Alonzo H. Cushing
[[Image:Alonzo Cushing|center|200px|border]]Alonzo Cushing
Personal Information
Born: January 19, 1841(1841-01-19)
Place of Birth: {{{place of birth}}}
Died: July 3, 1863 (aged 22)
Place of Death: {{{place of death}}}
Nickname: {{{nickname}}}
Birth Name: {{{birth name}}}
Other Information
Allegiance: United States
Participation(s): {{{participations}}}
Branch: United States Army
Service Years: {{{service years}}}
Rank: First Lieutenant
Service number : {{{servicenumber}}}
Unit: {{{unit}}}
Commands: Battery A, 4th U.S. Artillery
Battles: American Civil War
 • Battle of Gettysburg
Awards:
Relations: Brother William B. Cushing
Other work: {{{otherwork}}}


Alonzo Hersford Cushing (January 19, 1841 – July 3, 1863) was an artillery officer in the Union Army during the American Civil War. He died at the Battle of Gettysburg while defending the Union position on Cemetery Ridge against Pickett's Charge for which he is to be awarded the Medal of Honor.

Civil War service[edit | edit source]

Cushing was born in what is now the city of Delafield, Wisconsin, but was raised in Fredonia, New York. His younger brother was future Union Navy officer Lt. William B. Cushing. They were the youngest of four brothers who eventually served in the Union forces.[1]

He graduated from the United States Military Academy in the class of June 1861. He commanded Battery A, 4th U.S. Artillery at Gettysburg, and was hailed by contemporaries as heroic in his actions on the third day of the battle. He was wounded three times. First, he was wounded by a shell fragment that went straight through his shoulder. He was then grievously wounded by a shell fragment which tore into his abdomen and groin. This wound exposed Cushing's intestines which he held in place with his hand as he continued to command his battery. After these injuries a higher ranking officer said, "Cushing, go to the rear." Cushing, due to the limited amount of men left, refused to fall back. The severity of his wounds left him unable to yell his orders above the sounds of battle. Thus, he was held aloft by his 1st Sergeant Frederick Füger, who faithfully passed on Cushing's commands. Cushing was killed when a bullet entered his mouth and exited through the back of his skull. He died on the field at the height of the assault.[2]

File:Cushing's Headstone 2196.jpg

Cushing's headstone at West Point

His body was returned to his family and then interred in the West Point Cemetery in Section 26, Row A, Grave 7. His headstone bears, at the behest of his mother, the inscription "Faithful unto Death."[3]

Cushing was posthumously cited for gallantry with a brevet promotion to lieutenant colonel. Füger received the Medal of Honor.[4]

Cushing will receive a belated award of the Medal of Honor. Senator Russ Feingold of Wisconsin nominated him for the medal in 2002 and, following a lengthy investigation, the U.S. Army approved the nomination in February 2010. In order for the medal to be awarded, it must next be approved by the U.S. Congress.[5] It was announced on May 20, 2010 that Cushing will receive the Medal of Honor, 147 years after his death.[6]

Alonzo H. Cushing Camp #5 of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War serves the Ozaukee County region of Wisconsin.[1] A small state park in Delafield is dedicated to the memory of Cushing and two of his brothers, William and Howie.[5]

Notes[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 SUVCW Camp #5 website
  2. Brown, Cushing of Gettysburg.
  3. West Point Cemetery tourbook
  4. Theodore Parsons Hall, Family History of Lieut.-Colonel Frederick Füger, U.S. Army, and his Descendants (Detroit: Winn & Hammond, 1904), p. 14 ff.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Hesselberg, George (March 9, 2010). "Wisconsin soldier who died in the Civil War gets Medal of Honor recommendation". Wisconsin State Journal (Madison, Wisconsin). Archived from the original on March 12, 2010. http://www.webcitation.org/5oBpKIUy7. 
  6. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/us_civil_war_medal_of_honor

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  • Brown, Kent Masterson, Cushing of Gettysburg, University Press of Kentucky, 1993, ISBN 0-8131-1837-9

External links[edit | edit source]

Further reading[edit | edit source]

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