St. Albans is getting ready for a big celebration next year. The town is going to mark the 150th anniversary of the St. Albans Raid-- the northern-most battle in the Civil War.
During the raid in 1864, 21 Confederate soldiers descended on St. Albans with the goal of robbing banks, killing people and burning down the town. The Confederates were all young men who had escaped Northern jails and fled to Canada. During the raid they robbed three banks, taking an estimated $200,000. They ended up killing one person, who actually happened to be a Southern sympathizer.
"There was going to be 10 raids along the Canadian border; this is the only one that materialized and it is different and it accomplished some of its goal-- it drew troops from the front lines up to here. They did get some money, but the bigger thing about it is it almost caused an international break with England because the Union troops who were the posse crossed the Canadian border armed and that's a big no-no," said Warren Hamm of the St. Albans Historical Society.
The Confederates were finally caught in Canada, but most charges were dropped because of a technicality and many returned home to the South.
Next year's celebration of the raid will include a big re-enactment of the raid that will take place on the town green.
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