Calvin Pearl Titus

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Calvin Pearl Titus
Calvin P. Titus cph.3a02128.jpg
Calvin Titus in his West Point Cadet Uniform
Born (1879-09-22)September 22, 1879
Vinton, Iowa
Died May 27, 1966(1966-05-27) (aged 86)
San Fernando, California
Place of burial Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Los Angeles
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service 1898–1930
Rank Lieutenant Colonel
Unit 14th Infantry Regiment
Battles/wars Philippine–American War
Boxer Rebellion
*Battle of Peking
Mexican Expedition
Awards Medal of Honor

Calvin Pearl Titus (September 22, 1879 – May 27, 1966) was a soldier of the United States Army and the last American standard-bearer.[citation needed] He received the Medal of Honor for his actions during the Battle of Peking of the Boxer Rebellion.


Corporal Titus scaling the walls of Peking.

Calvin Pearl Titus was the son of Calvin and Cora Smith Titus of Vinton, Iowa. He moved to Oklahoma with his father after his mother died, and later lived with his Aunt Florence and Uncle William (Bill) H. Lee, evangelists with first the Salvation Army and later the Pilgrim Holiness movement. Titus credited his time in his Uncle's evangelical band with giving him the bugle skills to join the armed forces and eventually leading him to Peking.

Titus first joined the United States Army in May 1898, serving with the 1st Vermont Volunteer Infantry (although raised for the Spanish–American War, this unit never left the United States). He joined the 14th Infantry Regiment in April 1899, serving in the Philippines and China.

He was then appointed to West Point as a result of his award of the Medal of Honor, where President Theodore Roosevelt's presentation of his medal there on March 11, 1902, was the climax of a ceremony to celebrate the academy's centennial.[1] He graduated with the West Point Class of 1905

His religious faith led him to try to become an Army Chaplain, but his denomination was not at that time recognized by the Army. Instead, he rejoined his old regiment as a second lieutenant.

Titus later served in the Mexican Expedition and with the U.S. occupation forces in Germany.

He retired from the United States Army with the rank of lieutenant colonel in October 1930.[2] In September 2016, Titus was honored with the painting of his image of the Benton County Freedom Rock, located in Shellsburg, Iowa.

Medal of Honor citation[edit]

Rank and organization: Musician, U.S. Army, Company E, 14th U.S. Infantry. Place and date: At Peking, China, August 14, 1900. Entered service at: Iowa. Birth: Vinton, Iowa. Date of issue: March 11, 1902.


Gallant and daring conduct in the presence of his colonel and other officers and enlisted men of his regiment; was first to scale the wall of the city.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ambrose, Steven E. (1966). Duty, Honor, Country: A History of West Point. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins Press. p. 242. ISBN 0-8018-6293-0. 
  2. ^ Service Profile

External links[edit]