Established on January 11, 1905, the Civil War Campaign medal honors United States military members who carried out service in the Civil War between April 15, 1861 and April 9, 1865 with either the Union or Confederate forces. It is considered the United States’ first campaign medal, though it was issued only as a badge until 1956, when Congress approved the medal.
The medal is bronze and features the face of Abraham Lincoln in profile and an inscription reading “WITH MALICE TOWARD NONE - WITH CHARITY FOR ALL.” The reverse features an inscription reading “THE CIVIL WAR - 1861-1865” framed by a branch of oak and a branch of olive. The ribbon is blue on the right and gray on the left.
The award may be issued with the Silver Citation Star to indicate gallantry.