WILLIAMS, Peter

US Navy. Born 1831 in Norway. Civil War: Enlisted from Pennsylvania. Awarded the Medal of Honor. As quartermaster on board the “U.S.S. Ironclad Steamer Monitor”, at Hampton Roads, at the mouth of the James River, on 9 Mar 1862, he was at the helm. During the engagement between the “U.S.S. Monitor” and the “C.S.S. Merrimack”, the “Merrimack” was trying to attack the warship “Minnesota”, which was grounded on a sand bar and awaiting the next high tide. The “Monitor” went forth to protect the “Minnesota”. Williams “gallantly served throughout the engagement, piloting the Monitor throughout the battle which ended when the Merrimack, after being damaged, retired from the scene of the battle”. When a shell from the Merimack slammed into the pilot house and blinded Captain John Worden, Williams never left his post. A US Navyman named Peter Williams died on 31 May 1863 and is buried in Plot 12 in Mt. Moriah Cemetery, Philadelphia. Sources: (“America’s Medal of Honor Recipients”. Publ. 1977, pp 259, 1022) (“Medal of Honor Recipients 1863-1994”, publ by Facts on File, Inc., 1995, vol 1 p243) (http://www.homeofheroes.com/moh/citations_1862)

Menu