Thomas Shaw (Medal of Honor)

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Thomas Shaw
Thomas Shaw (MOH).jpg
Sergeant Thomas Shaw
Covington, Kentucky
DiedJune 23, 1895 (aged 48–49)
Place of burial
AllegianceUnited States
Service/branchUnited States Army
Years of service1864-1894
Unit67th U.S. Colored Troops
9th Cavalry Regiment
Battles/warsAmerican Indian Wars
AwardsMedal of Honor

Thomas Shaw (1846 – June 23, 1895) was a Buffalo Soldier in the United States Army and a recipient of America's highest military decoration – the Medal of Honor – for his actions in the Indian Wars of the western United States.


Thomas Shaw was born into slavery in Covington, Kentucky in 1846. Shaw's owner moved him to Pike County, Missiouri, and from there, Shaw escaped his owner and walked into a Union Army recruiting station. Shaw was stationed with the 67th U.S. Colored Troops in 1864 and stayed with the Army after the Civil War.[1]

By August 12, 1881 was serving as a Sergeant in Company K of the 9th Cavalry Regiment. On that day he participated in the Battle of Carrizo Canyon at Carrizo Canyon in New Mexico. The 9th Cavalry were in pursuit of Nana and his band of Apache warriors (Victorio's War). For his actions during the engagement, Shaw was awarded the Medal of Honor nine years later, on December 7, 1890.

Shaw retired from the Army in 1894 and settled in Rosslyn, Virginia.[1]

Shaw died in 1895, leaving a wife and a daughter[1] and was buried in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington County, Virginia.

Thomas Shaw in 1889 as a Sergeant in K Troop, 9th Cavalry

Medal of Honor citation[edit]

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company K, 9th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Carrizo Canyon, N. Mex., August 12, 1881. Entered service at: Pike County, Mo. Birth: Covington, Ky. Date of issue: December 7, 1890.


Forced the enemy back after stubbornly holding his ground in an extremely exposed position and prevented the enemy's superior numbers from surrounding his command.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Schubert, Frank N. (1997). Black Valor: Buffalo Soldiers and the Medal of Honor, 1870-1898. Scholarly Resources Inc. pp. 87–88. ISBN 9780842025867.
  2. ^ "Indian War Period Medal of Honor recipients". Medal of Honor citations. United States Army Center of Military History. 2005-04-19. Retrieved 2007-01-15.