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Medal of Honor

Medal of Honor


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Lawrence Joel awarded Medal of Honor

For action this day in the Iron Triangle northwest of Saigon, Specialist Five Lawrence Joel, a medic with the 1st Battalion, 503rd Airborne Infantry, 173rd Airborne Brigade is awarded the Medal of Honor, becoming the first living African American since the Spanish-American War to ...read more

Has anyone earned two Medals of Honor?

Some 3,500 Americans have received the Medal of Honor since it was first introduced in the 1860s, but to date, only 19 have earned the military’s highest award for valor on two occasions. The first was Civil War cavalryman Thomas Ward Custer, younger brother of George Armstrong ...read more

WWI Hero Henry Johnson Finally Receives Medal of Honor

In 1917, Henry Johnson was working as a railroad porter in Albany, New York, when the United States declared war on Germany. At the time, before the Selective Service Act introduced conscription, African-American volunteers were only allowed in four all-black regiments in the ...read more

The Medal of Honor: 6 Surprising Facts

1. At first, the idea of a Medal of Honor was dismissed as too “European.”During the American Revolution, George Washington established the first combat decoration in U.S. history, known as the Badge of Military Merit. After the conflict it fell into disuse, as did its ...read more

Medal of Honor created

President Abraham Lincoln signs into law a measure calling for the awarding of a U.S. Army Medal of Honor, in the name of Congress, “to such noncommissioned officers and privates as shall most distinguish themselves by their gallantry in action, and other soldier-like qualities ...read more

First Medal of Honor action

The earliest military action to be awarded a Medal of Honor is performed by Colonel Bernard J.D. Irwin, an assistant army surgeon serving in the first major U.S.-Apache conflict. Near Apache Pass, in southeastern Arizona, Irwin, an Irish-born doctor, volunteered to go to the ...read more

Conscientious objector wins Medal of Honor

Private First Class Desmond T. Doss of Lynchburg, Virginia, is presented the Medal of Honor for outstanding bravery as a medical corpsman, the first conscientious objector in American history to receive the nation’s highest military award. When called on by his country to fight ...read more

Air Force helicopter pilot rescues Special Forces team

While returning to base from another mission, Air Force 1st Lt. James P. Fleming and four other Bell UH-1F helicopter pilots get an urgent message from an Army Special Forces team pinned down by enemy fire. Although several of the other helicopters had to leave the area because ...read more

Decorated U.S. soldier Audie Murphy is wounded

The most decorated man of the war, American Lt. Audie Murphy, is wounded in France. Born the son of Texas sharecroppers on June 20, 1925, Murphy served three years of active duty, beginning as a private, rising to the rank of staff sergeant, and finally winning a battlefield ...read more


Congressional Gold Medal Recipients

Since the American Revolution, Congress has commissioned gold medals as its highest expression of national appreciation for distinguished achievements and contributions. Each medal honors a particular individual, institution, or event. Although the first recipients included citizens who participated in the American Revolution, the War of 1812 and the Mexican War, Congress broadened the scope of the medal to include actors, authors, entertainers, musicians, pioneers in aeronautics and space, explorers, lifesavers, notables in science and medicine, athletes, humanitarians, public servants, and foreign recipients.

In addition to the requirement that all Congressional Gold Medal legislation must be cosponsored by at least two-thirds (290) of the Members of the House, specific standards are set forth by Rule X, 2 (h) of the House Committee on Financial Services Subcommittee on Domestic Policy and Technology when considering such legislation. Additionally, the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee requires that at least 67 Senators must cosponsor any Congressional Gold Medal legislation before the committee will consider it.


January 13, 1997 Buffalo Soldier

From the second floor of a house, Lieutenant Fox directed American defensive fire by radio, adjusting each salvo closer to his own position. Warned that his final adjustment would bring down artillery fire on his own head, the soldier who received the message was stunned at the response. 1st Lt. John Fox’ last known words, were “Fire it.”

In September 1867, Private John Randall of Troop G, US 10th Cavalry Regiment, was assigned to escort two civilians on a hunting trip. The hunter became the hunted when a band of 70 Cheyenne warriors swept down on the trio. The two civilians were killed in the initial attack and Randall’s horse shot out from under him.

Cornered in a washout under some railroad tracks, single handed, Randall held off the attack with his revolver, despite a gunshot wound to his shoulder and no fewer than 11 lance wounds.

By the time help arrived, 13 Cheyenne warriors lay dead. Private Randall was still standing. Word spread among the Cheyenne about a new kind of soldier, “who had fought like a cornered buffalo who like a buffalo had suffered wound after wound, yet had not died and who like a buffalo had a thick and shaggy mane of hair.”

The US 10th Cavalry, formed on September 21, 1866 at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, was the first unit of “Negro Cavalry”, an all-black unit which would soon be joined by the 9th, 24th and 25th Cavalry, and come to be known as “Buffalo Soldiers”.

Several all-black regiments were formed during the Civil War, including the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry depicted in the film, “Glory”. The “Buffalo Soldiers” were the first peacetime all-black regiments in the regular Army.

The original units fought in the American Indian Wars, the Spanish-American War, the Philippine-American War, the Border War and two World Wars, amassing 23 Medals of Honor by the end of 1918.

At one time, “Buffalo Soldiers” was a catch-all term, used to describe American troops of African ancestry. Today the term is used as a badge of honor only by those units who trace their lineage to the 9th and 10th Cavalry regiments. Here, the 92nd Division (segregated) in the Argonne Forest of WW1. The 92nd’s insignia is a buffalo: a tribute to their predecessors.

The old met with the new during WWII when Mark Matthews, veteran of the Pancho Villa Expedition, WW1, WW2 and the Battle of Saipan, was sent to train with the Tuskeegee Airmen. In the end, Matthews would prove too old to fly. A member of the Buffalo Soldiers Drum & Bugle Corps, Matthews would play taps at Arlington National Cemetery, always from the woods. Blacks of the era were not permitted at “white” funerals. 1 st Sergeant Matthews retired shortly before the Buffalo Soldiers were disbanded, part of President Truman’s initiative to integrate United States’ armed forces..

1st Lt. John Robert Fox

In December 1944, the segregated 366th Infantry Regiment of the 92nd Infantry Division was fighting in the vicinity of Sommocolonia, in northern Italy. On Christmas day, German soldiers began to infiltrate the town, disguised as civilians. A heavy artillery barrage began in the early morning hours of the 26th, followed by an overwhelming attack of enemy ground forces. Vastly outnumbered, American infantry were forced to conduct a fighting retreat.

First Lieutenant John R. Fox, forward observer for the 598th Field Artillery Battalion, volunteered to stay behind with a small Italian force, to help slow the enemy advance. From the second floor of a house, Lieutenant Fox directed American defensive fire by radio, adjusting each salvo closer to his position. Warned that his final adjustment would bring down artillery fire on his own head, the soldier who received the message was stunned at the response. 1st Lt. John Fox’ last known words, were “Fire it.”

When American forces retook the town, Lieutenant Fox’ body was found with those of about 100 German soldiers.

The King James Bible translates John 15:13, as “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends“. After the war, Sommocolonia erected a Memorial. A tribute to nine brave soldiers who gave their lives, that their brothers might live. Eight Italians, and one American.

In a January 13, 1997 ceremony at the White House, President Bill Clinton awarded the Medal of Honor, posthumously, to the family of 1st Lieutenant John R. Fox.

1 st Sergeant Mark Matthews, the last of the Buffalo Soldiers, died of pneumonia on September 6, 2005 at age of 111. A man who forged papers in order to join at age fifteen and once had to play taps from the woods, was buried with military honors at Arlington National Cemetery, section 69, grave #4215.

The rank of General of the Armies is equivalent to that of a six-star general, the highest possible operational rank of the United States Armed Forces. The rank has been awarded only twice, once posthumously to George Washington, and only once to an active-duty officer: John Joseph Pershing.

Then-1st Lieutenant Pershing served with the Buffalo Soldiers from October 1895 to May 1897 plus another six months in Cuba, and came to respect soldiers of African ancestry as “real soldiers”, in every way. As West Point instructor beginning in 1897, Pershing was looked down upon and insulted by white cadets and officers, aggrieved over Pershing’s strict and unyielding disciplinary policies.

