The Minnesota Purple Heart Scholarship Program

November 27, 2023

Minnesota Military Order of the Purple Heart
Scholarship Program

 Click here to view the 2023 scholarship recipient.

To all Minnesota Educational Institutions

The Purple Heart is the military’s oldest medal. It was created in 1782 by General George Washington to recognize meritorious service and was known as the “Badge of Merit.” Throughout the centuries medals were reserved mostly for officers and monarchies. Washington, knowing the sacrifices made by the foot soldier, thought a medal of merit for his men might improve morale and create an “esprit de corps” among the ranks. The medal was awarded to only three soldiers during the Revolutionary Period, and then, was lost to time.

On Washington’s 200th birthday, February 22, 1932, General Douglas MacArthur resurrected the medal of merit for those killed in action, wounded in action or to prisoners of war who were extremely maltreated. The Purple Heart medal was created with a heart shape and has General George Washington’s silhouetted face to add to the prestige of this very distinguished award.
The Purple Heart is the ONLY decoration that attests, without question, to the bearer having been in combat. It can only be earned by the blood of Americans who spilled it on the battlefields throughout the world.

The Department of Minnesota Military Order of the Purple Heart wanted to create a scholarship for our youth because of the importance of education. It is also our hope that all student applicants will truly realize the “real” sacrifice made by all soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines. There is a price that is paid to live in a Republic like the United States with all of the individual rights we have as citizens. That cost that can never be repaid because it is paid for by lives lost and the blood shed by our nations service members.
“We fight not because we hate what is in front of us, but because we love what is behind us.”

This year, the Department of Minnesota has decided to present two (2) $1,500.00 scholarships for the best essays written about the Purple Heart or its recipients… Below are suggestions that students may refer to for writing their essays.

Examples of topics for the research papers can include the following:

  • Any Minnesota Purple Heart recipient wounded or killed in action e.g., father, grandfather, brother…
  • Any Minnesota Army, Navy, Marine, Air Force or Coast Guard units (active, National Guard or Reserves) deployed in combat, battles, casualties…
  • Minnesota Veteran Service Organizations named after service members killed in action e.g., McConnell-Modeen VFW Post 137 in Duluth
  • Minnesota Purple Heart POW/MIA’s
  • Minnesota Medal of Honor recipients wounded or posthumously awarded
  • History of the Purple Heart Medal (Revolutionary Period, pre-World War II and its evolution)
  • Any original paper regarding the Purple Heart


  • Students must be enrolled in a Minnesota college, secondary school or in the trades
  • The essay shall be a minimum of four (4), maximum of ten (10) double spaced pages in length
  • It shall have listed sources of information
  • Must maintain a 2.5 or higher-grade point average
  • Scholarships will be presented every spring and a check will be written to the educational institution the scholarship awardee attends or will attend in 2024
  • Submissions will be open on December 1, 2023
  • Deadline for submission of students’ essays will be February 29, 2024

The applicant with the best written essay on the aforementioned topics or original Purple Heart history will receive the scholarship award. Both awards will be presented to the scholarship recipients in April of 2024. The research essays will become the property of the Department of Minnesota Military Order of the Purple Heart. They may be preserved in state, county or city historical websites.

All applications and essays must be mailed to:

Minnesota Military Order of the Purple Heart
C/o William Bull – Finance Officer
22470 CSAH 14
Darwin, MN. 55324


Minnesota Military Order of the Purple Heart
C/O John Marshall – Commander
20 West 12th Street
St. Paul, MN. 55155

Click here for

MOPH Scholorship Application

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