Near Richmond in Chesterfield County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Duty Above and Beyond
While Confederate artillery fire repeatedly struck the USS Galena, three crewmen performed conspicuous acts of gallantry that would earn them the Medal of Honor.
When an artillery shell passed through the Galena, killing and disabling most of the crew serving her 100-pounder Parrot rifle, Corporal John Mackie rallied his comrades, shouting, “Come on boys, here’s a chance for the Marines.” After clearing up the debris and removing the injured, Mackie’s team resumed firing the huge cannon until the Galena withdrew. For his courage and leadership, the 27-year-old New Yorker became the first U.S. Marine to receive the Medal of Honor.
Charles Kenyon, a 22-year-old sailor from New York, was severely burned while clearing a bent priming wire from the bow gun. Kenyon returned to the gun to continue the fight, ignoring his injuries
Erected 2010 by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: War, US Civil • Waterways & Vessels.
Location. 37° 25.329′ N, 77° 25.301′ W. Marker is near Richmond, Virginia, in Chesterfield County. Marker can be reached from Fort Darling Road half a mile north of Bellwood Road. This marker is located in the Drewry’s Bluff (Fort Darling) unit of Richmond National Battlefield Park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 7600 Fort Darling Road, Richmond VA 23237, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. May 15, 1862—The Battle of Drewry's Bluff (here, next to this marker); Drewry’s Bluff (here, next to this marker); The USS Monitor (here, next to this marker); Finishing Fort Drewry (within shouting distance of this marker); A Perfect Gibraltar (within shouting distance of this marker); Hot Shot and Wooden Ships (within shouting distance of this marker); Bombproof and Well (within shouting distance of this marker); "A Very Neat Chapel" (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Richmond.
More about this marker. In the center is a portrait of "John F. Mackie in the uniform of a naval veteran’s organization. The Medal of Honor is displayed second from the left in his rows of medals."
On the right is a painting of "Mackie in action aboard the USS Galena during the Battle of Drewry’s Bluff. Courtesy Art Collection, National Museum of the Marine Corps, Triangle, Virginia"
Also see . . .
1. Drewry’s Bluff. Richmond National Battlefield Park (Submitted on October 18, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia.)
2. Old Marker at this Location. This marker replaced an older one at this location titled “The First Marine Medal of Honor” (Submitted on October 18, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia.)
3. Drewry’s Bluff. Civil War Richmond (Submitted on May 14, 2012, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia.)
Credits. This page was last revised on January 9, 2020. It was originally submitted on October 18, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 720 times since then and 12 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on October 18, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia.