Swiss American Historical Society Review

Swiss American Historical Society Review


Albert Winkler


Expansion, Frontier, American


The Swiss have made many valuable contributions to the development

of the United States, including the westward expansion, and people

from Switzerland participated in some of the most significant events

and activities in the development of the American frontier. They were

involved in treks to the West, were found in many mining camps and in

pioneer settlements, and served in the US Army. Among the most celebrated

Swiss soldiers was Ernest Yeuve, from Neuchatel, who received

the Congressional Medal of Honor for driving off an Indian warrior in

1874 after brief hand-to-hand combat. His citation commended him for

the "gallant manner in which he faced a desperate Indian." No less

bravely, other men from Switzerland also fought in the campaigns of the

American West, including the Battle of the Little Bighorn in 1876.