Raphael Semmes moved to Alabama in 1842. When Alabama withdrew from the Union in 1861, Semmes resigned from the U.S. Navy and was Commissioned a commander in the confederate Navy. He was promoted to Captain and assumed command of the C.S.S. Alabama. During its 22-month career as a commerce raider, the Alabama cruised for nearly 75,000 miles and captured 65 union vessels worth more than $6 million. The Alabama was sunk off the coast of Cherbourg, France, on June 2, 1864, by the U.S.S. Kearsage.
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