Front: James E. Hanger, Churchville, Virginia, February 25, 1843, June 9, 1919, Patriot ~ Soldier ~ Inventor, Honorably served with the Churchville Cavalry (Militia) which became Co. I, 14th Va. Cav. Regt.
Back: 18 year old James Edward Hanger was in his second year at Washington College studying engineering when the threatened invasion of Virginia caused him to return home to enlist to defend his country. June 3, 1861 found him a trooper of Co. I, 14th Virginia Cavalry engaged against the foreign invaders at the Battle of Philippi, Virginia. A cannonball shattered his left leg, he was taken prisoner and his limb amputated. He was exchanged in late August 1861 and returned home to successfully invent the first artificial leg with a flexible knee and ankle. The Confederate Government granted him two patents in 1861. He moved to Richmond and opened a factory. Ten years later he received a U.S. patent, and in 1888 relocated his company to Washington, DC. His sic sons followed into the business opening factories in London and Paris during WW1. In his company’s first 85 years, it rehabilitated a quarter million amputees. Today his company is the worlds largest make of prosthetics.