Thomas Shaw (Medal of Honor)

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Thomas Shaw
Thomas Shaw (MOH).jpg
Sergeant Thomas Shaw
Born1846
Covington, Kentucky
DiedJune 23, 1895 (aged 4849)
Place of burial
AllegianceUnited States
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service1864-1894
Rank Sergeant
Unit 67th U.S. Colored Troops
9th Cavalry Regiment
Battles/wars American Indian Wars
Awards Medal of Honor

Thomas Shaw (1846 – June 23, 1895) was a Buffalo Soldier in the United States Army and a recipient of America's highest military decoration – the Medal of Honor – for his actions in the Indian Wars of the western United States.

Buffalo Soldier African American regiments of the US Army created 1866, the first Negro regulars in peacetime

Buffalo Soldiers originally were members of the 10th Cavalry Regiment of the United States Army, formed on September 21, 1866, at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. This nickname was given to the Black Cavalry by Native American tribes who fought in the Indian Wars. The term eventually became synonymous with all of the African American regiments formed in 1866:

United States Army Land warfare branch of the United States Armed Forces

The United States Army (USA) is the land warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces. It is one of the seven uniformed services of the United States, and is designated as the Army of the United States in the United States Constitution. As the oldest and most senior branch of the U.S. military in order of precedence, the modern U.S. Army has its roots in the Continental Army, which was formed to fight the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783)—before the United States of America was established as a country. After the Revolutionary War, the Congress of the Confederation created the United States Army on 3 June 1784 to replace the disbanded Continental Army. The United States Army considers itself descended from the Continental Army, and dates its institutional inception from the origin of that armed force in 1775.

Medal of Honor United States of Americas highest military honor

The Medal of Honor is the United States of America's highest and most prestigious personal military decoration that may be awarded to recognize U.S. military service members who have distinguished themselves by acts of valor. The medal is normally awarded by the President of the United States in the name of the U.S. Congress. Because the medal is presented "in the name of Congress", it is often referred to informally as the "Congressional Medal of Honor". However, the official name of the current award is "Medal of Honor." Within the United States Code the medal is referred to as the "Medal of Honor", and less frequently as "Congressional Medal of Honor". U.S. awards, including the Medal of Honor, do not have post-nominal titles, and while there is no official abbreviation, the most common abbreviations are "MOH" and "MH".

Contents

Biography

Thomas Shaw was born into slavery in Covington, Kentucky in 1846. Shaw's owner moved him to Pike County, Missiouri, and from there, Shaw escaped his owner and walked into a Union Army recruiting station. Shaw was stationed with the 67th U.S. Colored Troops in 1864 and stayed with the Army after the Civil War. [1]

United States Colored Troops African American soldiers for the Union in the American Civil War

The United States Colored Troops (USCT) were regiments in the United States Army composed primarily of African-American (colored) soldiers, although members of other minority groups also served with the units. They were first recruited during the American Civil War, and by the end of that war in April 1865, the 175 USCT regiments constituted about one-tenth of the manpower of the Union Army. About 20% of USCT soldiers died, a rate about 35% higher than that for white Union troops. Despite heavy casualties, many fought with distinction, with 15 USCT receiving the Medal of Honor and numerous other honors.

American Civil War Civil war in the United States from 1861 to 1865

The American Civil War was a war fought in the United States from 1861 to 1865, between the North and the South. The Civil War is the most studied and written about episode in U.S. history. Primarily as a result of the long-standing controversy over the enslavement of black people, war broke out in April 1861 when secessionist forces attacked Fort Sumter in South Carolina shortly after Abraham Lincoln had been inaugurated as the President of the United States. The loyalists of the Union in the North proclaimed support for the Constitution. They faced secessionists of the Confederate States in the South, who advocated for states' rights to uphold slavery.

By August 12, 1881 was serving as a Sergeant in Company K of the 9th Cavalry Regiment. On that day he participated in the Battle of Carrizo Canyon at Carrizo Canyon in New Mexico. The 9th Cavalry were in pursuit of Nana and his band of Apache warriors (Victorio's War). For his actions during the engagement, Shaw was awarded the Medal of Honor nine years later, on December 7, 1890.

9th Cavalry Regiment (United States)

The 9th Cavalry Regiment includes active duty reconnaissance units of the United States Army.

Battle of Carrizo Canyon

The Battle of Carrizo Canyon was one of seven battles between Nana's band of Apache warriors and United States Cavalry troops in New Mexico Territory. After the death of Victorio in 1880, Nana took over leadership of the band. Other Apaches joined this old warrior's group. On August 12, 1881, Capt. Charles Parker with 18 10th Cavalry Buffalo Soldiers were following Nana's warriors when they were ambushed in Carrizo Canyon.

Carrizo Canyon is a canyon in San Diego County, California. Its mouth is at an elevation of 699 feet / 213 meters. It heads at 32°44′39″N116°11′50″W in the mouth of Carrizo Gorge, at an elevation of 1,411 feet / 430 meters, and trends north to where it opens out in southeastern Carrizo Valley less than a mile east of Egg Mountain.

Shaw retired from the Army in 1894 and settled in Rosslyn, Virginia. [1]

Shaw died in 1895, leaving a wife and a daughter [1] and was buried in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington County, Virginia.

Arlington National Cemetery Military cemetery in the United States

Arlington National Cemetery is a United States military cemetery in Arlington County, Virginia, across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., in whose 624 acres (253 ha) the dead of the nation's conflicts have been buried, beginning with the Civil War, as well as reinterred dead from earlier wars. The United States Department of the Army, a component of the United States Department of Defense (DoD), controls the cemetery.

Arlington County, Virginia County in the United States

Arlington County is a county in the Commonwealth of Virginia, often referred to simply as Arlington or Arlington, Virginia. In 2016, the county's population was estimated at 230,050, making it the sixth-largest county in Virginia, or the fourth-largest city if it were incorporated as such. It is the 5th highest-income county in the U.S. by median family income and has the highest concentration of singles in the region.

Thomas Shaw in 1889 as a Sergeant in K Troop, 9th Cavalry Thomas Shaw in uniform.jpg
Thomas Shaw in 1889 as a Sergeant in K Troop, 9th Cavalry

Medal of Honor citation

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company K, 9th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Carrizo Canyon, N. Mex., August 12, 1881. Entered service at: Pike County, Mo. Birth: Covington, Ky. Date of issue: December 7, 1890.

Citation

Forced the enemy back after stubbornly holding his ground in an extremely exposed position and prevented the enemy's superior numbers from surrounding his command. [2]

See also

Notes

  1. 1 2 3 Schubert, Frank N. (1997). Black Valor: Buffalo Soldiers and the Medal of Honor, 1870-1898. Scholarly Resources Inc. pp. 87–88. ISBN   9780842025867.
  2. "Indian War Period Medal of Honor recipients". Medal of Honor citations. United States Army Center of Military History. 2005-04-19. Retrieved 2007-01-15.

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