HONORABLE DISCHARGE MEDAL OF SPENCER ADKINS, 13TH WEST VIRGINIA INFANTRY

$450.00

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Item Code: 844-09

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The state of West Virginia authorized medals for its Union veterans in 1866. Some 26,099 were produced by A. Demarest of New York, die-sinker and engraver, with J. Sigel finishing the dies. These were all bronze, like our example, with only three or four struck in silver, and as produced fell into three classes: honorably discharged, killed in battle, and died in service of wounds or disease. This follows the specifications laid out for the first class:

No. I. Obverse. The figure of Liberty, scantily draped, to the right, with both arms extended; the right hand holding a laurel wreath which she is about to place upon the head of a soldier, who, to the left, is stepping forward to be crowned; the left hand holding a scroll which the soldier is receiving. Behind the figure of Liberty, the American eagle is perched upon a small pedestal, and behind the soldier is a box of growing cereals. On the base of the piece of ground on which these figures stand is the name of "J. Sigel, N. Y," In exergue, the legend, motto, and devices of the arms of the State of West Virginia, to the left of which is the date 1861, and to the right the date 1865.
Reverse. Within a wreath of laurel, the inscription in five lines, "Presented | By The | State | of | West Virginia." In exergue, "A. Demarest, N. Y."
This medal is suspended from a bronzed pin (similar to that of the Crimean medal), a scroll, on which occur the words "HONORABLY DISCHARGED," and which is attached to the medal by the letters "W. V." interlaced; a tri-coloured ribbon, one and one-eighth inches wide by four inches long, is also suspended to the pin.

Adkins, born in 1829 in Roanoke, Lewis County, WV enlisted on 10/1/62 as a Sergeant and on that date was mustered into Co. B, 13th West Virginia Infantry. Date and method of discharge not given. He did apply for a pension on 5/3/1879 from the state of West Virginia; his widow, Caroline, applied for a pension on 2/24/90.  Adkins died on 2/1/90 in Point Pleasant, Mason County, WV and is buried there in Lone Oak Cemetery.

Our example is in good condition, with a rich, reddish brown color to the bronze and light soiling to the ribbon throughout, as well minor wear along the bottom edge, and a few spots with loss of color. The rim is stamped, “ADKINS SPENCER SERGT. CO B 13TH REG INF VOLS

The 13th Infantry West Virginia Volunteers was organized October, 1862, at Point Pleasant, Va. (W.Va) serving in the Kanawha Valley during its first year. Commanding officers were Col. William R. Brown and Lt. Col. James R. Hall. The 13th served at Winfield, Va. and Hurricane Bridge, where they fought an engagement against confederate General Jenkins. In the summer of 1863 they were ordered to Ohio to pursue the rebel cavalryman John Hunt Morgan. The 13th engaged Morgan at Bluffington Island and the Big Hocking River. They then returned to duty in the Kanawha Valley. On May 22, 1864 the 13th was assigned to duty under General Crook, Department of West Virginia, 1st Brigade (various divisions) and engaged in meritorious service at Lynchburg, Winchester, Kernstown, Charlestown, Halltown, Berryville, Opequoan, Fisher's Hill and Cedar Creek.  During its service the regiment lost 4 officers and 57 enlisted men to combat and 1 officer and 108 enlisted men to disease. The regiment was mustered out June 22, 1865.  [sr/ld] [ph:L]

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