b. 12/05/1846 Sackets Harbour, New York. d. 20/11/1918 Los Angeles, California.
DATE OF MOH ACTION: 12/07/1870 Wichita River, Texas.
George H. Eldridge was born in Sackets Harbor, New York on May 12, 1846. He later moved to Michigan where, at the start of the American Civil War, he joined the 24th Michigan Volunteer Infantry which along with the 2nd, 6th and 7th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry regiments, would form the “Iron Brigade” of the Army of the Potomac. Eldridge returned to military service years later when he enlisted in the U.S. Army in Detroit and was assigned to the 6th U.S. Cavalry. He took part in campaigns against the Plains Indians during the Texas-Indian Wars, most notably, against the Kiowa in the late-1860s. On July 6, 1870, he was among the cavalrymen under Captain Curwen B. McClelland who left Fort Richardson (near Jacksboro, Texas) to pursue renegade Indians who had seized mail from nearby Rock Station. After a 5-day chase, McClelland’s force was ambushed at Wichita River by a force of 250 warriors under Chief Kicking Bird resulting in the Battle of the Little Wichita River. Despite being outnumbered and outgunned, the cavalry troopers managed to force the Kiowas to retreat after heavy fighting. After returning to Fort Richardson, Eldridge and 12 other soldiers were received the Medal of Honor for “gallantry in action” on August 25, 1870.
Gallantry in action.
BURIAL LOCATION: LOS ANGELES NATIONAL CEMETERY, LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA.
SECTION 37, ROW B, GRAVE 1
LOCATION OF MEDAL: U.S. CAVALRY MUSEUM (1904 DESIGN), FORT RILEY, KANSAS.