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James H. Burbank
Born (1838-01-05)January 5, 1838
Died March 15, 1911(1911-03-15) (aged 73)
Place of birth Stavoren, Netherlands
Place of death Kansas
Buried at Miltonvale Cemetery, Kansas
Allegiance US flag 34 stars.svg United States of America
Service/branch U.S. Army
Rank Sergeant
Unit Rhode Island Company K, 4th Rhode Island Infantry
Awards Medal of Honor ribbon.svg Medal of Honor

Sergeant James H. Burbank (January 5, 1838 to February 15, 1911) was a Dutch soldier who fought in the American Civil War. Burbank received the United States' highest award for bravery during combat, the Medal of Honor, for his action at Blackwater, near Franklin, Virginia on 3 October 1862. He was honored with the award on 27 July 1896.[1][2][3]


Burbank was born in Stavoren, Friesland in the Netherlands on 5 January 1838 and migrated to the United States. He enlisted into the 1st Rhode Island Volunteers on 16 April 1861 at Providence, Rhode Island. He was promoted to second sergeant and later served as a non-commissioned first sergeant. Burbank served an 11-month stint with the navy, on detached service. It was during this service that he performed the act of gallantry that earned him the medal of honor. In October 1862 he was aboard the Commodore Perry at Black Water, near Franklin, Virginia. He served with outstanding bravery despite heavy fire and despite thirteen shots piercing his coat.[4]

Following the war Burbank married Mary A. Burns, who had emigrated from Glasgow, Scotland, and they resided in Rhode Island. He subsequently moved to Missouri and then Kansas. Their marriage produced seven children.[4]

Medal of Honor citationEdit

Gallantry in action while on detached service on board the gunboat Barney.[1][2][3]

See alsoEdit


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