About Alfred B Hilton, SGT (USA)
Alfred B. Hilton (died October 21, 1864) was a Union Army soldier during the American Civil War and a recipient of America's highest military decoration—the Medal of Honor—for his actions at the Battle of Chaffin's Farm.
By September 29, 1864, Hilton was serving as a Sergeant in Company H of the 4th Regiment United States Colored Infantry. On that day, his unit participated in the Battle of Chaffin's Farm on the outskirts of the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia. During the battle, Hilton carried the American flag as part of the unit's color guard. As the 4th Regiment charged the enemy fortifications, Hilton grabbed a second flag, the regimental colors, from a wounded soldier. When he was himself seriously wounded by a shot through the leg, he called out "Boys, save the colors!" Two of his fellow soldiers stepped forward; Sergeant Major Christian Fleetwood took the American flag and Private Charles Veale grabbed the blue regimental flag, each before the colors could touch the ground.
Hilton died of his wounds nearly a month later, on October 21. Six months after the battle, on April 6, 1865, he was posthumously issued the Medal of Honor for his actions at Chaffin's Farm. The men who had taken the flags after he was wounded, Fleetwood and Veale, also received the medal.
Hilton is buried in Hampton National Cemetery, Hampton, Virginia.
Medal of Honor citation
Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company H, 4th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date. At Chapins Farm, Va., September 29, 1864. Entered service at:------. Birth: Harford County, Md. Date of issue: April 6, 1865.
When the regimental color bearer fell, this soldier seized the color and carried it forward, together with the national standard, until disabled at the enemy's inner line