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Recreating the Battle of Mobile Bay 145 years later

Cannons and history came along this weekend on the shores of Mobile Bay.
/ Source: WPMI-TV

(FORT MORGAN, Ala.) Aug. 2 - Cannons and history came along this weekend on the shores of Mobile Bay. Dressed as soldiers from both sides of the Civil War, re-enactors from across the country started recreating the Battle of Mobile Bay Friday. The actual battle waged for three weeks 145 years ago, but this weekend's battle lasted only three days at the Fort Morgan historical site on the mouth of the bay. The re-enactment was open and free to the public, and some families spend their weekend learning about the past before stepping back into history class. For these kids to get to come down here and see how history really happened, it gives them the opportunity to really picture it, Mignon Bishop says. It is the oppurtunity to see history come alive. We're blessed to live in this area and like to take advantage of the historical activities. Bishop, who lives in Fairhope, says she brings her family to the event every year, and every year, she learns something new. While people watching the historical drama play out, the re-enactors are doing more than putting on a show. It is remembering the soldiers that fought and died during the Civil War. It's important to show people what really happened, Eli Chandler says. Acutal history happened here. You can read a lot of things in books and can hear a lot of things that happened, but we have the opportunity to actually portray what happened and show the true story. The true story of Fort Morgan includes the largest naval battle fought during the Civil War, and the battle was waged at the mouth of Mobile Bay in 1864. Throughout the weekend, the re-enactors tried to give people a glimpse of what happened during three weeks of Gulf Coast history. It's important locally because Fort Gaines surrendered early in the siege, and Fort Morgan held on and fought until the end, which was what their duty was at the station, Chandler says. The re-enactment is every year in early August at the Fort Morgan Historical on Highway 180 in Gulf Shores, but this year's re-enactment took on the additional meaning because of Baldwin County's bicentennial celebration.

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