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First Name: Albert

Last Name: Mills

Birthplace: New York City, NY, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: West Point, NY
Middle Name: Leopold

Date of Birth: 07 May 1854

Date of Death: 18 September 1916

Rank: Major General

Years Served: 1879-1916
Albert Leopold Mills

Graduate, U.S. Military Academy, Class of 1879

•  Spanish-American War (1898)


Albert Leopold Mills

Major General, U.S. Army

Medal of Honor Recipient

Spanish-American War

Major General Albert Leopold Mills (7 May 1854 - 18 September 1916) was a U.S. Army officer who received the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his heroic actions during the Spanish-American War.

Early Life and Spanish American War

Albert Leopold Mills was born in New York City. He was appointed to West Point, graduating with the class of 1879. He joined the 1st United States Cavalry after graduation, serving on the American frontier, alternating between being a cavalry instructor and participating in the conflicts with the Plains Indians. In 1886 he was posted as an instructor at the Citadel. Mills receive a promotion to First Lieutenant in 1889. After the Spanish American War began in 1898, he was promoted to a Captain of Volunteers, and served as an Assistant Adjutant General. He received the Medal of Honor for his bravery at the Battle of San Juan Hill near Santiago, Cuba, on 1 July 1898. Though shot through the head, and temporarily blinded, he continued to command his men. He was absent from duty until August 1898 while recovering from the effects of his wounds.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Captain and Assistant Adjutant General, U.S. Army, U.S. Volunteers

Place and date: Santiago, Cuba, 1 July 1898

Citation: Distinguished gallantry in encouraging those near him by his bravery and coolness after being shot through the head and entirely without sight.

Post-War Life

After recovering from his wounds and returning to duty, President William McKinley appointed him as the Superintendent at West Point, a posting that advanced him from his Regular Army rank of 1st Lieutenant to the rank of Colonel. He served as superintendent until August 1906. During his long term at West Point, he initiated numerous changes including suppression of hazing, and the expansion of the size of the academy. After the academy, he served in the Philippines and as Commandant of the Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, PA. He later served as Chief, Division of Militia Affairs from 1912-1916.

Personal Life

Mills married Alada Thurston Paddock of Brooklyn, NY, in 1883. They had two children, Chester P. Mills and Emily P. Mills (Laurson). His son was also an Army officer and his daughter was the wife of an officer.

Death and Burial

Major General Albert Leopold Mills became ill and died suddenly on 18 September 1916, while serving as Chief of the Militia Bureau. He is buried at the United States Military Academy Post Cemetery in West Point, Orange County, NY.

Honoree ID: 1922   Created by: MHOH




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