From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

Richard Price '47

Date of birth: unknown

Date of death: June 20, 1853

Age: unknown


Richard died of an unspecified illness on June 20, 1853 while aboard "storeship Lexington, at sea." (Information from an application by an heir — in 1901 — for $100 of back pay owned Richard. The application was located by volunteer Kathy Franz.)

USS Lexington (1825) was two days from New York, sailing to join Commodore Perry's expedition to Japan, when Richard was lost.

He was born in, and appointed to the Naval Academy from, Maryland.


From researcher Kathy Franz:

After graduating from the Academy, Richard asked that he and midshipman Alonzo Jackson (Class of 1847) be assigned together. Richard was on leave in Cumberland, Maryland, when he was assigned to the Taney. From 1849 to 1851, he was at the National Observatory, on the Congress and the St. Louis when he became ill with rheumatism and went to Hagerstown, Maryland. He came down with the flu in early 1853 in Cumberland. He wrote the Navy requesting not to be sent to Brazil anymore because of his rheumatism, and he was ordered to the Lexington. Because he lost the use of his right arm from rheumatism, he was unable to shave and asked permission to grow a beard which was against regulations. In May, he wrote that if his ship encountered the Ringgold expedition, he requested permission to bump off a lesser ranked man.

Since Richard visited both Cumberland and Hagerstown, I believe he was one of the five sons of William and Marian (Bruce) Price who lived in both cities. William was an attorney as was his son G. B. M. Price. (Note he had two middle initials as Richard had.) Another son was the famous architect Bruce Price, and his daughter was the famous etiquette authority Emily Post.


From the Naval History and Heritage Command:

Midshipman, 9 September, 1841. Passed Midshipman, 10 August, 1847. Died 20 June, 1853.

Navy Directories & Officer Registers

The "Register of Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Navy and Marine Corps" was published annually from 1815 through at least the 1970s; it provided rank, command or station, and occasionally billet until the beginning of World War II when command/station was no longer included. Scanned copies were reviewed and data entered from the mid-1840s through 1922, when more-frequent Navy Directories were available.

The Navy Directory was a publication that provided information on the command, billet, and rank of every active and retired naval officer. Single editions have been found online from January 1915 and March 1918, and then from three to six editions per year from 1923 through 1940; the final edition is from April 1941.

The entries in both series of documents are sometimes cryptic and confusing. They are often inconsistent, even within an edition, with the name of commands; this is especially true for aviation squadrons in the 1920s and early 1930s.

Alumni listed at the same command may or may not have had significant interactions; they could have shared a stateroom or workspace, stood many hours of watch together… or, especially at the larger commands, they might not have known each other at all. The information provides the opportunity to draw connections that are otherwise invisible, though, and gives a fuller view of the professional experiences of these alumni in Memorial Hall.

September 1842

Midshipman, on leave

Others at this command:

January 1843

Midshipman, Brig Bainbridge

October 1843

Midshipman, Brig Bainbridge

January 1844

Midshipman, Brig Bainbridge

January 1846

Midshipman, Frigate Raritan

Others at this command:

January 1848

Passed Midshipman, Schooner Taney

Others at this command:

January 1849

Passed Midshipman, Schooner Taney

January 1850

Passed Midshipman, Observatory, Washington

Others at this command:

January 1851

Passed Midshipman, Frigate Congress

Others at this command:

January 1852

Passed Midshipman, waiting orders

January 1853

Passed Midshipman, waiting orders

Class of 1847

Richard is one of 32 members of the Class of 1847 on Virtual Memorial Hall.

The "category" links below lead to lists of related Honorees; use them to explore further the service and sacrifice of the alumni in Memorial Hall.