The press sanitized the favored insult to “Black Jack,” delivered, no doubt, behind the man’s back, but that’s not they said.

During WW1, General Pershing bowed to the segregationist policies of President Woodrow Wilson and Secretary of War Newton Baker. It seems Pershing understood what the Connecticut academic and the Ohio politician had failed to learn, a principle the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. would spell out, some fifty years later:

“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools”.

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Vietnam War photographer’s Medal of Honor in American History Museum exhibit

The only Medal of Honor to be awarded to a combat photographer is now on display in the Medal of Honor Gallery in the “Price of Freedom” exhibition at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.

Marine Cpl. William Thomas Perkins Jr. died at the age of 20 on Oct. 12, 1967, when he flung himself on a grenade to preserve the lives of three other Marines during Operation Medina, a Marine search and destroy operation in Quang Tri Province, Vietnam. The Marine Corps posthumously awarded him the Medal of Honor for “his gallant actions.”

Perkins’ mother, Marilane Perkins Jacobson of Lexington, Ky., donated the medal, her son’s letters and other personal effects to the museum’s permanent Armed Forces Collections in 2015.

“I didn’t want his possessions to end up in somebody’s brown box in a basement,” Jacobson said. “I figured they should go to the Smithsonian.”

Perkins’ award, his Purple Heart, and photography are exhibited along with his Bell and Howell camera, which shows damage from the grenade attack and is on loan from the National Museum of the Marine Corps. This is the first time the camera and Medal of Honor have been displayed together. Museum Advisory Board member Jeff Garrett, also of Lexington, assisted with the acquisition.

The Medal of Honor is America’s highest award for valor in combat. First authorized in 1861 for sailors and Marines and the following year for soldiers, more than 3,400 Medals of Honor have been bestowed for conspicuous and well-documented acts of gallantry in war. The Medal of Honor Gallery tells the story of the nation’s highest military honor through artifacts and interactive displays.

The Medal or Honor, Purple Heart and Bell and Howell camera of William Thomas Perkins, Jr. on exhibit in the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.

Jacobson told the Associated Press in 2015 that her son’s Medal of Honor was precious to her, “but I can’t take it with me. I’ve just been holding my breath and asking God to give me time to send that where it should be forever.”

Her son’s love for cameras came from his father, William T. Perkins, who worked for Eastman Kodak, headquartered in Rochester, N.Y.

Perkins Jr. joined the Marines “because they were the only ones who said he could probably work with a Mitchell movie camera,”Jacobson told the Associated Press. The Mitchell camera was a 35mm camera often used in Hollywood.

The “Price of Freedom: Americans at War” exhibition surveys the history of America’s military from the French and Indian Wars to the present conflict in Iraq, exploring ways in which wars have been defining episodes in American history. The exhibition extends far beyond a survey of battles to present the link between military conflict and American political leadership, social values, technological innovation, and personal sacrifice. The heart of the story is the impact of war on citizen soldiers, their families and communities.

Asked what she wants people to learn from her son’s effects, Jacobson told AP, “As far as I’m concerned, the war was a waste, and I hate war. Not too many other people threw themselves on grenades to save other people. But I would think they would think he had great character, which he did, and he lived a lifetime in 20 years.”


Profiles in Courage: 5 Medal of Honor Recipients

The Medal of Honor is the United States of America's highest military honor for personal acts of valor above and beyond the call of duty. The medal is bestowed by the President of the United States in the name of the U.S. Congress to U.S. military personnel only. The veterans profiled below are only a few among those who have received the medal -- for a full list of all recipients, visit the Congressional Medal of Honor Society.

Robert Dale Maxwell (born October 26, 1920)

The oldest current living medal of Honor recipient is a former Army soldier who received the medal in recognition of his actions in World War II. Maxwell served as a technician fifth grade with the 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division. Part of the Allied invasion of Sicily in 1943, Maxwell was wounded during the Battle of Anzio in January 1944 and rejoined his unit for the invasion of southern France (Operation Dragoon) in August 1944. On September 7, near Besançon, Maxwell performed the act that would be commemorated by his Medal of Honor:

Technician 5th Grade Maxwell and 3 other soldiers, armed only with .45 caliber automatic pistols, defended the battalion observation post against an overwhelming onslaught by enemy infantrymen in approximately platoon strength, supported by 20mm. flak and machinegun fire, who had infiltrated through the battalion's forward companies and were attacking the observation post with machinegun, machine pistol, and grenade fire at ranges as close as 10 yards. Despite a hail of fire from automatic weapons and grenade launchers, Technician 5th Grade Maxwell aggressively fought off advancing enemy elements and, by his calmness, tenacity, and fortitude, inspired his fellows to continue the unequal struggle. When an enemy hand grenade was thrown in the midst of his squad, Technician 5th Grade Maxwell unhesitatingly hurled himself squarely upon it, using his blanket and his unprotected body to absorb the full force of the explosion. This act of instantaneous heroism permanently maimed Technician 5th Grade Maxwell, but saved the lives of his comrades in arms and facilitated maintenance of vital military communications during the temporary withdrawal of the battalion's forward headquarters.

Maxwell currently lives in Bend, Oregon, the only living Medal of Honor recipient in that state, and is the director of the non-profit Bend Heroes Foundation.

William Kyle Carpenter (Born October 17, 1989)

Kyle Carpenter is a retired Marine who has been the youngest living service member to receive the Medal of Honor thus far. for his actions in Marjah, Helmand Province, Afghanistan in 2010. Carpenter was the youngest living Medal of Honor recipient at the time he received it. After enlisting in 2009, Carpenter was assigned to Fox Company, 2nd Battalion, 9th Marines, Regimental Combat Team One, 1st Marine Division (Forward), 1st Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward), in Helmand Province, Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. On November 21, 2010, while joining his team to fight off a Taliban attack in a small village the Marines had nicknamed Shadier between two villages nicknamed Shady and Shadiest, he suffered severe injuries to his face and right arm from the blast of an enemy hand grenade, including multiple shrapnel wounds and the loss of his right eye. According to the official Medal of Honor citation:

Lance Corporal Carpenter and a fellow Marine were manning a rooftop security position on the perimeter of Patrol Base Dakota when the enemy initiated a daylight attack with hand grenades, one of which landed inside their sandbagged position. Without hesitation and with complete disregard for his own safety, Lance Corporal Carpenter moved toward the grenade in an attempt to shield his fellow Marine from the deadly blast. When the grenade detonated, his body absorbed the brunt of the blast, severely wounding him, but saving the life of his fellow Marine.

In March 2011, the South Carolina legislature passed a resolution recognizing Carpenter's service, noting that he "suffered catastrophic wounds in the cause of freedom" and "has shown himself worthy of the name Marine." Corporal Carpenter received the Medal of Honor On June 19, 2014.

Hiroshi H. Miyamura (Born October 6, 1925)

The Army veteran, also known as Hershey Miyamura, is an unusual Medal of Honor recipient -- although he gained recognition for his heroic actions in the Korean War, official announcement that he had received the Medal of Honor was held back while he was a prisoner of war in Korea. Born in New Mexico to Japanese immigrant parents, Miyamura initially joined the Army in January 1945, and stayed in the Army Reserve after World War II. He was recalled to active duty during the Korean War, and was recognized for his actions on April 24–25, 1951, near Taejon-ni, Korea, while serving as a corporal in the 2nd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division:

Cpl. Miyamura, a member of Company H, distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action against the enemy. On the night of 24 April, Company H was occupying a defensive position when the enemy fanatically attacked threatening to overrun the position. Cpl. Miyamura, a machinegun squad leader, aware of the imminent danger to his men unhesitatingly jumped from his shelter wielding his bayonet in close hand-to-hand combat killing approximately 10 of the enemy. Returning to his position, he administered first aid to the wounded and directed their evacuation. As another savage assault hit the line, he manned his machinegun and delivered withering fire until his ammunition was expended. He ordered the squad to withdraw while he stayed behind to render the gun inoperative. He then bayoneted his way through infiltrated enemy soldiers to a second gun emplacement and assisted in its operation. When the intensity of the attack necessitated the withdrawal of the company Cpl. Miyamura ordered his men to fall back while he remained to cover their movement. He killed more than 50 of the enemy before his ammunition was depleted and he was severely wounded. He maintained his magnificent stand despite his painful wounds, continuing to repel the attack until his position was overrun. When last seen he was fighting ferociously against an overwhelming number of enemy soldiers.

