Monday, March 26, 2012

This Day in History March 27, 1844

So, does anyone know who this is?  It is the anniversary of his birthday.  It was on this date in 1844 that Adolphus Greely was born.  And just who was he?  He was a Polar explorer and an officer in the army.  He even received the Medal of Honor.  And, are you ready for this?  He was an American!  You mean someone was well-respected and an American?  How rare that is in this day and age.  Then again, respect is hard to come by in this world.

He was  Massachusetts native who entered the army at the age of 17 (after being rejected twice).  He served as a volunteer in the Civil War, but most of his army career was with the Signal Corps (joined in 1869).  His career was not without difficulties.  There were only six survivors of his army Arctic expedition, and his leadership was called into question.  The expedition did result in some wonderful Canadian and Greenland explorations, and he finally was cleared of any wrongdoing.

He retired from the army in 1908, but he was not done with his contributions to society.  He was a founding member of the National Geographic Society.  He received a belated Congressional Medal of Honor at the age of 95.  He died October 20, 1935, and he has been commemorated with a postage stamp in 1986.

Okay, so I hadn't heard of him before either.  That is one of the reasons I continue to do these features.  I continue to learn, and I hope my wonderful readers do, too.

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