Tazewell County Honoring Medal Of Honor Recipients

A Medal of Honor is currently on display in Tazewell County.

Tazewell County Clerk John Ackerman says it was given to Green Valley resident Dr. Thomas Murphy, who enlisted in the Union Army in Pekin in 1861.

“The family has donated it to the Tazewell County Historical Museum. And, it will be there in Pekin as a permanent exhibit,” Ackerman said.

Murphy is one of three Medal of Honor recipients that once called Tazewell County home, but is the only one buried there.

“He ran in front of his men that were firing at the Confederates. In front of the Confederates that thought he was a good target, and started opening fire on him. All the way to the Union Army, that was firing on them, carrying a white flag that said ‘stop firing on us.”

“There’s only 3,520 ever in U.S. History. And, three of them called Tazewell County home. All three of them, from the same battle, the Battle of Vicksburg,” Ackerman said.

He tells WMBD’s Greg and Dan that fellow Civil War Veterans John Ayers and William Reed are buried outside of Illinois.

All three will be honored at the Green Valley Cemetery, where Murphy is buried, Saturday, May 18, beginning at at 10 a.m.

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