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Today's Medal of Honor Moment for 30 July

We start with the Civil War, and 23 Medals for the Battle of the Crater (warning - turn your sound down, annoying music). , plus two others for other fights. There are two more Medals for actions at The Crater, which were awarded for multiple actions. I will list those on the day of the last action the Medal was issued for.

The Civil War has several battles where a large number of  Medals are awarded - because not only was the Medal new (it was established in 1863) it was the *only* award of it's type.  So, today, many of these Medals would be covered by the Bronze Star with V, Silver Star and Distinguished Service Cross.  There is another thing to consider, especially when comparing to the current environment of the Global War On Terror/Contingency Operations - in the Civil War, the big fights had tens of thousands of people closing, or attempting to close, to hand-to-hand combat.  In the post-invasion-of-Iraq fighting rarely do you have a thousand combatants in a fight (2nd Fallujah is a good example) the fights are usually small unit actions, involving fewer than 100 troops combined.  There are both fewer people engaged and fewer people observing the engagements.  There are simply many Medal moments that... no one noticed.


CATLIN, ISAAC S.

Rank and organization: Colonel, 109th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Oswego, N.Y. Birth: New York. Date of issue: 13 January 1899. Citation: In a heroic effort to rally the disorganized troops was disabled by a severe wound. While being carried from the field he recovered somewhat and bravely started to return to his command, when he received a second wound, which necessitated amputation of his right leg.

COHN, ABRAHAM

Rank and organization: Sergeant Major, 6th New Hampshire Infantry. Place and date: At Wilderness, Va., 6 May 1864; At the mine, Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Campton, N.H. Birth: Guttentag, Silesia, Prussia. Date of issue: 24 August 1865. Citation: During Battle of the Wilderness rallied and formed, under heavy fire, disorganized and fleeing troops of different regiments. At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864, bravely and coolly carried orders to the advanced line under severe fire.

DAVIDSON, ANDREW
Rank and organization: First Lieutenant
, Company H, 30th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At the mine, Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Otsego County, N.Y. Born: 12 February 1840, Scotland. Date of issue: 17 October 1892. Citation: One of the first to enter the enemy's works, where, after his colonel, major, and one-third the company officers had fallen, he gallantly assisted in rallying and saving the remnant of the command.

DE PUY, CHARLES H.

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company H, 1st Michigan Sharpshooters. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: St. Louis, Mo. Birth: Sherman, Mich. Date of issue: 30 July 1896. Citation: Being an old artillerist, aided General Bartlett in working the guns of the dismantled fort.

DODD, ROBERT F.

Rank and organization: Private, Company E, 27th Michigan Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Hantramck, Mich. Born: 1844, Canada. Date of issue: 27 July 1896. Citation: While acting as orderly, voluntarily assisted to carry off the wounded from the ground in front of the crater while exposed to a heavy fire.

DORSEY, DECATUR

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company B, 39th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Baltimore County, Md. Birth: Howard County, Md. Date of issue: 8 November 1865. Citation: Planted his colors on the Confederate works in advance of his regiment, and when the regiment was driven back to the Union works he carried the colors there and bravely rallied the men.

GWYNNE, NATHANIEL

Rank and organization: Private, Company H, 13th Ohio Cavalry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Fairmount, Mo. Birth: Champaign County, Ohio. Date of issue. 27 January 1865. Citation: When about entering upon the charge, this soldier, then but 15 years old, was cautioned not to go in, as he had not been mustered. He indignantly protected and participated in the charge, his left arm being crushed by a shell and amputated soon afterward.

HAIGHT, SIDNEY

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company E, 1st Michigan Sharpshooters. Place and dare: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Goodland, Mich. Born. 1846, Reading, Mich. Date of issue. 31 July 1896. Citation: Instead of retreating, remained in the captured works, regardless of his personal safety and exposed to the firing, which he boldly and deliberately returned until the enemy was close upon him.

HILL, JAMES

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company C, 14th New York Heavy Artillery. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Lyons, N.Y. Birth. Lyons, N.Y. Date of issue: 1 December 1864. Citation: Capture of flag, shooting a Confederate officer who was rallying his men with the colors in his hand.

HOGAN, FRANKLIN

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company A, 45th Pennsylvania Infantry. Place and date: Front of Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Howard, Pa. Birth: Center County, Pa. Date of issue: 1 October 1864. Citation: Capture of flag of 6th Virginia Infantry (C.S.A.).

HOMAN, CONRAD

Rank and organization: Color Sergeant, Company A, 29th Massachusetts Infantry. Place and date: Near Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at:------. Birth: Roxbury, Mass. Date of issue: 3 June 1869. Citation: Fought his way through the enemy's lines with the regimental colors, the rest of the color guard being killed or captured.

KNIGHT, CHARLES H.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company I, 9th New Hampshire Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at Keene, N.H. Birth: Keene, N.H. Date of issue: 27 July 1896. Citation. In company with a sergeant, was the first to enter the exploded mine; was wounded but took several prisoners to the Federal lines.

MATHEWS, WILLIAM H.

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company E, 2d Maryland Veteran Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Baltimore, Md. Birth: England. Date of issue: 10 July 1892. Citation: Finding himself among a squad of Confederates, he fired into them, killing 1, and was himself wounded, but succeeded in bringing in a sergeant and 2 men of the 17th South Carolina Regiment (C.S.A.) as prisoners.

McALWEE, BENJAMIN F.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company D, 3d Maryland Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Washington, D.C. Date of issue: 4 April 1898. Citation: Picked up a shell with burning fuse and threw it over the parapet into the ditch, where it exploded; by this act he probably saved the lives of comrades at the great peril of his own.

