Life Saving medal
The Congressional Life Saving Medal (in gold and silver) was authorized by an Act of Congress on June 20, 1874 to be bestowed to a U.S Citizen who rescues or attempts the rescue of any person from drowning, shipwreck or other peril of the water, or to the rescuer of a U.S. citizen.
Benson John Lossing, ed. Harper's Encyclopedia of United States History (vol. 5) (New York, NY: Harper and Brothers, 1912)