Michael Crowley - a Recipient of the
Medal of Honor (United States)
Michael was from Rochester, New York; he enlisted in the Army on 4 December 1863, mustering in on 20 December 1863 to Company A, 22nd New York Cavalry Regiment. The 22nd New York Cavalry was active in the Battle of the Wilderness, Battle of Spotsylvania Courthouse, Battle of Cold Harbor, the Siege of Petersburg, and Sheridan's Expedition to Petersburg of which the Battle of Waynesboro is where Michael's actions resulted in him being recommended for the Medal of Honor.
The Battle of Waynesboro was the result of Maj. Gen. Philip Sheridan's campaign thru the Shenandoah Valley to Staunton and the army turned east headed to Waynesboro. On 2 March 1865, the troops under the command of Brig. Gen. George A. Custer encountered the remnants of Lt. Gen. Jubal Early's Valley army at Waynesboro. After a brief stand-off, Custer attacked Early's left flank and scattered the Confederate troops with the capture of more than 1,500 Confederates. This was the last battle fought in the Shenandoah Valley.
He received the Medal of Honor due to capture of a confederate flag, and at the presentation ceremony on 21 March 1865, Michael was quoted as saying, "...I came across the fellow, ordered him to halt and surrender, which he did, handing me the flag." The flag which is a regimental battle flag was manufactured by the Staunton Clothing Depot, late in 1864 for the Army of the Valley. Crowley's captured flag is held in the collection of the American Civil War Museum.
Michael was discharged as a Private from the Army on 1 August 1865 in Winchester, Virginia. Michael's military record indicates he was 5'8" tall, blue eyes, sandy hair, and fair complexion. Research into Michael's life has not revealed any records other than the available military service records. A Wikipedia page for Michael indicates he died on 12 May 1888 in Boston, Massachusetts. Review of the Massachusetts death records indicates a Michael Crowley who died on 12 May 1888 was born in Ireland and his death was recorded in Worcester. While a Find-a-grave page for Michael indicates he died in Worcester. Not much is known of Michael before and after his Army service, it would appear that his most significant life event has been preserved for us to remember him as a member of the Crowley Clan.
- Crowley Medal of Honor Citation - www.cmohs.org/recipient-detail/314/crowley-michael.php
- Crowley Flag Details - books.google.com/books/about/Arms_and_equipment_of_the_Confederacy.html?id=vQKcAW1RjZ8C
- Crowley article: Daily National Republican., March 21, 1865 - http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn86053570/1865-03-21/ed-1/seq-2/
- Civil War Newspaper Clippings - https://dmna.ny.gov/historic/reghist/civil/cavalry/22ndCav/22ndCavCWN.htm
- Medal of Honor Description and Images - http://www.tioh.hqda.pentagon.mil/Catalog/Heraldry.aspx?HeraldryId=15237&CategoryId=3&grp=4&menu=Decorations and Medals&ps=24&p=0
- Crowley Wikipedia Page - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Crowley_(soldier)
- Crowley Find-a-grave Page - http://www.findagrave.com/
The Crowley Clan Newsletter is
compiled by Marian Crowley Chamberlain