Jacob G. Frick

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Jacob Gellert Frick
Born (1825-01-23)January 23, 1825
Northumberland County, Pennsylvania
Died March 5, 1902(1902-03-05) (aged 77)
Pottsville, Pennsylvania
Place of burial Presbyterian Cemetery, Pottsville, Pennsylvania
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Army
Union Army
Years of service 1846 - 1865
Rank Colonel
Unit Army of the Potomac
Commands held 129th Pennsylvania Infantry
27th Pennsylvania Emergency Militia
Battles/wars Mexican American War
American Civil War
Awards Medal of Honor
Other work businessman

Jacob Gellert Frick (January 23, 1825 – March 5, 1902) was an officer in the Union Army during the American Civil War. He was a recipient of the Medal of Honor for his gallantry in action while serving as the colonel of the 129th Pennsylvania Infantry at the battles of Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville.

Early military career[edit]

Frick was born in Northumberland County, Pennsylvania, a fourth-generation descendant of Swiss immigrants. In June 1846, following the outbreak of the Mexican-American War, he was commissioned a Third Lieutenant in the 3rd Ohio Infantry Regiment. When the war ended, he received a regular army commission in the 11th US Infantry Regiment. He served as an instructor at Fort McHenry, and was a delegate to the 1860 Republican National Convention.[1]

Civil War service[edit]

Eighteen soldiers were awarded Medals of Honor for their heroism during the heavy fighting at Fredericksburg, Virginia, on December 13, 1862. In action against the Confederate forces, Frick seized the colors and led his command through a terrible fire of enemy cannon and musketry. On May 3, 1863, at Chancellorsville, Virginia, Frick recovered the colors of his regiment in a hand-to-hand engagement, after the flag had been taken by Confederate forces.[2]

Frick later led the 27th Pennsylvania Emergency Militia during the Gettysburg Campaign. His men successfully burned the Columbia-Wrightsville Bridge to prevent its capture by Confederate infantry under Brig. Gen. John B. Gordon. Later, he consulted with Col. Henry Pleasants regarding digging a mine under Confederate entrenchments during the 1864 Siege of Petersburg that resulted in the Battle of the Crater. After the war, Frick returned to Pottsville, Pennsylvania.

He died in Pottsville in 1902 and is buried in the Presbyterian Cemetery.

Medal of Honor citation[edit]

Rank and organization: Colonel, 129th Pennsylvania Infantry
Place and date: At Fredericksburg, Virginia, December 13, 1862. At Chancellorsville, Va., May 3, 1863.
Entered service at: Pottsville, Pennsylvania
Born: January 23, 1838, Northumberland County, Pennsylvania
Date of issue: June 7, 1892.


At Fredericksburg seized the colors and led the command through a terrible fire of cannon and musketry. In a hand-to-hand fight at Chancellorsville, recaptured the colors of his regiment.[3]


The anonymous fictional memoir Red-Tape and Pigeon-Hole Generals has been ascribed by some to Jacob G. Frick.[4] It is a thinly disguised attack on the character & military ability of Gen. Andrew A. Humphreys.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Biography
  2. ^ HomeofHeroes.com, Frick gravesite
  3. ^ Jacob G. Frick, Medal of Honor
  4. ^ United States. War Dept. Library (1913). Bibliography of State Participation in the Civil War 1861-1866. U.S. Government Printing Office. p. 939. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]