Thursday, January 24, 2008

The Odyssey of the "Alabama" - History - Flores - Azores

During the American Civil War the Southern forces used privateers as one way to attack the Northern merchant navy. The most famous of them all was the "Alabama" which, built in England in 1862, came to receive her armament and ammunitions near Flores and then immediately started out in pursuit of the Northern whalers which were in local waters and rapidly sank them. After that, the "Alabama" continued as a privateer, sinking about 70 ships until, in June 1864 she was attacked and destroyed by the "Kearsarge", of the United States Navy in the area of the English Channel. The transfer of the "Alabama" to the Confederates cost England an indemnity of over 15 million dollars in gold for the damages she had caused.

One of the crewmen of the "Alabama", was a brave sailor from the island of Corvo who, after his adventures, was nicknamed Alabama. His descendants still live on Corvo.

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