Beaty, Powhatan

ACTION: Chaffin's Farm (Fort Harrison), VA.

DATE: 29 September 1864.

NAME: Beaty, Powhatan

RANK/UNIT: First Sergeant, Co. G, 5th U.S. Colored Troops.

CITATION: "Took command of his company, all the officers having been killed or wounded, and gallantly led it."

MEDAL PRESENTED: 6 April 1865.

BIOGRAPHICAL DATA: Born: Richmond, VA. 1839.

ENTERED SERVICE: Medal says Delaware County, OH. Bearss says Cincinnati, OH. 7 June 1863.


OTHER: Powhatan Beaty was a 24-year-old farmer when he enlisted. He stood 5'7" tall. He was promoted to the rank of Sergeant on 9 June 1863 at Camp Delaware, OH. (Two days after enlisting).

Medal of Honor Recipients: 1863-1978, Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1979. p. 27
Bearss, Edwin C., "Black Medals of Honor Received a New Market Heights, 29 September 1864." National park Service Memo in Richmond NBP files, 2 April 1979.
Davis, William C., Death in the Trenches: Grant at Petersburg. Alexandria, VA Time-Life books, 1986. p.125


An order from Gen. Benjamin Butler, dated 11 October 1864, had this to say:

Milton M. Holland, sergeant-major, Fifth U.S. Colored Troops, commanding Company C; James H. Bronson, first sergeant, commanding Company D; Robert Pinn, first sergeant, commanding Company I, wounded; Powhatan Beaty, first sergeant, commanding Company G, Fifth U.S. Colored Troops--all these gallant colored soldiers were left in command, all their company officers being killed or wounded, and led them gallantly and meritoriously through the day. For these services they have most honorable mention, and the commanding general will cause a special medal to be struck in honor of these gallant colored soldiers.

Official Records, #89, p168

Powhatan Beaty, African American soldier of the 5th United States Colored Troops
Powhatan Beaty, 5th USCT

Library of Congress

Last updated: February 26, 2015

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