William McKnight, Medal of Honor Recipient

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Black and white photographic portrait of William McKnight, a Medal of Honor recipient, for service during the Civil War.
The inscription on the reverse states that McKnight served onboard the U.S.S. Veruna and participated in attacks on Forts Jackson and St. Philip on April 24, 1862 during the Civil War. The record holds that McKnight did his duty "through the thickest of the fight, with great coolness and danger to the enemy."
Official Citation:
Rank and organization: Coxswain, U.S. Navy. Born: 1840 Ulster County, N.Y. Accredited to: New York. G.O. No.: 11, 3 April 1863. Citation: Captain of a gun on board the U.S.S. Varuna during the attacks on Forts Jackson and St. Philip and in action against the rebel ship Morgan, 24 April 1862. During this action at extremely close range, while his ship was under furious fire and was twice rammed by the rebel ship Morgan, McKnight remained steadfast at his gun throughout the thickest of the fight and was instrumental in inflicting damage on the enemy until the Varuna, so badly damaged that she was forced to beach, was finally sunk.
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
overall: 6 1/2 in x 4 1/4 in; 16.51 cm x 10.795 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Medal of Honor
related event
Civil War
See more items in
Armed Forces History: Armed Forces History, Naval
Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient Portraits
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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