Fri September 24, 2004
French City Named Civil War Site
By Alabama Public Radio
Cherbourg, France – A city in France has been designated the first historic Civil War site outside of the United States. The city is Cherbourg in northern France. It sits on the English Channel. The reason -- the Confederate State Ship Alabama lies nearly 200 feet below water just a few miles away. A Union ship sank the C-S-S Alabama on June 19th, 1864. The Civil War Preservation Trust, an American nonprofit group, dedicated a plaque commemorating the battle at a city museum, which is exhibiting a cannon recovered from the Alabama. A company in England built the ship for the Confederacy. Captain Raphael Semmes commanded the Alabama. Semmes was a native of Maryland but lived in Mobile after the war.