CSS Albemarle smokestack
Ready by early 1864, the Albemarle was launched on April 19, 1864, she engaged the Union fleet at Plymouth along with a land offensive, forcing the Union to abandon the town. At the Battle of Batchelor’s Bay on May 5, 1864, the Albemarle engaged five Union blockaders and was unable to break through to the Albemarle Sound to support an attempt to retake New Bern. The Albemarle suffered heavy damage to her smokestack, as described by Catherine Edmondston in a recent blog post: “Capt Cooke has had a severe fight with Yankee Gunboats in Albemarle Sound. His Smoke Stack was so riddled with shot that he could not burn coal & but for a supply of Lard & Bacon he would have been taken. He kept up his fires with these, however. Sunk two steamers & fought his way back to Plymouth with one gun disabled & her smoke stack with holes in it through which a man might creep.”
The boat returned to the Plymouth area and was repaired. Union operations sank the boat at her moorings in Plymouth in October 1864. She was later towed to the Norfolk Navy Yard and sold for scrap.
Source: North Carolina Museum of History, accession number 1914.266.1