Miraculously, Miyamura survived the battle and became a prisoner of war for 28 months. His was the first Medal of Honor to be classified Top Secret. Brigadier General Ralph Osborne would later explain during the official announcement of Miyamura's medal, "If the Reds knew what he had done to a good number of their soldiers just before he was taken prisoner, they might have taken revenge on this young man. He might not have come back." Miyamura was eventually rerepatriated to the United States in 1953 and honorably discharged from the military shortly thereafter. His medal was presented to him by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in October 1953 at the White House.

Bennie G. Adkins (Born February 1, 1934)

Still going strong at over 80 years old, Adkins was serving as an Intelligence Sergeant with Detachment A-102, 5th Special Forces Group in the Army when he gained recognition for his actions during combat operations at Camp A Shau in Vietnam from March 9 to 12, 1966:

When the camp was attacked by a large North Vietnamese and Viet Cong force in the early morning hours, Sergeant First Class Adkins rushed through intense enemy fire and manned a mortar position continually adjusting fire for the camp, despite incurring wounds as the mortar pit received several direct hits from enemy mortars. Upon learning that several soldiers were wounded near the center of camp, he temporarily turned the mortar over to another soldier, ran through exploding mortar rounds and dragged several comrades to safety. As the hostile fire subsided, Sergeant First Class Adkins exposed himself to sporadic sniper fire while carrying his wounded comrades to the camp dispensary.

During the early morning hours of March 10, 1966 enemy forces launched their main attack and within two hours, Sergeant First Class Adkins was the only man firing a mortar weapon. When all mortar rounds were expended, Sergeant First Class Adkins began placing effective recoilless rifle fire upon enemy positions. Despite receiving additional wounds from enemy rounds exploding on his position, Sergeant First Class Adkins fought off intense waves of attacking Viet Cong. Sergeant First Class Adkins eliminated numerous insurgents with small arms fire after withdrawing to a communications bunker with several soldiers. Running extremely low on ammunition, he returned to the mortar pit, gathered vital ammunition and ran through intense fire back to the bunker. After being ordered to evacuate the camp, Sergeant First Class Adkins and a small group of soldiers destroyed all signal equipment and classified documents, dug their way out of the rear of the bunker and fought their way out of the camp. While carrying a wounded soldier to the extraction point he learned that the last helicopter had already departed. Sergeant First Class Adkins led the group while evading the enemy until they were rescued by helicopter on March 12, 1966.

During the thirty eight hour battle and forty eight hours of escape and evasion, fighting with mortars, machine guns, recoilless rifles, small arms, and hand grenades, it was estimated that Sergeant First Class Adkins killed between one hundred thirty five and one hundred seventy five of the enemy while sustaining eighteen different wounds to his body.

Adkins retired from the Army in 1978 and has been CEO of Adkins Accounting Service, Inc., in Auburn, Alabama, for 22 years. Adkins has been married to his wife, Mary, for 59 years, and together they have raised five children.

Leo Keith Thorsness (Born February 14, 1932)

In 1966, then-Major Leo Thorsness was assigned to the Air Force's 357th Tactical Fighter Squadron in Thailand as a "Wild Weasel," charged with destroying enemy surface-to-air missiles and antiaircraft radar before the main strike force reached the target, thus protecting the strike force. On April 19, 1967, it was on one of these "Wild Weasel" missions that Maj. Thorsness gained recognition and was selected to receive a Medal of Honor:As pilot of an F-105 aircraft, Lieutenant Colonel Thorsness was on a surface-to-air missile suppression mission over North Vietnam. Lieutenant Colonel Thorsness and his wingman attacked and silenced a surface-to-air missile site with air-to-ground missiles and then destroyed a second surface-to-air missile site with bombs. In the attack on the second missile site, Lieutenant Colonel Thorsness’ wingman was shot down by intensive antiaircraft fire, and the two crewmembers abandoned their aircraft.

Lieutenant Colonel Thorsness circled the descending parachutes to keep the crewmembers in sight and relay their position to the Search and Rescue Center. During this maneuver, a MIG-17 was sighted in the area. Lieutenant Colonel Thorsness immediately initiated an attack and destroyed the MIG. Because his aircraft was low on fuel, he was forced to depart the area in search of a tanker.

Upon being advised that two helicopters were orbiting over the downed crew’s position and that there were hostile MIGs in the area posing a serious threat to the helicopters, Lieutenant Colonel Thorsness, despite his low fuel condition, decided to return alone through a hostile environment of surface-to-air missile and anti-aircraft defenses to the downed crew’s position. As he approached the area, he spotted four MIG-17 aircraft and immediately initiated an attack on the MIGs, damaging one and driving the others away from the rescue scene. When it became apparent that an aircraft in the area was critically low on fuel and the crew would have to abandon the aircraft unless they could reach a tanker, Lieutenant Colonel Thorsness, although critically short on fuel himself, helped to avert further possible loss of life and a friendly aircraft by recovering at a forward operating base, thus allowing the aircraft in emergency fuel condition to refuel safely.

Lieutenant Colonel Thorsness’ extraordinary heroism, self-sacrifice and personal bravery involving conspicuous risk of life were in the highest traditions of the military service, and have reflected great credit upon himself and the U.S. Air Force.

Though Thorsness was recognized with the Medal of Honor in 1967, he did not receive it until 1973. Eleven days after the mission cited above, he was shot down over North Vietnam and captured, along with his electronic warfare officer, Capt. Harold Johnson (who had also been with Maj. Thorsness on April 19 and was awarded the Air Force Cross for his part in that mission). Colonel Thorsness and Capt. Johnson were released on March 4, 1973 after six years as prisoners of war. Thorsness retired on October 25, 1973.


15 years ago, Navy SEAL Michael Murphy earned the Medal of Honor for his bravery during Operation Red Wings

Fifteen years ago, a team of four Navy SEALs fought through what was identified at the time as the deadliest day for U.S. forces since the start of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Lt. Michael Murphy, Gunner&aposs Mate 2nd Class Danny Dietz, Sonar Technician 2nd Class Matthew Axelson, and Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Marcus Luttrell embarked on Operation Red Wings on June 27, 2005, which later inspired the 2013 film Lone Survivor, based on Luttrell&aposs book of the same name.

On June 28, the team was confronted by an overwhelming enemy force, resulting in the death of all but Luttrell, as well as several other special operators whose helicopter was shot down while they were en route to help the embattled team. At the time, it was the greatest single loss of life for Naval Special Warfare since World War II.

Two years after the mission, in October 2007, Lt. Murphy was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his “selfless leadership, courageous actions, and extraordinary devotion to duty” that he displayed during the gunfight.

According to the Navy&aposs summary of action, the four SEALs were “deep behind enemy lines,” in difficult and rugged terrain in Afghanistan, on a reconnaissance mission scouting Ahmad Shah — a terrorist who was head of a guerrilla group aligned with the Taliban. During the mission, locals spotted the team and reported their position to Taliban fighters.

Soon, the four-man team came under attack and was severely outnumbered, facing over 50 combatants who “launched a well-organized, three-sided attack” on the SEALs, wounding each of them. They were pushed further and further into a ravine, forcing them to attempt to make their way down the side of the mountain.

With the situation only getting worse, Dietz “sought open air to place a distress call back to base,” but was shot in the hand. So Murphy — who was “suffering grave gunshot wounds” — took it upon himself to finish was Dietz had tried to do. The award citation says that Murphy “fought his way into open terrain” to be able to make the call, demonstrating “extreme composure … in the face of almost certain death.”

“This deliberate, heroic act deprived him of cover, exposing him to direct enemy fire,” his award citation says.

He was able to request assistance from the quick reaction force at Bagram Air Base, but while he was on the call, Murphy was shot in the back and dropped the transmitter.

“Murphy picked it back up, completed the call, and continued firing at the enemy who was closing in,” the action summary says. “Severely wounded, Lt. Murphy returned to his cover position with his men and continued the battle.”

