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Charles L. Thomas
Charles L. Thomas.jpg
Charles L. Thomas as depicted in Deeds of Valor, Volume II
Born (1843-02-12)February 12, 1843
Died February 24, 1923(1923-02-24) (aged 80)
Place of birth Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Place of burial Dwight-Morris cemetery, Morris county, Kansas
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Army
Rank Sergeant
Unit 11th Ohio Cavalry
Battles/wars Indian wars
Awards Medal of Honor

Charles L. Thomas (February 12, 1843–February 24, 1923) was a United States Army soldier who received the Medal of Honor for heroism on September 17, 1865 during the Indian Campaigns in the Dakota Territory.


Thomas was born on February 12, 1843 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

During the Powder River Indian expedition in Wyoming in the fall of 1865, Captain Humpfervill returned to the camp of General Connor of the 11th Ohio Cavalry after a scout with 300 men, to report that Colonel Cole of the Regiment was surrounded by Indians near the Powder River. General Conner called for a volunteer "to go as a scout and find Cole or perish in the attempt." (C.L. Thomas) Sergeant Charles Thomas volunteered and spent 36 hours traveling about 201 miles alone in hostile territory to find Colonel Cole and deliver a message from General Conner. After leaving Conner's camp at 8 A.M., on his second day, Sergeant Thomas was sighted by hostile Indians in the area as he followed Colonel Cole's trail, and "began to exchange shots - and it was a running fight for the balance of the day." Capturing an Indian pony, Thomas kept it with him in case his own horse was shot. During the day he stumbled across John Hutson of the 2d Missouri, who had become detached from Cole's element and was in hiding. Thomas had Hutson mount the spare pony, delivering him to Colonel Cole's camp after arriving about 6 P.M. to deliver the general's message.

He died on February 24, 1923 and is buried in the Dwight-Morris cemetery, in Morris county, Kansas.

Medal of Honor citationEdit

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company E, 11th Ohio Cavalry. Place and date: At Powder River Expedition Dakota Territory, September 17, 1865. Entered service at:------. Birth: Philadelphia, Pa. Date of issue: August 24, 1894.


Carried a message through a country infested with hostile Indians and saved the life of a comrade en route.

See alsoEdit


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