|The Medal of Honor|
The Medal of Honor is the highest military honor awarded in the U. S. All branches of the service are eligible to receive the medal and each
has its own design. The Coast Guard design has never been awarded. The medal is usually presented to the recipient or survivors by the President. |
Although military medals have existed since 1782, the actual Medal of Honor came into existance in 1862. It has changed in appearance several times. The Medal of Honor has been awarded 3,461 times (1,522 during the Civil War), but only 19 people have received it more than once. The only woman to receive the medal was Dr. Mary Edwards Walker.
During the Civil War, the medal was most often awarded for capturing the enemies flag or saving the Union flag.
The Confederates created their own medal in 1862, known as the Southern Cross of Honor. It is unknown how many men received this honor. Because of a shortage of metal during the war, many medals were not awarded.