Because of Murphy&aposs transmission, an MH-47 Chinook helicopter, carrying eight other SEALs along with eight Army Night Stalkers, responded to extract the four-man team alongside Army attack helicopters. But, the action summary explains, the “heavy weight” of the attack helicopters led the MH-47 to outrun them, meaning they would be advancing “into an active enemy area in daylight, without their attack support, and without the cover of night.”

They did it anyway, knowing time was of the essence if they were to save the embattled SEAL team. But on its way in, the MH-47 was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade. All 16 men on board were killed.

By the end of the battle, Dietz, Murphy, and Axelson had also been killed, and Luttrell had been “blasted over a ridge” and knocked unconscious. A while later, when he regained consciousness, Luttrell found he had no other option but to crawl down the side of the cliff he was on — despite having three cracked vertebrae, a bullet wound in one leg and shrapnel in both, and suffering from dehydration.

He was “too weak and injured” to make contact with the rescue helicopters that came to find him. He walked almost seven miles, keeping out of the enemy&aposs grasp for almost a day before he was taken in by locals and given shelter in a village nearby.

Despite repeated demands by the Taliban, the villagers refused to hand over Luttrell. One of the villagers eventually delivered a note from Luttrell to a Marine outpost, leading to “a massive operation” to rescue the SEAL on July 2nd.

The Navy&aposs action summary credits Murphy&aposs heroic actions as instrumental in Luttrell&aposs rescue.

“By his undaunted courage, intrepid fighting spirit and inspirational devotion to his men in the face of certain death, Lt. Murphy was able to relay the position of his unit, an act that ultimately led to the rescue of Luttrell and the recovery of the remains of the three who were killed in the battle,” the action summary says.

“The Naval Special Warfare (NSW) community will forever remember June 28, 2005, and the heroic efforts and sacrifices of our special operators. We hold with reverence the ultimate sacrifice that they made while engaged in that fierce firefight on the front lines of the global war on terrorism (GWOT).”

Haley Britzkyis the Army reporter for Task & Purpose, covering the daily happenings in the Army and how they impact soldiers and their families, as well as broader national security issues. Originally from Texas, Haley previously worked at Axios before joining Task & Purpose in January 2019. Contact the author here.


General History

Audie Murphy enlisted in the United States Army at age 17 to make something of himself. By the end of World War II, Audie Murphy's exploits had earned him every medal his country could give. He was the war's most decorated soldier and a national hero. Four years later, as a struggling actor in Hollywood, he turned his wartime experiences into a best selling book, To Hell and Back. He later starred in the film version of his book. He died in an airplane crash in Virginia while on a business trip.
His list of medals include:


Vicksburg Medal of Honor Recipients

1862-1895 Army Version of the Medal of Honor The Medal of Honor is the highest and most prestigious personal military decoration that a service member can earn. The medal is usually awarded by the President of the United States in the name of the United States Congress to service men and women who distinguished themselves by acts of valor.

The Medal of Honor was created by the US Navy in 1861 and named the "Medal of Valor." The US Army began issuing a Medal of Honor in 1862 to men who distinguished themselves "conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity" in combat with enemies of the United States.

The Medal of Honor is the oldest continuously issued combat decoation of the United States Armed Forces. To date, over 3,500 Medal of Honors have been awarded- less than half were awarded during the Civil War, and an astounding 120 Medal of Honor's were granted to troops during the siege of Vicksburg.

Noteable stories of Medal of Honor winners at Vicksburg include Orion P. Howe, who was awarded the medal at 14 years of age during the Union assaults on May 19, 1863, and the 78 men of the Forlorn Hope who received the Medal of Honor for their efforts to capture Stockade Redan on May 22, 1863.

The Confederate States of America established the Confederate Medal of Honor on October 13, 1862. During the Civil War, 48 men and one woman were honored with the award by the Confederacy, however due to a medal shortage, medals were not minted for more than 110 years. Captain Issac Newton Brown, of the CSS Arkansas was awarded the Confederate Medal of Honor in part due to the valor and leadership he showed during the Arkansas' attempt to relive the pressure from the US Navy on Vicksburg.

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Cincinnati, Ohio. Date of issue: 10 August 1895. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company I, 30th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 10 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at. ------. Birth: Franklin, Ind. Date of issue: 15 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company H, 8th Missouri Infantry Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at. Pekin, Tazwell County, Ill. Birth: Washlinaw, Mich. Date of issue: 31 August 1895. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company A, 57th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Upper Sandusky, Ohio. Birth: Kalida, Ohio. Date of issue: 13 April 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 3 May 1863. Entered service at: Adrian, Mich. Born: 1842, Germany. Date of issue: 6 November 1908. Citation: Was one of a party that volunteered and attempted to run the enemy's batteries with a steam tug and 2 barges loaded with subsistence stores.

Rank and organization: Private, Company F, 4th West Virginia Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Jackson County, W. Va. Birth: ------. Date of issue: 12 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company G, 8th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Trivolia, Peoria County, Ill. Birth: Peoria County, Ill. Date of issue: 31 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company H, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Guilford, Ind. Birth: Dearborn County, Ind. Date of issue: 11 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Quartermaster, U.S. Navy. Entered service at: Northampton, Mass. Born: 1841, Canada. Date of issue: 24 November 1916. G.O. No.: 17, 10 July 1863. Citation: Served as quartermaster on board the U.S.S. Cincinnati during the attack on the Vicksburg batteries and at the time of her sinking, 27 May 1863. Engaging the enemy in a fierce battle, the Cincinnati, amidst an incessant fire of shot and shell, continued to fire her guns to the last, though so penetrated by enemy shellfire that her fate was sealed. Conspicuously cool in making signals throughout the battle, Bois, after all the Cincinnati's staffs had been shot away, succeeded in nailing the flag to the stump of the forestaff to enable this proud ship to go down, "with her colors nailed to the mast.

Rank and organization: Private, Company C, 127th Illinois Infantry Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at Hampshire, Kane County, Ill. Birth. Erie County, N.Y. Date of issue. 21 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company A, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 19 May 1863. Entered service at: Cincinnati, Ohio. Birth: Boston, Mass. Date of issue: 24 August 1896. Citation: Voluntarily carried a verbal message from Col. A. C. Parry to Gen. Hugh Ewing through a terrific fire and in plain view of the enemy.

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 30th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Miami County, Ohio. Date of issue: 15 August 1894. Citation: Despite the death of his captain at his side during the assault he continued carrying his log to the defense ditch. While he was laying his log in place he was shot down and thrown into the water. Unmindful of his own wound he, despite the intense fire, dragged 5 of his comrades from the ditch, wherein they lay wounded, to a place of safety.

Rank and organization: Coxswain, U.S. Navy. Born: 1838, New York. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 32, 16 April 1864. Citation: Served as coxswain on board the U.S.S. Benton during the attack on Great Gulf Bay, 2 May 1863, and Vicksburg, 22 May 1863. Carrying out his duties with coolness and courage, Brownell served gallantly against the enemy as captain of a 9-inch gun in the attacks on Great Gulf and Vicksburg and as a member of the Battery Benton before Vicksburg.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company G, 4th West Virginia Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Fayette County, W. Va. Date of issue: 9 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company H, 54th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Cincinnati, Ohio. Date of issue: 12 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 113th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 27 April 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Birth: Campbell, N.Y. Date of issue: 8 July 1896. Citation: Voluntarily acted as a fireman on a steam tug which ran the blockade and passed the batteries under a heavy fire.

Rank and organization: Private, Company I, 30th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 14 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company A, 48th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Monmouth County, N.J. Date of issue: 25 February 1895. Citation: Saved his regimental flag also seized and threw a shell, with burning fuse, from among his comrades.

Rank and organization: Private, Company C, 20th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 April 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Fayette County, Pa., Date of issue: 23 September 1897. Citation: Voluntarily served as one of the crew of a transport that passed the forts under a heavy fire.

