Civil War Wiki
Louis Capet Shepard
[[Image:Louis Shepard|center|200px|border]]Ordinary Seaman Louis C. Shepard
Personal Information
Born: September 2, 1841(1841-09-02)
Place of Birth: {{{place of birth}}}
Died: April 27, 1919 (aged 77)
Place of Death: {{{place of death}}}
Birth Name: {{{birth name}}}
Other Information
Allegiance: File:Flag of the United States.svg United States of America
Participation(s): {{{participations}}}
Branch: United States Army Seal U.S. Army
United States Navy Seal U.S. Navy
Service Years: {{{service years}}}
Rank: Private
Ordinary Seaman
Service number : {{{servicenumber}}}
Unit: Co. I 19th Ohio Infantry
11th Indpt. Batt'y, N.Y. Light Art'y
USS Allegheny
USS Wabash
USS Commodore Perry
USS Constellation
Battles: American Civil War
Awards: File:Medal of Honor ribbon.svg - Medal of Honor
Relations: {{{relations}}}
Other work: {{{otherwork}}}

Lewis Capet Shepard (September 2, 1841 – April 27, 1919) was born in Ashtabula County, Ohio and was a Union Navy sailor during the American Civil War who received America's highest military decoration the Medal of Honor for his actions at the Second Battle of Fort Fisher. Due to a Navy clerical error however his citation and history will always record his first name as Louis[1][2][3]

Army Service[]

Shepard enlisted as a private in Company I, of the 19th Ohio Infantry, mustering in on the 27th of April 1861 for a term of three months. During that time he participated in the Battle of Rich Mountain in Randolph County, Virginia (now West Virginia). This first major land battle of the civil war and Union victory propelled General George B. McClellan to command of the Army of the Potomac. According to Shepards 19th OVI muster card he spent three days on extra duty setting telegraph poles, mustering out of this unit 30 Aug 1861.

He reenlisted in the 11th Independent Battery, New York Light Artillery on the 18th of Sep 1861 for a period of three years. On Aug 26 1862 he was captured with 19 other soldiers from the 11th IBNYA at the Second Battle of Bull Run also known as Second Manassas. During Oct and Nov 1862 he is listed with the 7th Detachment, 2nd Battalion, Paroled Prisoners, at Annapolis, Maryland. After returning to the 11th IBNYA in Dec 1862 he was promoted to Corporal on the 2nd of Jan 1863. Corporal Shepards unit was transferred to the Reserve Artillery and attached temporarily to Battery K, 1st New York Light Artillery, Shepard also saw action at Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and the Battle of Mine Run.

Corporal Shepard was discharged on the 7th and reenlisted on the 8th of Feb 1864 in the 11th IBNYA at Brandy Station, Va. as a veteran volunteer under General Order 191 signed June 25, 1863. He was again discharged on the 23 of April 1864 after petitioning the Army for a transfer to the Navy under General Order 91 of 1864.

Navy Service[]

Enlisting in the United States Navy on the 25th of Apr 1864 at Baltimore, Maryland. as an ordinary seaman he served aboard the USS Allegheny, USS Wabash, USS Commodore Perry and the USS Constellation.

During his service aboard the USS Wabash, he participated in the landing party that assaulted Fort Fisher in Wilmington, North Carolina in January 1865. He advanced gallantly through severe enemy fire, while armed only with a revolver and cutlass, which made it impossible to return the fire at that range. Shepard succeeded in not only reaching the angle of the fort, but in being one of the few to enter it. When the rest of the men to his rear were forced to retreat due to devastating fire, Shepard was forced to withdraw and seek the shelter of one of the mounds near the stockade. Shepard then succeeded in regaining the safety of his ship.

Shepard was just 23 years old at the time. After the fall of Fort Fisher, the Confederate army evacuated its remaining forts in the Cape Fear area, and Union forces soon overtook Wilmington. Once Wilmington fell, the supply line of the Confederacy was severed, and the war soon ended.

He was later presented with the Medal of Honor in recognition of his service. Due to a Navy clerical error, his citation reads Louis; however his name was spelled Lewis. Shepard died in Danbury, Ohio, and was buried in Lakeview Cemetery in Port Clinton, Ohio.

In April 2005, Ohio Congressman Steven C. LaTourette, representing the district that contains Shepard's native Ashtabula, passed a resolution in the House honoring Shephard. The flag that was flown over the United States Capitol on April 27, 2005, was unveiled on Memorial Day 2005 during the dedication ceremony for the new Ashtabula County Veterans Memorial. VFW Post 3334 in Jefferson was instrumental on behalf of the new memorial, and for choosing to honor the valor of Louis C. Shepard.

Medal of Honor citation[]

Rank and Organization:

Ordinary Seaman, U.S. Navy. Born: 1843, Ohio. Accredited to: Ohio. G.O. No.: 59, June 22, 1865.


Served as seaman on board the U.S.S. Wabash in the assault on Fort Fisher, 15 January 1865. Advancing gallantly through severe enemy fire while armed only with a revolver and cutlass which made it impossible to return the fire at that range, Shepard succeeded in reaching the angle of the fort and in going on, to be one of the few who entered the fort. When the rest of the body of men to his rear were forced to retreat under a devastating fire, he was forced to withdraw through lack of support and to seek the shelter of one of the mounds near the stockade from which point he succeeded in regaining the safety of his ship.[4][5]

Medal of Honor Legion[]


Medal of Honor Legion certificate

No. 105

In the Name and by the Authority of the Medal of Honor Legion of the United States.

To all to whom these presents shall come Greeting

Know ye that Louis C. Shepard having received a Medal of Honor for distinguished gallantry in action, in accordance with the Acts of Congress and having rendered faithful service in maintaining the honor, integrity and supremacy of the United States of America, was received as a companion of the First Class of the Medal of Honor Legion of the United States of America on the fourth day of October Anno Domine, eighteen hundred and ninety two

In Testimony Whereof the names of the Commander and Adjutant and the seal of the order are hereunto affixed. Given at Washington D.C. this ninth day of June in the year of our lord eighteen hundred and ninety seven

Nelson A. Miles[6][7] Commander

John Tweedale[8][9] Adjutant

See also[]


  1. For factual Medal of Honor history sake this page is named Louis C. Shepard for it is under this name due to a Navy clerical error that the MOH was Awarded.
  2. A Quick search of Louis C. Shepard at Find a Grave will produce the grave of Mr. Shepard and his wife Velma and one can clearly see the family headstone contradicts the Government headstone.
  3. The original submitter of this page is in possession of the death certificates of Lewis Capet, Velma Eudora and their son Osmer Lewis Shepard.
  4. ""Civil War Medal of Honor citations" (S-Z): Shepard, Louis C.". Retrieved 2007-11-09. 
  5. ""Medal of Honor website” (M-Z): Shepard, Louis C.". Retrieved 2007-11-09. 
  6. ""Civil War Medal of Honor citations" (S-Z): Miles, Nelson A.". Retrieved 2007-11-09. 
  7. ""Medal of Honor website” (M-Z): Miles, Nelson A.". United States Army Center of Military History. Retrieved 2007-11-09. 
  8. ""Civil War Medal of Honor citations" (S-Z): Tweedale, John". Retrieved 2007-11-29. 
  9. ""Medal of Honor website” (M-Z): Tweedale, John". United States Army Center of Military History. Retrieved 2007-11-29. 


  • Louis C. Shepard at Find a Grave Note Lewis C. Shepard on Family head stone and Louis C. Shepard on the Government head stone.
  • "Library of Congress" Congressional Record—Extensions April 27, 2005 Comments by Ohio Congressman Steven C. LaTourette