SCHNEIDER, GEORGE

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company A, 3d Maryland Veteran Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Baltimore, Md. Date of issue: 27 July 1896. Citation: After the color sergeant had been shot down, seized the colors and planted them on the enemy's works during the charge.

SIMONS, CHARLES J.

Rank and organization. Sergeant, Company A, 9th New Hampshire Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Exeter, N.H. Birth: India. Date of issue: 27 July 1896. Citation: Was one of the first in the exploded mine, captured a number of prisoners. and was himself captured, but escaped.

SWIFT, HARLAN J.

Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, Company H, 2d Mew York Militia Regiment. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: New York. Birth: New Hudson, N.Y. Date of issue: 20 July 1897. Citation: Having advanced with his regiment and captured the enemy's line, saw 4 of the enemy retiring toward their second line of works. He advanced upon them alone, compelled their surrender and regained his regiment with the 4 prisoners.

THATCHER, CHARLES M.

Rank and organization: Private, Company B, 1st Michigan Sharpshooters. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Eastmanville, Mich. Born: 1844, Coldwater, Mich. Date of issue: 31 July 1896. Citation: Instead of retreating or surrendering when the works were captured, regardless of his personal safety continued to return the enemy's fire until he was captured.

WELSH, JAMES

Rank and organization: Private, Company E, 4th Rhode Island Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Slatersville, R.I. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 3 June 1905. Citation: Bore off the regimental colors after the color sergeant had been wounded and the color corporal bearing the colors killed thereby saving the colors from capture.

WILKINS, LEANDER A.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company H, 9th New Hampshire Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Lancaster, N.H. Date of issue: 1 December 1864. Citation: Recaptured the colors of 21st Massachusetts Infantry in a hand_to_hand encounter.

WRIGHT, ALBERT D.

Rank and organization: Captain, Company G, 43d U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at:------. Born: 10 December 1844, Elkland, Tioga County, Pa. Date of issue: 1 May 1893. Citation: Advanced beyond the enemy's lines, capturing a stand of colors and its color guard; was severely wounded.

BATES, DELAVAN

Rank and organization: Colonel, 30th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Cemetery Hill, Va., 30 July 1864. Entered service at: Oswego County, N.Y. Born: 1840, Schoharie County, N.Y. Date of issue: 22 June 1891. Citation: Gallantry in action where he fell, shot through the face, at the head of his regiment.

NUGENT, CHRISTOPHER

Rank and organization: Orderly Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps. Born: 1840, County of Caven, Ireland. Accredited to: Massachusetts. G.O. No.: 32, 16 April 1864. Citation: Serving on board the U.S.S. Fort Henry, Crystal River, Fla., 15 June 1863. Reconnoitering on the Crystal River on this date and in charge of a boat from the Fort Henry, Orderly Sgt. Nugent ordered an assault upon a rebel breastwork fortification. In this assault, the orderly sergeant and his comrades drove a guard of 11 rebels into the swamp, capturing their arms and destroying their camp equipage while gallantly withholding fire to prevent harm to a woman among the fugitives. On 30 July 1863, he further proved his courage by capturing a boat off Depot Key, Fla., containing 2 men and a woman with their baggage.

The next Medal is from the period of the Interim Awards, 1871-1898 This one is cryptic. One assumes it was a drowning rescue, as the history of Pensacola has nothing in it of special note for that time period.


REGAN, PATRICK

Rank and organization: Ordinary Seaman, U.S. Navy. Born: 1852, Ireland. Accredited to: New York. Citation: Serving on board the U.S.S. Pensacola, Regan displayed gallant conduct in the harbor of Coquimbor, Chile, 30 July 1873.

We then move to WWI


O'NEILL, RICHARD W.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company D, 165th Infantry, 42d Division. Place and date: On the Ourcq River, France, 30 July 1918. Entered service at: New York, N.Y. Birth: New York, N.Y. G.O. No.: 30, W.D., 1921. Citation: In advance of an assaulting line, he attacked a detachment of about 25 of the enemy. In the ensuing hand-to-hand encounter he sustained pistol wounds, but heroically continued in the advance, during which he received additional wounds: but, with great physical effort, he remained in active command of his detachment. Being again wounded, he was forced by weakness and loss of blood to be evacuated, but insisted upon being taken first to the battalion commander in order to transmit to him valuable information relative to enemy positions and the disposition of our men.

And finally, this days roll ends with WWII


*OZBOURN, JOSEPH WILLIAM

Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Marine Corps. Born: 24 October 1919, Herrin, Ill. Accredited to: Illinois. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as a Browning Automatic Rifleman serving with the 1st Battalion, 23d Marines, 4th Marine Division, during the battle for enemy Japanese-held Tinian Island, Marianas Islands, 30 July 1944. As a member of a platoon assigned the mission of clearing the remaining Japanese troops from dugouts and pillboxes along a tree line, Pvt. Ozbourn, flanked by 2 men on either side, was moving forward to throw an armed handgrenade into a dugout when a terrific blast from the entrance severely wounded the 4 men and himself. Unable to throw the grenade into the dugout and with no place to hurl it without endangering the other men, Pvt. Ozbourn unhesitatingly grasped it close to his body and fell upon it, sacrificing his own life to absorb the full impact of the explosion, but saving his comrades. His great personal valor and unwavering loyalty reflect the highest credit upon Pvt. Ozbourn and the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.
*Indicates a posthumous award.

1 Comments

Thanks for the clarification on the number of MoH's for today.  Very interesting.