Rank and organization: Private, Company I, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Wilmington, Ind. Birth: Dearborn County, Ind. Date of issue: 15 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company G, 97th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Madison County, Ill. Birth: Merrimack, N.H. Date of issue: 31 January 1896. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company C, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Hartford, Ind. Birth: Dearborn County, Ind. Date of issue: 11 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Landsman, U.S. Navy. Born: 1838, New York. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 17, 10 July 1863. Citation: Served on board the U.S.S. Cincinnati during the attack on the Vicksburg batteries and at the time of her sinking. Engaging the enemy in a fierce battle, the Cincinnati, amidst an incessant fire of shot and shell, continued to fire her guns to the last, though so penetrated by shellfire that her fate was sealed. Serving bravely during this action, Corcoran was conspicuously cool under the fire of the enemy, never ceasing to fight until this proud ship went down, "her colors nailed to the mast."

Rank and organization: Ordinary Seaman, U.S. Navy. Born: 1839, New York, N.Y. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 11, 3 April 1863. Citation: Cotton served on board the U.S.S. Baron De Kalb in the Yazoo River expedition, 23 to 27 December 1862. Proceeding under orders up the Yazoo River, the Baron De Kalb, with the object of capturing or destroying the enemy's transports, came upon the steamers John Walsh, R. J. Locklan, Golden Age and the Scotland, sunk on a bar where they were ordered to be burned. Continuing up the river, the Baron De Kalb was fired upon but, upon returning the fire, caused the enemy's retreat. Returning down the Yazoo, she destroyed and captured large quantities of enemy equipment and several prisoners. Serving bravely throughout this action, Cotton, as coxswain "distinguished himself in the various actions."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company K, 55th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Prairie City, Ill. Birth: Guernsey County, Ohio. Date of issue: 31 December 1892. Citation: Bravely defended the colors planted on the outward parapet of Fort Hill.

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 8th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Bloomington, McLean County, Ill. Birth: Washington County, Pa. Date of issue: 30 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Assistant Surgeon, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 3 May 1863. Entered service at: Cincinnati, Ohio. Birth: Middlebury, Vt. Date of issue: 17 October 1892. Citation: Voluntarily attempted to run the enemy's batteries.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company H, 116th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Stonington, Christian County, Ill. Birth: Marion, Ill. Date of issue: 26 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 57th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Dallasburg, Ohio. Date of issue: 2 January 1895. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company D, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Oxford, Ohio. Birth: Butler County, Ohio. Date of issue: 10 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company A, 97th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Gillespie, Macoupin County, Ill. Birth: Scotland. Date of issue: 29 January 1896. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Boatswain's Mate, U.S. Navy. Born: 1840, Scotland. Accredited to: Illinois. G.O. No.: 17, 10 July 1863. Citation: Served on board the U.S.S. Cincinnati during the attack on the Vicksburg batteries and at the time of her sinking, 27 May 1863. Engaging the enemy in a fierce battle, the Cincinnati, amidst an incessant fire of shot and shell, continued to fire her guns to the last, though so penetrated by enemy shellfire that her fate was sealed. Serving courageously throughout this action, Dow carried out his duties to the end on this proud ship that went down with "her colors nailed to the mast."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Chicago Mercantile Battery, Illinois Light Artillery. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Birth: Detroit, Mich. Date of issue: 15 January 1895. Citation: Carried with others by hand a cannon up to and fired it through an embrasure of the enemy's works.

Rank and organization: Private, Company E, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Weston, W. Va. Birth: Lewis County, W. Va. Date of issue: 21 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company C, lowa Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Shells burg, lowa. Birth: Coshocton, Ohio. Date of issue: 12 September 1891. Citation: Carried the colors in advance of his regiment and was shot down while attempting to plant them on the enemy's works.

Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, Company B, 55th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Birth: Monmouth, Pa. Date of issue: 2 September 1893. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company G, 6th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: St. Louis, Mo. Birth: Pittsfield, Ill. Date of issue: 19 June 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company E, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 2,2 May 1863. Entered service at: Osgood, Ind. Birth: France. Date of issue: 13 August 1894. Citation. Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company I, 97th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Alton, Madison County, Ill. Birth: Scotland. Date of issue: 24 October 1895. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company H, 37th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Cleveland, Ohio. Birth. Switzerland. Date of issue: 14 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 6th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Pilot Knob, Iron County, Mo. Birth: Madison County, Mo. Date of issue: 30 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Captain, Company F, 116th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Pleasant Hill, Ill. Birth: France. Date of issue: 24 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company E., 22d lowa Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Ashland, lowa. Birth: Mason County, W. Va. Date of issue: 3 August 1897. Citation: Led his company in the assault on the enemy's works and gained the parapet, there receiving 3 very severe wounds. He lay all day in the sun, was taken prisoner, and had his leg amputated without anesthetics.

Rank and organization: Private, Company E, 127th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: St. Charles, Kane County, Ill. Birth: St. Charles, Kane County, Ill. Date of issue: 9 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 113th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Elk Grove, Ill. Birth: Elk Grove, Ill, Date of issue: 6 September 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Battery A, 1st Missouri Light Artillery. Place and date: At Grand Gulf, Miss., 28-29 April 1863. Entered service at: St. Louis, Mo. Birth: New York, N.Y. Date of issue: 10 March 1896. Citation: With two comrades voluntarily took position on board the steamer Cheeseman, in charge of all the guns and ammunition of the battery, and remained in charge of the same for a considerable time while the steamer was unmanageable and subjected to a heavy fire from the enemy.

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Clinton County, Ohio. Date of issue: 21 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party.

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 3 May 1863. Entered service at: Adrian, Mich. Birth: 1843, Germany. Date of issue: 3 January 1907. Citation: Was one of a party which volunteered and attempted to run the enemy's batteries with a steam tug and 2 barges loaded with subsistence stores.

Rank and organization: Quartermaster, U.S. Navy. Born: 1833, Scotland. Accredited to: Massachusetts. G.O. No.: 17, 10 July 1863. Citation: Serving as quartermaster on board the U.S.S. Cincinnati during the attack on the Vicksburg batteries and at the time of her sinking, 27 May 1863. Engaging the enemy in a fierce battle, the Cincinnati, amidst an incessant fire of shot and shell, continued to fire her guns to the last although so penetrated by enemy shell fire that her fate was sealed. Conspicuously gallant during this action, Hamilton, severely wounded at the wheel, returned to his post and had to be sent below, to hear the incessant roar of guns as the gallant ship went down, "her colors nailed to the mast."

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Battery A, 1st Missouri Light Artillery. Place and date: At Grand Gulf, Miss., 28-29 April 1863. Entered service at: St. Louis, Mo. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 10 March 1896. Citation: With two comrades voluntarily took position on board the steamer Cheeseman, in charge of all the guns and ammunition of the battery, and remained in charge of the same for considerable time while the steamer was unmanageable and subjected to a heavy fire from the enemy.

Rank and organization: Private, Company E, 37th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chillicothe, Ohio. Birth: Chillicothe, Ohio. Date of issue: 19 November 1897. Citation: Voluntarily and under fire went to the rescue of a wounded comrade Iying between the lines, gave him water, and brought him off the field.

Rank and organization: Private, Company K, 30th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Olive, Ohio. Birth: Noble County, Ohio. Date of issue: 10 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Seaman, U.S. Navy. Entered service at: Plymouth, Mass. Born: 9 July 1838, Plymouth, Mass. Citation: On board the U.S.S. Sciota prior to the battle Vicksburg, on 28 June 1862. Struck by a bullet which severed his left arm above the elbow, Hathaway displayed exceptional courage as his ship sustained numerous damaging hits from stem to stern while proceeding down the river to fight the battle of Vicksburg.

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Farmers Retreat, Ind. Birth: Dearborn, Ind. Date of issue: 26 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company B, 113th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Kankakee, Ill. Birth: Sunfish, Ohio. Date of issue: 9 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company D, 99th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Barry, Pike County, Ill. Birth: Canada. Date of issue: 1 April 1898. Citation: When his regiment fell back in the assault, repulsed, this soldier continued to advance and planted the flag on the parapet, where he was captured by the enemy.

Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, Company I, 21st lowa Infantry. Place and date: At Champion Hill, Miss., 16 May 1863. Entered service at: Cascade, lowa. Birth: England. Date of issue: 15 March 1893. Citation: By skillful and brave management captured 3 of the enemy's pickets.

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 3 May 1863. Entered service at: Adrian, Mich. Born: 1841, Hillsdale, Mich. Date of issue: 13 December 1907. Citation: Was one of a party that volunteered and attempted to run the enemy's batteries with a steam tug and 2 barges loaded with subsistence stores.

