Lt. Ralph Izard (USN)

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Lt. Ralph Izard (USN)'s Geni Profile

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Ralph DeLancey Izard

Also Known As: "Izerd"
Death: Died
Immediate Family:

Son of Ralph Izard, U.S. Senator and Alice Izard
Husband of Eliza Izard and Hester Izard
Father of Ralph Stead Izard
Brother of Margaret Manigault; Gen.George Izard, 2nd Territorial Governor of Arkansas and Anne Deas

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Lt. Ralph Izard (USN)

Ralph DeLancey Izard (26 February 1785 – 21 January 1822) was a United States Navy officer who became a hero for his actions at Tripoli, during the Barbary Wars. The destroyer USS Izard (DD-589) was named after him.

Early service

Ralph DeLancey Izard was born 26 February 1785 at Charleston, South Carolina, the son of a prominent political family. His father was Senator Ralph Izard, who served as a delegate to the Continental Congress (1782–1783), U.S. Senator from South Carolina (1789–1795), and was President pro tempore of the United States Senate.

Ralph was appointed Midshipman 2 October 1799.

The Burning of the Philadelphia

Izard volunteered and took part in the expedition under Lieutenant Stephen Decatur, commanding the ketch Intrepid, which entered the harbor of Tripoli 16 February 1804 and destroyed the captured U.S. frigate Philadelphia in what Lord Nelson called the most daring act of the age. Izard was assigned duty under Lt. Decatur, with Midshipman John Rowe and 15 men, to hold the spar deck.

Later Duty

He also took part in the attacks on Tripoli during August and September 1804 as part of Commodore Edward Preble's squadron. He was promoted to Lieutenant on 27 January 1807. Lt. Izard died 21 January 1822 at Charleston, South Carolina.


In 1808, Izard married Eliza Pinckney, daughter of Maj-Gen Charles Cotesworth Pinckney, signatory to the Constitution, and a granddaughter of Col Charles Pinckney, chief justice of South Carolina.


The destroyer Izard was launched and named in Lt. Izard's honor on 8 August 1942. She served in the Pacific during World War II, including the battles of Kwajalein, the Philippine Sea, Leyte, and Iwo Jima, among others. She received 10 battle stars for service.

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Lt. Ralph Izard (USN)'s Timeline

February 26, 1785
Age 29
South Carolina
January 21, 1822
Age 36