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Isaac Payne, or Isaac Paine, (1854–1904) was a Black Seminole who served as a United States Army Indian Scout and received America's highest military decoration—the Medal of Honor—for his actions in the Indian Wars of the western United States.

Isaac Payne
Died1904 (aged 49–50)
Place of burial
Seminole Indian Scout Cemetery Brackettville, Texas
AllegianceUnited States of America
Service/branchUnited States Army
Years of service1871 - 1876, 1877 - 1901
UnitBlack Seminole Scouts, 24th Infantry Regiment
Battles/warsAmerican Indian Wars
AwardsMedal of Honor


Payne and other Black Seminoles enlisted in the army October 1871 and became known as one of the Seminole-Negro Indian Scouts. On April 25, 1875, he was serving as a trumpeter by the Pecos River in Texas where, "[w]ith 3 other men, he participated in a charge against 25 hostiles while on a scouting patrol." A month later, on May 28, 1875, Payne was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions during the engagement. Two of the other men who took part in the charge, Pompey Factor and John Ward, both Black Seminoles, also received Medals of Honor.

Payne was discharged in January 1901, and moved back to Mexico, where he lived until his death at age 49 or 50. [1] He was buried at the Seminole Indian Scout Cemetery in Brackettville, Texas.

Medal of Honor citationEdit

Rank and organization: Trumpeter, Indian Scouts. Place and date: At Pecos River, Tex., April 25, 1875. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Mexico. Date of issue: May 28, 1875.


With 3 other men, he participated in a charge against 25 hostiles while on a scouting patrol.

See alsoEdit


  • "Isaac Payne". Claim to Fame: Medal of Honor recipients. Find a Grave. Retrieved 2007-01-15.
  • "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.