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Charles E. Capehart (1833–1911) was an officer in the U.S. Cavalry during the American Civil War. He received the Medal of Honor for action following the Battle of Gettysburg on July 4, 1863.

Charles E. Capehart
Charles E. Capehart LOC.jpg
Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Died1911 (aged 77–78)
Washington D.C.
Place of burial
AllegianceUnited States United States of America
Service/branchUnited States United States Army
Union Army
Years of service1861 – 1865
RankUnion Army LTC rank insignia.png Lieutenant Colonel
Commands heldWest Virginia 1st West Virginia Cavalry
Battles/warsAmerican Civil War
 • Battle of Gettysburg
 • Fight at Monterey Pass
AwardsMedal of Honor

Military serviceEdit

Capehart enlisted in the Union Army and was commissioned captain and placed in command of Company A, 1st West Virginia Cavalry. He was promoted to major on June 6, 1863. Major Capehart assumed command of the regiment during the Battle of Gettysburg when Colonel Nathaniel P. Richmond had to assume command of the regiment's brigade after brigade commander Elon J. Farnsworth was killed leading a charge. On July 4, 1863, Capehart's regiment charged down a mountainside at night during a thunderstorm, attacking and capturing a retreating Confederate wagon train. This act would lead to the awarding of the Medal of Honor.

Capehart was promoted to lieutenant colonel on August 1, 1864. His brother, General Henry Capehart was also awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions in the Civil War. Charles died on July 11, 1911, and was buried in Section 3 of Arlington National Cemetery.

Medal of Honor citationEdit

For The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pleasure in presenting the Medal of Honor to Major Charles E. Capehart, United States Army, for extraordinary heroism on 4 July 1863, while serving with 1st West Virginia Cavalry, in action at Monterey Mountain, Pennsylvania. While commanding the regiment, Major Capehart charged down the mountain side at midnight, in a heavy rain, upon the enemy's fleeing wagon train. Many wagons were captured and destroyed and many prisoners taken.

Date of Issue: April 7, 1898

Action Date: July 4, 1863

See alsoEdit


External linksEdit

  • "Charles E. Capehart". Claim to Fame: Medal of Honor recipients. Find a Grave. Retrieved September 4, 2010.
  • "Arlington National Cemetery Website". Retrieved September 24, 2010.
  • "Charles E. Capehart". Hall of Valor. Military Times. Retrieved September 4, 2010.