The Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History recently placed a Medal of Honor awarded to Wilson W. Brown on exhibit on Friday, April 24.
A Union soldier and one of the Andrews Raiders, Brown was awarded the Medal of Honor in September 1863, for the role he played in seizing the General locomotive on April 12, 1862 to begin The Great Locomotive Chase.
The Andrews Raiders were the first soldiers ever to receive the Medal of Honor. The Southern Museum has exhibited a Medal of Honor awarded to fellow Andrews Raider John Scott since 2003.
“To hold in the collection not one, but two of the first Medals of Honor ever awarded is a rare distinction” said museum curator Jonathan Scott. “We’re proud to be able to exhibit both of these medals alongside each other and adjacent to the locomotive that their recipients stole in 1862 while commemorating the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War.”
This past weekend marks the anniversary to the end of major Civil War combat in the Southeast, when Confederate General Joseph Johnston surrendered to Union General William Sherman in North Carolina on April 26, 1865.
“Artifacts like these will help us continue telling the story of the remarkable event of the Great Locomotive Chase for generations to come,” said Dr. Richard Banz, executive director of the Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History. “Also these Medals of Honor, being among the first ever awarded, commemorate the start of one of the most revered traditions in American military history that still exists today.”
The Southern Museum, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, will be exhibiting the two medals in the museum’s General Gallery through the rest of 2015.
Museum admission is $7.50 for adults, $6.50 for seniors, $5.50 for children ages 4-12 and free for children three and under as well as Museum members. The Museum is located at 2829 Cherokee Street in downtown Kennesaw (exit 273 on Interstate 75).