William Othello Wilson, a native of Hagerstown, Maryland, was born on September 16, 1867. He enlisted in the United States Army on August 21, 1889. He earned the Medal of Honor on December 30, 1890 for "gallantry in action voluntarily", for successfully carrying a message to the battalion commander at the Pine Ridge Indian Agency in South Dakota.
"Two United States Army nurses carry heavy combat packs on a eight-mile hike through the jungle as part of their training before taking up front-line war assignments. Before reporting for duty the American nurses learn how to combat jungle hazards and how to care both for themselves and their patients under all conditions."
Clifford Chester Sims, a Staff Sergeant in Vietnam, and Medal of Honor recipient. Sims was honored for "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty." He threw himself on a triggered booby-trap device, taking the entire blast to save his squad.
Frances Ellen Watkins Harper~An Unsung Heroine She helped slaves escape through the Underground Railroad and wrote frequently for anti-slavery newspapers, earning her a reputation as the mother of African American journalism. She was an abolitionist, poet and author. Born free in Baltimore, Maryland, she had a long and prolific career, publishing her first book of poetry at age 20.
Juanita E. Jackson Mitchell was the first black woman to graduate from the University of Maryland law school and the first Black woman to practice law in Maryland. Originally denied admission to the University in 1927, she attended Morgan State College and transferred to the University of Pennsylvania after two years. With legal support from the Baltimore branch of the NAACP, which her mother headed, Mitchell was admitted when the university dropped their racial barriers.
Born into slavery in Thomasville, Georgia, on March 21, 1856, Henry Ossian Flipper was appointed to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, in 1873. Over the next four years he overcame harassment, isolation, and insults to become West Point’s first African American graduate and the first African American commissioned officer in the regular U.S. Army.
Harriet Tubman became famous as a "conductor" on the Underground Railroad during the turbulent 1850s. Born a slave on Maryland's eastern shore, she endured the harsh existence of a field hand, including brutal beatings. In 1849 she fled slavery, despite a bounty on her head, she returned to the South at least 19 times to lead her family & hundreds of other slaves to freedom via the Underground Railroad. Tubman also served as a scout, spy and nurse during the Civil War
ON OCTOBER 2, 1866, Emanuel Stance, the man who was to win the Medal of Honor for action in the post-Civil War period, approached a U.S. Army recruiting officer in Lake Providence, Louisiana. The recruiter, Lieutenant John Maroney, would record Stance's eyes as "black," his hair as "black," and his complexion as "black." His age would be recorded as 19 and his occupation as that of a "farmer." A more accurate description of his occupation would probably have been "sharecropper."