PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- It was 200 years ago when British and U.S. ships battled it out in Penobscot Bay, during the War of 1812.
The HMS Boxer and USS Enterprise exchanged fire right off Pemaquid Point, as hundreds watched from shore.
On Thursday, that battle was commemorated at the graves of the Commanders of those ships, who died in battle, and who are buried side by side in The Eastern Cemetery on Congress Street in Portland.
Though the British Navy was especially harsh on Maine citizens during its occupation of Penobscot Bay, which was then part of Massachusetts, the commanders were given a joint funeral procession through the streets of Portland, and laid to rest together.
Cmdr. John Kelly, the Assistant Naval Attache to the British Embassy in Washington, DC, says remembering those who have died in battle, allows us to keep in perspective the wars of today. While the U.S. and British were adversaries then, we are allies now. In fact there are 75 British military personnel serving in and for the United States. There are british officers navaigating U.S. Warships and serving on U.S. submarines.