Gideon Welles (July 1, 1802 – February 11, 1878) was the United States Secretary of the Navy from 1861 to 1869. His buildup of the Navy to successfully execute blockades of Southern ports was a key component of Northern victory of the Civil War. Welles was also instrumental in the Navy's creation of the Medal of Honor.
Benson John Lossing, ed. Harper's Encyclopedia of United States History (vol. 10) (New York, NY: Harper and Brothers, 1912)
Courtesy the private collection of Roy Winkelman