Nields was appointed Mate on 11 February 1863 and Acting Ensign on 11 July 1864. Assigned to Metacomet, he earned Admiral David G. Farragut's praise for his part in the rescue of survivors from Tecumseh after that monitor had gone down, mined within 600 yards of Confederate guns during the Battle of Mobile Bay. Nields and his boat crew saved one officer, eight enlisted men, and Tecumseh's pilot, braving “one of the most galling fires” that Farragut had ever seen.
Advanced to the rank of Lieutenant Commander on 1 July 1870, Nields died on 13 December 1880.
USS Nields (DD-616) was named for him.
This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.
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