About John F. Bickford
One of ten men awarded a medal of honor for sinking the Confederate raider, the Alabama off the coast of France.
Civil War Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient. Served in the Civil War in the Union Navy as a Captain of the Top on board the "USS Kearsarge". He was awarded the CMOH for his bravery during the "Kearsarge"'s celebrated sinking of the Confederate raider "CSS Alabama" off Cherbourg, France, on June 19, 1864. His citation reads "Acting as the first loader of the pivot gun during this bitter engagement, Bickford exhibited marked coolness and good conduct and was highly recommended for his gallantry under fire by his divisional officer". His Medal was awarded on December 31, 1864.
He was one of 17 "USS Kearsarge" crewmembers to be awarded the Medal of Honor for bravery in the defeat of the "Alabama" (the others being Paymaster’s Steward Michael Aheam, Boatswain’s Mate William S. Bond, Captain of the Forecastle James Haley, Carpenter’s Mate Mark G. Ham, Seaman George H. Harrison, Coxswain John Hayes, Seaman James H. Lee, Seaman Charles Moore, Seaman Joachim Pease, Boatswain’s Mate Thomas Perry, Quartermaster William B. Poole, Coxswain Charles A. Read, Seaman George E. Read, Quartermaster James Saunders, Quartermaster William Smith and Captain of the Top Robert Strahan)