Richmond Pearson Hobson (17 August 1870 - 16 March 1937) was a United States Navy admiral who served from 1905-1915 as a Congressman from Alabama. A veteran of the Spanish-American War, he received the Medal of Honor years later for his part in that conflict.
He was born in Greensboro, Alabama, and graduated from the Naval Academy in 1889. After duty in Chicago he underwent additional training and was appointed Assistant Naval Constructor in 1891. Hobson then served at various Navy Yards and facilities, including a tour of duty as instructor at the Naval Academy.
In the early days of Spanish-American War, he was with Sampson in New York, and arrived off Santiago 1 June 1898. In order to bottle up Cervera's squadron Hobson took temporary command of collier Merrimac, which he would attempt to sink as an obstruction in the channel. The attempt was made early 3 June under heavy Spanish fire, which disabled the steering gear of the collier. Hobson did sink Merrimac, but was unable to place her in the shallowest part of the channel. With his intrepid crew of six, he was picked up by Admiral Cervera himself, and treated quite chivalrously for his gallant expedition.
Hobson was advanced 10 numbers in grade after the war and later, in 1933, awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroic attempt to block the channel. After the Spanish-American War he worked on the repairing and refitting of captured Spanish cruisers at Cavite and at various shore stations of the Navy.
Resigning in 1903, Hobson remained a staunch supporter of the Navy and during his subsequent career as a Congressman from Alabama, 1905-1915, was a firm advocate of naval expansion. In 1934, by special act of Congress, he was advanced to Naval Constructor with a rank of Rear Admiral, and placed on the retired list. Rear Admiral Hobson died 16 March 1937 in New York City.
The destroyer USS Hobson (DD-464) was named in his honor.