Rank and organization: Musician, Company C, 55th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 19 May 1863. Entered service at: Woken, Ill. Birth: Portage County, Ohio. Date of issue: 23 April 1896. Citation: A drummer boy, 14 years of age, and severely wounded and exposed to a heavy fire from the enemy, he persistently remained upon the field of battle until he had reported to Gen. W. T. Sherman the necessity of supplying cartridges for the use of troops under command of Colonel Malmborg.

Rank and organization: Private, Company H, 6th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Jefferson County, Mo. Birth: Montgomery County, Ind. Date of issue: 12 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Fireman, U.S. Navy. Born: 1841, New York, N.Y. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 32, 16 April 1864. Citation: Fireman on board the U.S.S. Carondelet, Deer Creek Expedition, March 1863. Carrying out his duties gallantly, Huskey volunteered to aid in the rescue of the tug Ivy under the fire of the enemy, and set forth general meritorious conduct during this hazardous mission

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company D, 127th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Gardner, Ill. Birth: Pennsylvania, Date of issue: 9 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company F, 54th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Hamilton County, Ohio. Birth: Scotland. Date of issue: 5 April 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Seaman, U.S. Navy. Biography not available. G.O. No.: 17, 10 July 1863. Citation: Served on board the U.S.S. Cincinnati during the attack on the Vicksburg batteries and at the time of her sinking, 27 May 1863. Engaging the enemy in a fierce battle, the Cincinnati, amidst an incessant fire of shot and shell, continued to fire her guns to the last, though so penetrated by shell fire that her fate was sealed. Serving bravely during this action, Jenkins was conspicuously cool under the fire of the enemy, never ceasing to fight until this proud ship went down, "her colors nailed to the mast."

Rank and organization: Private, Company E, 37th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chillicothe, Ohio. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 14 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company B, 113th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Martintonk, Iroquois County, Ill. Birth: Clinton, Ohio. Date of issue: 9 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 116th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Assumption, Ill. Birth: Delaware County, Ohio. Date of issue: 9 August 1894. Citation. Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company K, 8th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Warsaw County, Ill. Birth: Indiana County, Pa. Date of issue: 16 August 1884. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company I, 54th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Fayette County, Ohio. Date of issue: 13 June 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company A, 49th Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Black River Bridge, Miss., 17 May 1863. Entered service at: Dubois County, Ind. Birth: Dubois County, Ind. Date of issue: 12 February 1894. Citation: Voluntarily led the company in a charge and was the first to enter the enemy's works, taking a number of prisoners.

Rank and organization: Private, Company C, 13th U.S. Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 19 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Venango County, Pa. Date of issue: 13 May 1899. Citation: Voluntarily and at the risk of his life, under a severe fire of the enemy, aided and assisted to the rear an officer who had been severely wounded and left on the field.

Rank and organization: Major, 8th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: St. Louis, Mo. Born: 14 September 1838, Niagara, County, N.Y. Date of issue: 31 January 1894. Citation: Seized the colors when the color bearer was killed and bore them himself in the assault.

Rank and Organization: Private, Chicago Mercantile Battery, Illinois Light Artillery. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Birth: Europe. Date of issue: 15 January 1895. Citation: Carried with others by hand a cannon up to and fired it through an embrasure of the enemy's works.

Rank and organization: Private, Chicago Mercantile Battery, Illinois Light Artillery. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Birth: Herkimer County, N.Y. Date of issue: 20 July 1897. Citation: Carried with others by hand a cannon up to and fired it through an embrasure of the enemy's works.

Rank and organization: Private, Company C, 6th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Vandalia, Ill. Birth: France. Date of issue: 14 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company I, 55th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Mendota, Ill. Birth: Rensselaer County, N.Y. Date of issue: 2 September 1893. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Captain of the Forecastle, U.S. Navy. Born: 1837, New Orleans, La. Accredited to: Pennsylvania. G.O. No.: 11, 3 April 1863. Citation: Serving on board the U.S.S. Baron De Kalb, Yazoo River Expedition, 23 to 27 December 1862. Proceeding under orders up the Yazoo River, the U.S.S. Baron De Kalb, with the object of capturing or destroying the enemy's transports, came upon the steamers John Walsh, R. J. Locklan, Golden Age and the Scotland sunk on a bar where they were ordered fired. Continuing up the river, she was fired on, but upon returning the fire, caused the enemy's retreat. Returning down the Yazoo, she destroyed and captured larger quantities of enemy equipment and several prisoners. Serving bravely throughout this action, Leon, as captain of the forecastle, "distinguished himself in the various actions."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company B, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 3 May 1863. Entered service at: Adrian, Mich. Born: 14 December 1842, Van Buren Township, Wayne County, Mich. Date of issue: 17 April 1917. Citation: Was one of a party that volunteered and attempted to run the enemy's batteries with a steam tug and two barges loaded with subsistence stores.

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 30th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Muskingum County, Ohio. Date of issue: 10 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization. Private, Company K, 55th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Elmwood, Ill. Birth: Illinois. Date of issue: 2 September 1893. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 30th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Ohio. Birth: Harrison County, Ohio. Date of issue: 13 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company I, 127th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Rutland, La Salle County, Ill. Birth: Kane, Ill. Date of issue: 10 January 1895. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Boatswain's Mate, U.S. Navy. Born: 1817, Scotland. Accredited to: Massachusetts. G.O. No.: 11 , 3 April 1 863. Citation: Serving on board the U.S.S. Baron De Kalb, Yazoo River Expedition, 23 to 27 December 1862. Proceeding under orders up the Yazoo River, the U.S.S. Baron De Kalb, with the object of capturing or destroying the enemy's transports, came upon the steamers John Walsh, R. J. Locklan, Golden Age, and the Scotland, sunk on a bar where they were ordered burned. Continuing up the river, she was fired on but, upon returning the fire, caused the enemy's retreat. Returning down the Yazoo, she destroyed and captured large quantities of enemy equipment and several prisoners. Serving bravely throughout this action, McDonald, as boatswain's mate, "distinguished himself in the various actions."

Rank and organization: Private, Company F, 54th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: New York, N.Y. Date of issue: 28 June 1894. Citation. Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 30th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Jefferson County, Ohio. Date of issue: 15 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Chicago Mercantile Battery, Illinois Light Artillery. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 15 January 1895. Citation: Carried with others by hand a cannon up to and fired it through an embrasure of the enemy's work.

Rank and organization: Seaman, U.S. Navy. Born: 1837, Cincinnati, Ohio. Accredited to: Ohio. G.O. No.: 17, 10 July 1863. Citation: Serving on board the U.S.S. Cincinnati during the attack on the Vicksburg batteries and at the time of her sinking, 27 May 1863. Engaging the enemy in a fierce battle, the Cincinnati amidst, an incessant fire of shot and shell, continued to fire her guns to the last, though so penetrated by shellfire that her fate was sealed. Serving bravely during this action, McHugh was conspicuously cool under the fire of the enemy, never ceasing to fire until this proud ship went down, "her colors nailed to the mast."

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 113th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Geneva, Kane County, Ill. Birth: Bellevue, Ohio. Date of Issue: 20 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Boatswain's Mate, U.S. Navy. Born: 1834, Boston, Mass. Accredited to: Massachusetts. G.O. No.: 32, 16 April 1864. Citation: Serving as boatswain's mate on board the U.S.S. Benton during the attack on Haines Bluff, Yazoo River, 27 December 1862. Wounded during the hour_and_a_half engagement in which the enemy had the dead range of the vessel and was punishing her with heavy fire, Moore served courageously in carrying lines to the shore until the Benton was ordered to withdraw.

Rank and organization: Private, Company K, 55th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Bridgers Corner, Ill. Birth: Mercer County, Pa. Date of issue: 2 September 1893. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Coxswain, U.S. Navy. Entered service at: Lansingburg, N.Y. Born: 3 November 1842, Ireland G.O. No.: 59, 22 June 1865. Citation: Serving as coxswain on board the U.S.S. Carondelet, Morrison was commended for meritorious conduct in general and especially for his heroic conduct and his inspiring example to the crew in the engagement with the rebel ram Arkansas, Yazoo River, 15 July 1862. When the Carondelet was badly cut up, several of her crew killed, many wounded and others almost suffocated from the effects of escaped steam, Morrison was the leader when boarders were called on deck, and the first to return to the guns and give the ram a broadside as she passed. His presence of mind in time of battle or trial is reported as always conspicuous and encouraging.

