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Tom Custer’s Medals of Honor


Thomas Ward Custer, born this day, March 15, 1845, is not just the cavalry officer who died alongside his famous brother at the Little Bighorn. Tom Custer is also one of only 19 double Medal of Honor recipients.

He received his first citation during the Civil War after leading the charge over a Confederate barricade near Namozine Church, Virginia. He single-handedly captured three officers, eleven enlisted men and a battle flag.

He received the second Medal of Honor following his actions at Sailor Creek, Virginia on April 6, 1865. Again leading the charge over the enemy’s breastworks he was shot through the face, but captured two stands of colors before returning to Union lines.

Following the Civil War, Tom Custer was assigned to the 7th US Cavalry. He spent nearly three years at Fort Abraham Lincoln in Dakota Territory before his death in 1876.

Written by Christina Sunwall


Medal of Honor.com- http://www.medalofhonor.com/ThomasCuster.htm

Reynolds, Arlene, ed. The Civil War Memories of Elizabeth Bacon Custer: Reconstructed from her diaries and notes by Arlene Reynolds (Austin: University of Texas Press; 1994)

US Army Center of Military History: Medal of Honor- http://www.history.army.mil/moh.html