Skip to main content Smithsonian Institution

Catalog Data

Manufactured by:
Graco Awards Manufacturing, Inc., American, 1981 - 2011  Search this
Designed by:
J. Andre Smith, American, 1880 - 1959  Search this
Issued by:
United States Army, American, founded 1775  Search this
Received by:
Lewis Cunningham Broadus, American, 1875 - 1960  Search this
bronze on metal with ribbon
H x W x D: 3 9/16 × 1 3/4 × 1/4 in. (9 × 4.5 × 0.6 cm)
Place made:
Tomball, Harris County, Texas, United States, North and Central America
Awarded 1906; issued 2006
Lewiston Cunningham Broadus (1875-1960) was veteran of the United States Army, who served his country with valor for over 32 years, from 1897 to 1923. As a Buffalo Soldier in the 25th Infantry, Captain Broadus was a veteran of the Indian wars, saw action in the Texas-Mexican border skirmishes, fought in the Spanish-American War with Theodore Roosevelt's "Rough Riders" at San Juan Hill, and served with Captain Young's troopers at the Presidio in San Francisco. In World War I, he fought in the 92nd Infantry with General Pershing in major European campaigns. On July 3, 1906 while Broadus was a first sergeant stationed at Fort Niobrara, NE, a disgruntled private attempted to shoot an officer who had reported him for abusive language. Broadus grabbed the rifle by the muzzle as the shot was fired, thereby protecting the officer and nearly being hit by the bullet himself. For this action, he was awarded a Certificate of Merit from President Theodore Roosevelt. The award was later converted to a Distinguished Service Cross on April 26, 1934. After lobbying efforts by the family, the Department of the Army issued the Cross to Lewis Broadus's surviving family members in 2006.
The Distinguished Service Cross medal issued to Lewis Cunningham Broadus. The medal features a large cross and mainly blue ribbon with edge stripes of white and red. The ribbon is embedded in the upraised edges of the gold pinback. The back of the pinback has a manufacture’s mark that reads, [GRACO-GI]. The medal hangs from its ribbon by a circular metal loop. The body of the medal is in the shape of a cross with an embellished design on each arm end. The cross has an inner outline close to the edge that surrounds the upraised center of the cross. In the center of the cross is an eagle with outspread wings. The eagle rests on a wreath that connects to the scroll at the bottom center in a tie. The scroll unfurls from each side arm of the cross and has the words on the left, [FOR], and on the right, [VALOR]. The back of the medal has the same inner outline and raised central design. The scroll from the front continues to the center of the wreath at the back center of the medal. In the center of the wreath, a rectangular piece of medal has the inscribed name of the recipient, [LEWIS BROADUS]. The back of the eagle's wings can be seen and are designed with feathers.
African American  Search this
Buffalo Soldiers  Search this
Military  Search this
Spanish-American War, 1898  Search this
World War I  Search this
World War II  Search this
Credit Line:
Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Gift of the Lewis Broadus Family
Object number:
Restrictions & Rights:
No Known Copyright Restrictions
Proper usage is the responsibility of the user.
See more items in:
National Museum of African American History and Culture Collection
Awards and Medals
Data Source:
National Museum of African American History and Culture