Leonidas H. Inscho
According to an article written by reporter Kevin House, appearing in The Advocate on November 11, 1988, Leonidas H Inscho was the first Licking County resident to receive the Medal of Honor.
Leonidas was born in Chatham on February 20, 1840 and enlisted in the Ohio 12th Volunteer Infantry Regiment in 1861. Although he fought in a number of battles, his actions in a fight at South Mountain, Maryland earned him the Medal of Honor. Having been wounded and unable to accompany the regiment, he alone captured five Confederate soldiers including a captain and killed a sixth man during the incident. Inscho received the Medal of Honor for his actions in September 1862.
Inscho returned to Licking County and married Laura Maria McKinney in 1870. He ran a grocery store on West Church Street and lived close by at 310 Church Street in Newark. Inscho’s story came to light in 1987 when resident E. Chris Evans, a local insurance agent, noticed the Medal of Honor recipient’s name and nearby hometown in an issue of ‘Blue and Gray magazine.’ After doing further research, Evans realized that Leonidas had not been’ recognized for his bravery and the distinction of being the county’s first Medal of Honor winner.
As a result of E. Chris Evans’ chance spotting of Inscho in Blue and Gray Magazine and hard work, Newark Mayor William Moore announced that Saturday, November 12, 1988 would be proclaimed as ‘Leonidas H. Inscho Day.’ A special ceremony was held at Cedar Hill Cemetery and a bronze grave marker was placed on the grave 81 years after Inscho’s death November 12, 1907.
- Kevin House, “County’s Civil War Hero will be Honored in Special Ceremony,” The Advocate, November 11, 1968, pg 1.