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Battle of Mobile Bay

In 1864, David Farragut was assigned the task of securing Mobile Bay, the center of Confederate blockade-running. The area was protected by formidable fortifications and the bay was heavily mined (mines at that time were known as torpedoes). On August 5, 1864, Farragut gave the order to ignore the risks: “Damn the torpedoes! Full steam ahead!” The modest Confederate fleet was defeated and the forts surrendered shortly thereafter. The city of Mobile, however, held out until the next spring, but the Union fleet managed to enforce its blockade. Galveston was the only remaining port of any significance that continued trade. The engagement on Mobile Bay was the preeminent naval action of the Civil War.