Above is a digital recording of a November 1930 radio interview with Indian wars veteran and Medal of Honor recipient Leander Herron. Herron, 83, was a guest on the weekly Chevrolet Chronicles radio program, hosted by famed World War I flying ace and fellow Medal of honor recipient Eddie Rickenbacker. In the fall of 1868 Corporal Herron had been stationed at Fort Larned, Kansas, amid heightened tensions and frequent raids by Plains warriors on wagon trains and settlers. He received his Medal of Honor for conspicuous bravery in the face of overwhelming odds. On the night of September 2–3 he and fellow Corporal Patrick “Paddy” Boyle set out from Fort Dodge to deliver dispatches the 60-odd miles northeast to Fort Larned. Not far from the post they happened across an Army firewood wagon and its four-soldier escort under attack by nearly 50 Kiowas and galloped into the fray to assist the besieged soldiers. While Boyle rode for reinforcements, Herron organized a desperate defense. He and his companions were down to just a dozen rounds among them the next morning when saved by a charge of cavalrymen who had galloped the 11 miles from Fort Dodge to their rescue.
By the advent of broadcast radio most veterans of the Indian wars had passed away, thus such recordings are priceless to those seeking a firsthand perspective of this dramatic period of American history.
The first voice on the recording is that of Rickenbacker, followed by Herron.
For more on Leander Herron, see “The Hero of Little Coon Creek,” by Jeff Broome, in the August 2021 Wild West.