He was a Boatswain’s Mate on board the U.S.S. Brooklyn in Mobile Bay
Richard Dennis was awarded the Medal of Honor for actions taken on August 5th, 1864 in the famous naval engagement when Admiral Farragut proclaimed, “Damn the torpedoes, full steam ahead!”
Richard Dennis (1826 - 1889 was a Union Navy sailor in the American Civil War and a recipient of the U.S. military's highest decoration, the Medal of Honor, for his actions at the Battle of Mobile Bay.
This beautiful key wind silver watch exhibits a thick beveled cut crystal displaying a porcelain background marked “American Watch Company. All hands present. The nickel silver case is inscribed: “Presented to Richard Dennis, by his father W.S. Dennis July 21 1871”, Case is marked: “Keystone watchcase silveroid”. Workings are by P.S. Bartlett of Waltham Mass. Nice original chain link silver watch fob with original functional key. A beautiful example belonging to a soldier who earned our top military honor.
Dennis was born in 1826 in Charlestown, Massachusetts. He joined the Navy from Boston in March 1864 and served during the Civil War as a boatswain's mate on the USS Brooklyn. At the Battle of Mobile Bay on August 5, 1864, he operated the ship's torpedo catcher (an early naval minesweeping device) and helped fire the bow chase gun despite heavy fire. For this action, he was awarded the Medal of Honor four months later, on December 31, 1864. He was discharged in February 1866.
Dennis's official Medal of Honor citation reads: On board the U.S.S. Brooklyn during successful attacks against Fort Morgan, rebel gunboats and the ram Tennessee in Mobile Bay, on 5 August 1864. Despite severe damage to his ship and the loss of several men on board as enemy fire raked her decks from stem to stern, Dennis displayed outstanding skill and courage in operating the torpedo catcher and in assisting in working the bow chasers throughout the furious battle which resulted in the surrender of the prize rebel ram Tennessee and in the damaging and destruction of batteries at Fort Morgan.
38 year-old Currier.
Enlisted on 3/2/1864 at Boston, MA as a Seaman.
On 3/2/1864 he mustered into US Navy
He was discharged on 2/2/1866
He was listed as:
* Fought 8/5/1864 Mobile Bay, AL (Aboard USS Brooklyn)
* Boatswain's Mate
Ships served on in Navy:
* USS OHIO
* USS BROOKLYN
* USS DON (discharged from ship)
Born in 1826 in Charlestown, MA
Medal of Honor Information:
He was awarded the Medal of Honor for action on 8/5/1864 at Mobile Bay, AL.
(Displayed outstanding skill and courage in operating the torpedo catcher)
Inventory Number: IDE 093 / Sold