter limping home from a long chase.” During almost two years at sea the Alabama had never been long enough in any port for a thorough overhaul of her hull, rigging, and engines.Read more »

Last Of The Rebel Raiders

Long after the Civil War was over, the Shenandoah’s die-hard skipper was still sinking Yankee ships

On the night of October 8, 1864, a little group f m of men hurried through log-shrouded streets in Liverpool, England, to board the steamer Laurel , which lay waiting in the harbor. They posed as passengers and pretended to be strangers to one another, but in tact they were officers and men of the Confederate Navy. Some of them had reached Europe oil the blockade-runners that slipped in and out of southern ports.