CSS Alabama cannon makes Mobile its home

CSS Alabama

By Fox 10TV

One of the guns of the confederate raider, CSS Alabama has returned to the home of its captain, Admiral Raphael Semmes. The CSS Alabama sank in about 200 feet of water off Cherbourg, France, after an engagement with the Union's USS Kearsage on June 11, 1864.

The recovered artifacts, many of them already on display at The Museum of Mobile, provide information about the CSS Alabama’s construction, her technologies, armaments and the lives of those who served on her.

Through archaeological projects such as the CSS Alabama excavation we share the story of our past.

“The City of Mobile carpenters are constructing a cannon carriage for its eventual display in the Museum of Mobile. The exhibit will open once the gallery renovation is complete.

Summer is the projected opening date,” said Jacob Laurence, curator of exhibits. “You never know what may happen with a gun that size if you are not careful and plan accordingly.”

The cannon will be a welcome addition to those items the Museum of Mobile already has on loan from the US Navy. It will become the centerpiece in the 700 square foot exhibit funded by the Mobile Museum Board. The gun is one of eight guns that were originally on the deck of the CSS Alabama.

Six were 32-pounder cannon, which means they shot a 32-pound round cannon ball and were stationed at the edges of the deck facing starboard or port.

The other two were larger pivot guns that were located in the middle of the deck and fired conical shot by contrast to the gun the Museum will display. The gun is black in color, approximately 10 feet long, and weighs 5000 pounds (2 1/2 tons).

The cannon is one of only three recovered of the original six of that size.

One is at the Navy Yard in Washington, the other in Charleston, SC.

This cannon will be on a long-term loan from the US Navy Naval History and Heritage Command in Washington D.C.


france CSS Alabama Admiral Raphael Semmes Cherbourg Museum of Mobile Union's USS Kearsage