Pair to LCDR Frank Branch, US Navy

Product ID: B-2175
Country: United States
Condition: VF

Pair to Lt Commander Frank O. Branch, US Navy: Spanish Campaign Medal, numbered “5462″, split brooch, second style ribbon; Philippine Campaign Medal, Navy, numbered “3399″, split brooch. Both medals are Bailey, Banks and Biddle strikes. With extensive photocopied service records, including the December 1917 letter of transmittal for the medals indicating the Spanish Campaign Medal was for service aboard USS Iowa and the Philippine Campaign Medal was for service aboard USS Isla de Luzon, which had been seized from the Spanish during the Spanish-American War. The gunboat operated out of Zamboanga. Branch’s Spanish Campaign Medal is unusual in that it was for service in the West Indies after the West Indies Campaign Medal was no longer issued, but before the Bastian Brothers three-ring version was issued.

Branch entered the Naval Academy in 1895 from Indiana and served as a naval cadet during the Spanish-American War. While the transmittal letters notes service aboard USS Iowa during the campaign, he is not listed on the ship’s roster as of 1 July 1898, so he was not issued a Sampson Medal. Branch was retired on a medical disability in 1904, but returned to active duty during World War I as a recruiting officer in Youngstown, Ohio, and Indianapolis, Indiana. He was advanced to lieutenant commander on the retired list in 1930. He died in April 1948.