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First Name: Dennis

Last Name: Bell

Birthplace: Washington, DC, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Washington, DC

Date of Birth: 28 December 1866

Date of Death: 25 September 1953

Rank: Corporal

Years Served: 1898-1906
Dennis Bell

•  Spanish-American War (1898)


Dennis Bell

Corporal, U.S. Army

Medal of Honor Recipient

Spanish-American War

Corporal Dennis Bell (28 December 1866 - 25 September 1953) was a Buffalo Soldier in the U.S. Army who received the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his heroic actions during the Spanish-American War.


Bell was born 28 December 1866 and joined the Army from his birth city, Washington, DC. On 30 June 1898, he was serving as a Private in Troop H of the 10th Cavalry Regiment. That day American forces aboard the USSĀ Florida near Tayacoba, Cuba, dispatched a small landing party to provide reconnaissance on Spanish outposts in the area. The party was discovered by Spanish scouts and came under heavy fire; their boats were sunk by enemy cannon fire, leaving them stranded on shore.

The men aboard the Florida launched several rescue attempts; the first four were forced to retreat under heavy fire. The fifth attempt, manned by Bell and three other Privates of the 10th Cavalry (Fitz Lee, William H. Thompkins, and George H. Wanton), launched at night and successfully found and rescued the surviving members of the landing party. One year later, on 23 June 1899, all four rescuers were awarded the Medal of Honor for their actions in what had come to be known as the Battle of Tayacoba.

Dennis Bell reached the rank of Corporal before leaving the Army.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Troop H, 10th U.S. Cavalry

Place and date: Tayabacoa, Cuba, 30 June 1898

Citation: Voluntarily went ashore in the face of the enemy and aided in the rescue of his wounded comrades; this after several previous attempts at rescue had been frustrated.

Death and Burial

Corporal Dennis Bell died on 25 September 1953 at age 86. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA, in Section 31, Lot 349.

Honoree ID: 1852   Created by: MHOH




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