FARMTOWN FLABBERGASTER: High gas prices defeat North and South in Civil War battle
SELMA, Ala. – Both the Grays and the Blues waved the white flag after high fuel prices bested both sides in an annual re-enactment of one of Alabama’s most significant Civil War battles.
Sponsors withdrew support from this year's clash because the number of re-enactors has been falling while fuel prices are rising, the Montgomery Advertiser reported this week. The re-enactment depends on Civil War buffs from as far away as Michigan to fill the Union and Confederate ranks, but long drives have taken a financial toll.
Alabama’s tourism director hopes the battle will rage again as new interest is sparked by the approaching150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War. The re-enactment has provided a tourism boost for the small town about 40 miles west of Montgomery.
The Battle of Selma took place in April 1865. Confederate Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest, facing a superior Union force, attempted to defend the arsenal at Selma. While Forrest was defeated, the Union victory was an expensive one, and many Confederates, including Forrest, escaped.