Encounter History at Fort Morgan

By: April Boone

The cannons of FortMorgan on Alabama's scenic GulfCoast still stand guard over the clear blue waters of MobileBay, witnesses to a bygone era when naval might was crucial to victory and seacoast defenses protected ports from invasion.?Today it serves as a reminder of our military past and of the men and women who continue to serve in our naval and armed forces. FortMorgan provides visitors an in-depth look at of one of the most critical naval battles of the Civil War: The Battle of Mobile Bay, where Union naval forces fought victoriously against the 46 guns of FortMorgan in the summer of 1864 to take the Bay. MobileBay was one of the Confederacy's last big ports available for conducting necessary European trade (the other was in Savannah, Georgia), so the Union's victory here contributed greatly to the economic crippling of the Confederacy -- and helped pave the way for Abraham Lincoln's re-election later that year.

One aspect of the Battle of Mobile Bay eventually entered into American cultural consciousness. The Union lost their lead ironclad, the USS Tecumseh, early in the battle when the ship struck one of the naval mines (which at the time were known as "torpedoes") strewn about the Bay.?Union Admiral David Farragut, under heavy fire from the guns of Forts Morgan and Gaines and the Confederate fleet -- and now without his lead ship -- chose to mount an advance on the mainland rather than stage a retreat.?So it was that Farragut first issued those now-legendary orders: "Damn the torpedoes! Full speed ahead!" FortMorgan remains a great place to feel connected to America's past while enjoying all that the GulfCoast has to offer for outdoor enthusiasts: world-class golf courses, birding and wildlife encounters, and miles and miles of sugar-sand white beaches for swimming, boating, and just relaxing.?And you can find out all the best ways to enjoy Alabama's Gulf Coast by visiting http://www.thebeachiscalling.org.

FortMorgan is at the end of the Dixie Graves Parkway in FortMorganState Park, due west of Gulf Shores, Alabama. The Fort itself is open from 8am until 5pm from November through March and from 8am until 7pm April through OctoberComputer Technology Articles, while the Fort museum is open from 9am until 5pm year-round.

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