Rank and organization: Boatswain's Mate, U.S. Navy. Born: 1836, Ireland. Accredited to: Maryland. G.O. No.: 11, 3 April 1863. Citation: Serving as boatswain's mate on board the U.S.S. Benton during the Yazoo River Expedition, 23 to 27 December 1863. Taking part in the hour_and_a_half engagement with the enemy at Drumgould's Bluff, 27 December, Morton served courageously throughout the battle against the hostile forces, who had the dead range of the vessel and were punishing her with heavy fire, until the Benton was ordered to withdraw.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company I, 31st Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Pekin, Ill. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 14 August 1893. Citation: Voluntarily crossed the line of heavy fire of Union and Confederate forces, carrying a message to stop the firing of one Union regiment on another.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company B, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 3 May 1863. Entered service at: Adrian, Mich. Born: 4 March 1842, Lanawee, Mich. Date of issue: 15 February 1909. Citation: Was one of a party that volunteered and attempted to run the enemy's batteries with a steam tug and 2 barges loaded with subsistence stores.

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 4th West Virginia Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Ames, Ohio. Birth:------. Date of issue: 27 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 8th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Clinton, DeWitt County, Ill. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 12 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, Company A, 11th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. At Fort DeRussey, La., 14 March 1864. Entered service at: Illinois. Born: 30 April 1830, Ireland. Date of issue. 11 September 1897. Citation: Voluntarily joined the color guard in the assault on the enemy's works when he saw indications of wavering and caused the colors of his regiment to be planted on the parapet. Voluntarily placed himself in the ranks of an assaulting column (being then on staff duty) and rode with it into the enemy's works, being the only mounted officer present, was twice wounded in battle.

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 58th Ohio Infantry Place and date: At Shiloh, Tenn. Vicksburg, Miss., etc., 1862 and 1863. Entered service at: Columbus, Ohio. Birth: Lautenburg, Prussia. Date of issue: 2 August 1879. Citation: Gallantry in actions.

Rank and organization: Private, Company K, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: at Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Holton, Ind. Birth: Jefferson County, Ind. Date of issue: 13 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 4th West Virginia Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Mason City, W. Va. Birth: ------. Date of issue: 16 August 1894 Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company C, 30th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Meigs County, Ohio. Date of issue: 14 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Battery A, 1st Missouri Light Artillery. Place and date: At Grand Gulf, Miss., 28_29 April 1863. Entered service at: St. Louis, Mo. Birth: Prussia. Date of issue: 10 March 1896. Citation: With 2 comrades voluntarily took position on board the steamer Cheeseman, in charge of all the guns and ammunition of the battery, and remained in charge of the same, although the steamer became unmanageable and was exposed for some time to a heavy fire from the enemy.

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 3 May 1863. Entered service at: Adrian, Mich. Born: 29 February 1840, Monroe County, Mich. Date of issue: 5 April 1917. Citation: Was one of a party that volunteered and attempted to run the enemy's batteries with a steam tug and 2 barges loaded with subsistence stores.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company A, 77th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Peoria, Ill. Birth: Southbridge, Mass. Date of issue: 4 April 1898. Citation: Carried, with others, by hand, a cannon up to and fired it through an embrasure of the enemy's works.

Rank and organization: Private, Company H, 8th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Pekin, Tazwell County, Ill. Birth: Union County, Pa. Date of issue: 12 December 1895. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company H, 37th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Liverpool, Ohio. Date of issue: 15 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Boatswain's Mate, U.S. Navy. Born: 1832 Scotland. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 11, 3 April 1863. Citation: Serving on board the U.S.S. Baron de Kalb, Yazoo River Expedition, 23 to 27 December 1862. Proceeding under orders up the Yazoo River, the U.S.S. Baron de Kalb, with the object of capturing or destroying the enemy's transports, came upon the steamers John Walsh, R. J. Locklan, Golden Age, and the Scotland sunk on a bar where they were ordered fired. Continuing up the river, she was fired on by the enemy, but upon returning the fire, caused the rebels to retreat. Returning down the Yazoo, she destroyed and captured large quantities of enemy equipment and several prisoners. Serving bravely throughout this action, Robinson, as boatswain's mate, "distinguished himself in the various actions."

Rank and organization: Private, Company A, 37th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Cleveland, Ohio. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 10 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company A, 116th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Oakley, Macon County, Ill. Birth: Cincinnati, Ohio. Date of issue. 26 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, 55th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Prairie City, Ill. Birth: Fulton County, Ill. Date of issue: 2 September 1893. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 116th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Maroa, Ill. Birth: Butler County, Ohio. Date of issue: 14 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party.

Rank and organization: Private, Company A, 30th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 9 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company C, 37th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Wapakoneta, Ohio. Birth: Virginia. Date of issue: 10 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company F, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at. Poston, Ind. Birth: Redding, N.Y. Date of issue: 9 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company F, 116th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chencys Grove, Ill. Birth: Onondaga County, N.Y. Date of issue: 10 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party. "

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Sunmans, Ind. Birth: Newport, Ky. Date of issue: 12 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Chicago Mercantile Battery, Illinois Light Artillery. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Birth: New York, N.Y. Date of issue: 21 December 1894. Citation: Carried with others by hand a cannon up to and fired it through an embrasure of the enemy's works.

Rank and organization. First Lieutenant, Company C, 6th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Birth. Germany. Date of issue: 9 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 83d Indiana Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Sunmans, Ind. Birth: Dearborn County, Ind. Date of issue: 9 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company H, 4th West Virginia Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863.Entered service at: Kanawha County, W. Va. Born: 14 February 1838, Kanawha County, W. Va. Date of issue: 25 February 1895. Citation: Gallantry in charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company I, 54th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 14 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 3 May 1863. Entered service at: Adrian, Mich. Born: 11 October 1841, Monroe County, Mich. Date of issue: 12 September 1911. Citation: Was one of a party that volunteered and attempted to run the enemy's batteries with a steam tug and 2 barges loaded with subsistence stores.

Rank and organization: Captain of the Forecastle, U.S. Navy. Born: 1812, Maine. Accredited to: Massachusetts. G.O. No.: 32, 16 April 1865. Citation: Served as captain of the forecastle on board the U.S.S. Louisville at the capture of the Arkansas Post, 10 and 11 January 1863. Carrying out his duties as captain of a 9_inch gun, Talbott was conspicuous for ability and bravery throughout this engagement with the enemy.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company C, 45th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 25 June 1863. Entered service at: Galena, Jo Daviess County, Ill. Birth: Jo Daviess County, Ill. Date of issue: 1 September 1893. Citation: Was the first to plant the Union colors upon the enemy's works.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company G, 127th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 9 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 8th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: St. Louis, Mo. Born: 1840, Cedar Falls, N.C. Date of issue: 3 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party." He carried his regiment's flag and tried to borrow a gun to defend it.

Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, Company B, 11th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg Miss., 22 April 1863. Entered service at: Lacon, Marshall County, Ill. Birth: Lacon, Ill. Date of issue: 1 April 1898. Citation: Served gallantly as a volunteer with the crew of the steamer Horizon that, under a heavy fire, passed the Confederate batteries.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company F, 8th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: St. Louis, Mo. Born: 1844, Clear Spring, Md. Date of issue: 14 December 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company C, 116th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Macon County, Ill. Birth: Romney, W. Va. Date of issue: 27 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Captain, Company B, 47th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 3 May 1863. Entered service at: Adrian, Mich. Born: 9 December 1840, Adrian, Mich. Date of issue: 2 January 1895. Citation: Voluntarily commanded the expedition which, under cover of darkness, attempted to run the enemy's batteries.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company E, 55th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Lemont, Ill. Birth: Cook County, Ill. Date of issue: 2 September 1893. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 54th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Cincinnati, Ohio. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 11 May 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Captain, Chicago Mercantile Battery, Illinois Light Artillery. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Born: 1833, Ireland. Date of issue: 15 January 1895. Citation: Carried with others by hand a cannon up to and fired it through an embrasure of the enemy's works.

