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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily

Immigrant Nation

  • Outstanding Immigrants Collection - Profiles of outstanding immigrants in different fields
  • Medal of Honor Recipients - The contribution of immigrants in the American armed forces has been outstanding and many times overlooked. Here is a collection of immigrants who have received one of the highest recognitions in the military, the Medal of Honor.
  • Immigrants on the Forbes 400 - 35 out of the richest 400 Americans are immigrants. Find out their nationality, net worth, age, organization, title and source of wealth.

Outstanding Immigrants Collection

"Give me your tired, your poor,
your huddled masses yearning to breathe free"

- Emma Lazarus, poet

"Immigration is the story of American history. From the earliest days of our nation, generation upon generation of immigrants has come to be part of a land that offers freedom and opportunity to those willing to do their part. Immigrants built our great cities. They cultivated our rich farm lands. They built the railroads and highways that bind America from sea to shining sea. They erected houses of worship to practice their faiths. They fought under America’s colors in our wars... over the centuries, immigrants came to America from every part of the globe and made the American dream. They created a nation that is the envy of the world."
- Ted Kennedy, US senator

Our country has been founded on the hard work, resilience and perseverence of millions of immigrants. The following stories and profiles show the contributions that immigrants make in different fields. From medicine to the arts to sports to politics, these outstanding immigrants are only a few examples of the positive effects of immigration on our nation... a nation of immigrants!

Fields
Arts
Business
Education
Media
Military
Non-Profit
Politics
Science
Sports
Miscellaneous

Arts

Business Education Media Military Non-Profit Politics Science Sports Miscellaneous

Medal Of Honor Immigrant Recipients

The Medal of Honor is the highest military award given by the United States government. Throughout several decades, immigrants have bravely defended the country that opened its doors to receive them, sometimes not so warmly. Despite injustice and prejudice, immigrants in the military have shown their love for the American flag through their bravery, strength and even willingness to give up their lives to defend what our country stands for.

The following is an excerpt from the US Department of Defense site on the history of the Medal of Honor:

The first formal system for rewarding acts of individual gallantry by the nation's fighting men was established by General George Washington on August 7, 1782. Designed to recognize "any singularly meritorious action," the award consisted of a purple cloth heart. Records show that only three persons received the ward: Sergeant Elijah Churchill, Sergeant William Brown, and Sergeant Daniel Bissel Jr.

The Badge of Military Merit, as it was called, fell into oblivion until 1932, when General Douglas MacArthur, then Army Chief of Staff, pressed for its revival. Officially reinstituted on February 22, 1932, the now familiar Purple Heart was at first an Army award, given to those who had been wounded in World War I or who possessed a Meritorious Service Citation Certificate. In 1943, the order was amended to include personnel of the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. Coverage was eventually extended to include all services and "any civilian national" wounded while serving with the Armed Forces.

Although the Badge of Military Merit fell into disuse after the Revolutionary War, the idea of a decoration for individual gallantry remained through the early 1800s. In 1847, after the outbreak of the Mexican-American War, a "certificate of merit" was established for any soldier who distinguished himself in action. No medal went with the honor. After the Mexican-American War, the award was discontinued, which meant there was no military award with which to recognize the nation's fighting men.

Early in the Civil War, a medal for individual valor was proposed to General-in-Chief of the Army Winfield Scott. But Scott felt medals smacked of European affectation and killed the idea. The medal found support in the Navy, however, where it was felt recognition of courage in strife was needed. Public Resolution 82, containing a provision for a Navy medal of valor, was signed into law by President Abraham Lincoln on December 21, 1861. The medal was "to be bestowed upon such petty officers, seamen, landsmen, and Marines as shall most distinguish themselves by their gallantry and other seamanlike qualities during the present war." Shortly after this, a resolution similar in wording was introduced on behalf of the Army. Signed into law July 12, 1862, the measure provided for awarding a medal of honor "to such noncommissioned officers and privates as shall most distinguish themselves by their gallantry in action, and other soldierlike qualities, during the present insurrection."

Although it was created for the Civil War, Congress made the Medal of Honor a permanent decoration in 1863. Almost 3,400 men and one woman have received the award for heroic actions in the nation's battles since that time.

* Quoted from "Armed Forces Decorations and Awards," a publication of the American Forces Information Service. Copies of the pamphlet are available upon request (in print format only), via the "DefenseLINK Comment/Question Form" in the "Questions" section.

List of Citations By War

  1. Civil War
  2. Indian War Campaigns
  3. Interim 1866-1870
  4. 1871 Korean Campaign
  5. Interim 1871-1898
  6. War with Spain
  7. Philippine Insurrection
  8. China Relief Expedition (Boxer Rebellion)
  9. Interim 1901-1911
  10. Mexican Campaign (Vera Cruz)
  11. Interim 1915-16
  12. World War I
  13. Interim 1920-1940
  14. World War II
  15. Korean War
  16. Vietnam


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