Title: Uniform, Dress, Coat, Admiral William Halsey
Accession #: NHHC 2011-148-77
Medium: Fabric, Metal
Location: Headquarters Artifact Collection, Naval History and Heritage Command
Fleet Admiral dress uniform coat of Admiral William Halsey, Jr. The double-breasted navy blue coat has six gold Navy buttons on the front and gold work on the sleeves denoting Fleet Admiral rank. The ribbon rack is sewn on the left chest and includes the Naval Aviator Insignia; Navy Cross; Navy Distinguished Service Medal with 3 gold stars; Army Distinguished Service Medal; Presidential Unit Citation with gold star; Mexican Service Medal; World War I Victory Medal with Destroyer Clasp; American Defense Service Medal with Fleet Clasp; American Campaign Medal; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with 12 battle stars; World War II Victory Medal; Philippine Liberation Medal with 2 stars; Order of the British Empire; Greece Order of the Redeemer; and Philippine Presidential Unit Citation.
Admiral Halsey became one of the most prominent Admirals in the US Navy. His nickname "Bull" highlighted one of his greatest strengths and greatest weaknesses. A 1904 graduate of the US Naval Academy, his career included sailing with President Theodore Roosevelt’s Great White Fleet, service off Mexico, World War I and World War II. He received the Navy Cross for commanding the USS Shaw (DD-68) during WWI.
Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, he led Allied forces during the Battles of Guadalcanal and Solomon Islands where a series of hit and run style attacks against the Japanese Navy in the Gilbert and Marshall islands greatly impacted the early war effort. He was appointed commander of Third fleet in 1943 and was part of the Battle of Leyte Gulf in 1944. During the battle he pursued Admiral Ozawa's Northern Decoy Force leaving the San Bernadino Strait undefended, resulting in the Battle of Cape Engano. Halsey's pursuit of the Northern Decoy Force left Taffy 3 to defend the coast of Samar where the Task Force met a large Japanese force and sustained heavy casualties.
After the war, Halsey was promoted to the rank of Fleet Admiral on December 11, 1945, only the fourth ever to hold the rank. FADM Halsey retired in March 1947.