Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Marine and Navy Came First

President Abraham Lincoln signed the bill on December 21st 1861 that created the Navy and Marine Medal of Honor.

The United States' oldest continuously awarded military decoration is the Navy and Marine Corps’ Medal of Honor. It was created by Union Secretary of the Navy, Gideon Welles as an award for enlisted men. Senate Bill Number 82 was signed into law by President Abraham Lincoln on December 21st 1861. The highest of military decoration, was designed by artist Christian Schuller. It shows the Goddess Minerva with the shield of the Republic, which refered to the split in the Nation; with thirty-eight stars, the number of states in the Union when Civil War began. The medal was to be given to “such petty officers, seamen, landsmen, and Marines as shall most distinguish themselves by their gallantry and other seamanlike qualities during the present war.” The Union Army would get its Medal of Honor on July 12th 1862.