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 116th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Decatur, Macon County, Ill. Birth: Macon County, Ill. Date of issue: 11 August 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Rank and organization: Captain, Company F, 56th Ohio Infantry. Place and date: At Champion Hill, or Bakers Creek, Miss., 16 May 1863. Entered service at: Lancaster, Ohio. Born: 2 April 1830, Scioto County, Ohio. Date of issue: 17 November 1887. Citation: Having been badly wounded in the breast and captured, he made a prisoner of his captor and brought him into camp.

Rank and organization: Signal Quartermaster, U.S. Navy. Born: 1837, New York, N.Y. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 11, 3 April 1863. Citation: Serving as quartermaster on board the U.S.S. Benton during the Yazoo River Expedition, 23 to 27 December 1862. Taking part in the hour_and_a_half engagement with the enemy at Drumgould's Bluff, 27 December, Williams served courageously throughout that battle against hostile forces in which the enemy had the dead range of the vessel and were punishing her with heavy fire and, for various other action in which he took part during the Yazoo River Expedition.

Rank and organization: Colonel, 4th Iowa Infantry. Place and date: At Chickasaw Bayou, Miss., 29 December 1862. Entered service at: Des Moines, Iowa. Born: 8 February 1829, Columbia, Adair County, Ky. Date of issue: 17 January 1895.Citation: Led his regiment against a superior force, strongly entrenched, and held his ground when all support had been withdrawn.

Rank and organization: Captain, Company A, 97th Illinois Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Woodburn, Macoupin County, Ill. Birth: Cumberland, N.J. Date of issue: 12 December 1895. Citation: Led the "volunteer storming party," which made a most gallant assault upon the enemy's works.

Rank and organization: Boatswain's Mate, U.S. Navy. Born: 1823, England. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 17, 10 July 1863. Citation: Serving on board the U.S.S. Pittsburg, Mississippi River, 29 April 1863. Engaging the enemy batteries at Grand Gulf, the U.S.S. Pittsburg, although severely damaged and suffering many personnel casualties, continued to fire her batteries until ordered to withdraw. Taking part in a similar action after nightfall, the U.S.S. Pittsburg received further damage, but receiving no personnel casualities in the latter action. Woon showed courage and devotion to duty throughout these bitter engagements.

Rank and organization: Private, Company A, 8th Missouri Infantry. Place and date: At Vicksburg, Miss., 22 May 1863. Entered service at: Hannibal, Mo. Birth: Fayette County, Pa. Date of issue: 14 July 1894. Citation: Gallantry in the charge of the "volunteer storming party."

Compiled by Michelle Riter, 1999.
Sources: The Medal of Honor of the United States Army, Washington: Government Printing Office, 1948.
Medal of Honor, 1861-1949, Navy Department, 1950.


Design & Symbolism

The symbolism in the Medal of Honor has changed very little since the Navy created the first Medal, minted at the Philadelphia Mint at the request of Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles. The Philadelphia firm of William Wilson & Sons produced the winning design.

The design included an inverted, 5-pointed star with a cluster of laurel leaves (for victory), mixed with oak (for strength), on each of the star’s five points. Thirty-four stars, equal to the number of states in the U.S. in 1862 (including the 11 Confederate states) surrounded the insignia. The stars are also symbolic of the "heavens and the divine goal which man has aspired to" according to Charles Thompson, Secretary of the Continental Congress in 1777.

Two images were engraved inside the circle of stars. Minerva, the Roman goddess of wisdom and war, is on the right. The owl perched on her helmet represents wisdom. In the Roman tradition, her left hand holds rods and an ax blade, symbolic of authority. In her right hand is the shield of the Union of states (similar to our seal.)

A man clutching snakes in his hands, representing Discord, recoils from Minerva. The insignia came to be known as "Minerva Repulsing Discord," appropriate in the context of the Civil War’s discord.

The Medal’s ribbon was originally a blue bar with 13 red and white stripes running vertically, representing the original 13 colonies. White represents purity and innocence red represents hardiness, valor and blood blue signifies vigilance, perseverance and justice. The stripes also represent the rays of the sun.

The Army Medal

The Army MOH was created soon after the original Navy MOH in 1862. The eagle, a symbol of the United States, perched on a cannon, grasping a saber in its talons.

In 1904, a new version of the Medal appeared, called the Gillespie version for its designer, Medal recipient Gen. Gillespie. A simple portrait of a helmeted Goddess of War replaced "Minerva repelling Discord." The red, white and blue ribbon was replaced with light blue and 13 white stars.

Instead of an inverted star, the 1919 Tiffany Cross version of the MOH had a Maltese Cross, with eight points to symbolize the eight virtues of a knight. The configuration of the cross itself represents the four cardinal directions and the sun. This unpopular design was discontinued in 1942.

The Air Force Medal

In 1965, the new Air Force Medal appeared. It replaced Minerva with the Statue of Liberty, wearing a pointed crown instead of a helmet. While she stands for liberty, she is derived from the imagery of Semiramis, wife of Nimrod, and Queen of Babylon. The mythical Semiramis, who may have been loosely based on a historical figure, was famed for beauty, strength, and wisdom and was said to have built the famous Hanging Gardens of Babylon and reigned for 42 years.

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Just as the Medal of Honor itself has grown and developed since 1862, so to has the society that represents the men who wear it. Learn about our Society, the Foundation and the Museum.
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This is what Mongol MREs looked like

Posted On January 28, 2019 18:40:27

It is believed that Napoleon who coined the phrase “An army marches on its stomach.”

The adage was as true then as it was in ancient times, and for the Mongols who traveled thousands of miles to conquer and plunder, eating was a daunting task.

Because of their lineage as nomads and herders, the Mongols perfected how to travel light and still be able to fill their bellies. Sure they lived off their conquered lands, but between engagements they had their own version of berserker Rip-Its.

For Mongols on the move, the food they carried was usually dried. The hordes would carry dehydrated foods like dried meat, dried curd, and 10 pounds of milk dried down to a paste.

Take the dried milk for instance. To make it, the Mongols would evaporate the milk in the sun in which it turned into a chalk-like substance that made it easy to transport. Once mixed with water, the dried milk paste turned into a low-carb fatty and quite possibly the world’s first protein shake that would suppress his appetite.

The Mongols used mares milk to build their version of a protein shake

Another use of the milk was turning it into an alcoholic drink known as ” kumiss” or “airagh.” This was their preferred drink and was made from mare’s milk. Rubruck mentions that the Mongols made kumiss by using “a great quantity of milk, which is as sweet as cow’s as long as it is fresh, they pour it into a big skin or bottle, and they set to churning it with a stick prepared for that purpose, and which is as big as a man’s head at its lower extremity and hollowed out and when they have beaten it sharply it begins to boil up like new wine and to sour or ferment.”

But when winter arrived, food became scarce for the horses, so they drank up all the milk themselves. With the lack of dairy, the Mongols sought other foods — ones that at time appeared stomach churning. The diet of a Mongol warrior involved just about everything that walked or crawled. According to Marco Polo:

According to the 13th-century traveler Giovanni da Pian del Carpini:

If rations really got low, Marco Polo states that on “occasion they will sustain themselves on the blood of their horses, opening a vein and letting the blood jet into their mouths, drinking till they have had enough, and then staunching it.” However, a Mongol warrior knew not to do this or to drink from the horse too long. Horse blood was the last resort.

Dogs, horses, bugs…even people sometimes made up the Mongol horde diet. (Photo By Matthew Paris – Chronica Majora, Public Domain)

Mongols lived on what we call today a paleo diet, but calling it “ketogenic” diet sounds more accurate, as it consists of high-fat, adequate-protein, and low-carbs. Such a diet based on protein leaves one full. Moreover, the Chinese who ruled the Jin Empire in northeastern China noted to their surprise that no puff of smoke came from the Mongol encampment and noticed that the warriors were able to survive off little food and water for long periods.

What the Chinese soon learned is that their soldiers could not go as long as the Mongols due to their dependence on carbs. Without a steady amount of carbs to stay energized, the Mongols could go for a few days before hunger set in since their bodies used the fats and proteins as energy. Overall, the Mongols were not fussy eaters as the accounts show.

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