Medal of Honor
Robert M. Blair was born in 1836 in Peacham, Vermont, and entered the service November 5, 1862, at Portland Maine. He served on screw-steam gunboat Huron, until his discharge December 31, 1863. He reenlisted June 16, 1864, and served on the side-wheel gunboat Pontoosuc and iron-hull screw tug Pinta, until his discharge on August 27, 1865. He is the only known native Vermonter awarded the Medal of Honor for service in the Navy during the Civil War.1 His citation reads "Served on board the USS Pontoosuc during the capture of Fort Fisher and Wilmington, 24 Dec 1864 to 22 Jan 1865. Carrying out his duties faithfully throughout this period, Blair was recommended for gallantry and skill and for his cool courage while under the fire of the enemy throughout these actions." Robert Blair died April 2, 1899, in Enid, Oklahoma, and is buried there.2
(to be continued ...)
See Researching and writing about Vermont Blue-Jackets in the Civil War for explanations of references.