The US Government formed the Palmetto Regiment to engage in hostilities that arose with the Mexican government.
The Citadel graduating class of 1846 trained the junior officers of The Palmetto Regiment prior to their departure for the Mexican War. One member of that class, William Magill, became the first Citadel graduate to serve in the regular US Army joining BG Zachary Taylor's 3rd U.S. Dragoons Cavalry Regiment. He also served in Mexico with six non-graduates (Citadel alumni nonetheless). All of those listed below died as a result of their service in the Mexican War. J. H. Howell, an ex-cadet from the class of 1846, became the first alumnus to fall in battle. Allan Little has a different story: as a result of his heroism during the war, the SC Legislature awarded a full scholarship to Little, and he became The Citadel's first veteran cadet. Little graduated in 1852 as the first Honor Graduate, but he died in 1854 from the war wounds inflicted on him earlier in Mexico.
|Class||Rank, Name, Unit||Battle||Death Date|
|1846||Judah Alexander||Battlefield Disease, Perote, Mexico||June 19, 1847|
|1846||J. H. Howell (Palmetto Regiment)||KIA, Puebla, Mexico||November 6, 1847|
|1846||McBelton O'Nealle||DOW, Churubrusco, Mexico||December 1847|
|1848||Pearcall Graham||KIA, Mexico City||November 22, 1847|
|1849||Eugene Wilder||KIA, Churubusco, Mexico||August 20, 1847|
|1852||Allen H. Little (Palmetto Regument)||WIA, Garita de Belen||August 1854|