- USAF Academy Department of History
The Exclusion of Black Soldiers From the Medal of Honor in World War II
by Elliott V. Converse
The purpose of this study, commissioned by the Army, was to document the process by which the Congressional Medal of Honor was awarded from December 7, 1941, through September 1, 1948; to identify units in which African Americans served; to identify by name all black soldiers whose names were submitted for the medal and to document any errors in the processing of their nominations; and to compile a list of all black soldiers who received the Distinguished Service Cross, the second highest award. Based on this work, in January 1997 President Clinton awarded seven African Americans the Medal of Honor. The authors were selected by Shaw University of Raleigh, North Carolina, to conduct this study under a United States Army contract.