Mobile Bay, Battle of, August 5, 1864, a Union naval victory in the American Civil War. It brought about the successful blockade of Mobile, Alabama. Rear Admiral David Farragut entered Mobile Bay with a Union fleet of four ironclads and 14 wooden vessels. He found the bay heavily mined and encountered destructive fire from Fort Morgan and Fort Gaines. The Tecumseh, one of the ironclads, was sunk by mines, which in those days were called torpedoes. Farragut, in the Hartford, swept on, leading the rest of the ships. He is usually quoted as having cried out: “Damn the torpedoes! Full steam ahead!"
The Confederate ships, led by the ironclad ram Tennessee, under Admiral Franklin Buchanan, engaged most of the Union fleet and surrendered only after being heavily damaged. The blockade was completed when Fort Morgan fell on August 23. Union losses were 145 killed and 170 wounded. Confederate casualties were 12 killed and 20 wounded. The city of Mobile was captured on April 12, 1865, by troops commanded by Major General E. R. S. Canby.