Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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FEGAN, James, soldier, born in Athlone, lreland, in 1827; died in Fort Shaw, Montana, 25 June 1886. He served in the constabulary in his native country, but came to the United States in early life, and enlisted as a private in the 2d U. S. infantry, 29 October 1851. He reenlisted eight times, entering the service again as soon as his term expired, and was finally retired on 8 May 1885. He was sent to the soldiers' home in Washington in 1870, but obtained a discharge and returned to active service. Fegan was a well-known character in his regiment, and many stories are told of his shrewdness and humor. He served with credit in the civil war, and was wounded at Antietam. In March 1868, at Plum Creek, Kan. sas, he stood guard single-handed over a deserter he had captured and a powdertrain, defended both against a crowd of men who wished to recapture the deserter, and brought his charge safe to camp. For his gallantry he was given the U. S. Medal of Honor. On 6 December 1882, Fegan was made the subject of a special presidential message to congress.
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