Pvt JOSEPH C. HIBSON
Company C, 48th New York Infantry
Near Fort Wagner, S.C.
13 – 14&18 July 1863
As a Bugler Joseph Hibson was not required to pull picket duty, he was a Musician I didn’t even have his own rifle, but as he recounted years later “I was looking for some excitement” – Instead he earned a Medal of Honor.
Hibson was serving voluntarily as a picket when he was attacked by Rebel forces, when they demanded his surrender… He killed them.
The next day the call went out for a volunteer willing to sneak into the enemy camp and reconnoiter their assets, Hibson answered.
The mission required the young bugler to steal across the active battlefield, in the dark, and penetrate the enemy’s lines under fire. He pulled it off.
When the main assault on Ft. Wagner took place, Hibson was with the 48th when they crossed the defensive moat and attacked Confederate positions.
The 48th engaged the 31st North Carolina Infantry in hand to hand combat and prevailed but reinforcements mistook Union troops occupying Confederate position for the enemy and poured merciless fire on them.
Hibson braved fire from both friend and foe to race back across lines to redirect fire away from his unit. He then made the return trip to get back in the fight.
Over the course of the battle Hibson was wounded 3 times including a ball to his arm that shattered the bone and a major shrapnel would to the scalp.
Over the course of the battle the bugler repeatedly exposed himself to enemy fire and ever let up, his actions both saved union lives and contributed to the victory.
He may have been little but he was definitely an American Badass.