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Ulysses S. Grant

One of the most famous generals of the Civil War, Ulysses S. Grant was an 1843 graduate of the United States Military Academy. He served two terms as 18th President of the United States from 1869 to 1877. Prior to the Civil War, Grant left the army and proceeded to fail at farming and other enterprises. With the outbreak of war, he returned to the military and became an officer in the Union Army. Grant achieved fame with the surrender of Fort Donelson in February 1862, at Shiloh in April 1862, and later during the successful siege of Vicksburg, concluded on July 4, 1863. Although Grant had a reputation as a heavy drinker, Lincoln recognized that he was also a fighter and promoted him to command of all Union armies in the field in 1864. Grant conducted a relentless campaign of attrition against General Robert E. Lee and the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia from the spring of 1864 until the end of the war a year later. While the Union army sustained heavy casualties in such battles as the Wilderness, Spotsylvania, and Cold Harbor, Grant realized that the war would be won only when the Confederacy was no longer able to muster sufficient numbers of men to bear arms against the growing strength of the Union forces. With Lee’s surrender at Appomattox on April 9, 1865, Grant’s strategy was somewhat vindicated. Grant died of throat cancer in 1885 at the age of 63.

Jefferson Davis in Mexico

Jefferson Davis in Mexico

On September 20, 1846, Colonel Jefferson Davis and a regiment of untested Mississippi volunteers stood before the fortress of La Teneria in Northern Mexico.   More »

Fieldworks: An Essential Tool in the American Civil War

Fieldworks: An Essential Tool in the American Civil War

When no one was actively shooting at them, Civil War soldiers despised the hard physical labor required to construct fieldworks. As one officer of the 2nd Michigan Infantry recalled, “Soldiers would rather march all day than shovel for an hour.” Another Union soldier, Sergeant George Tipping of the 155th New   More »

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The USO Turns 75: American soldiers’ “Home Away From Home”

The USO Turns 75: American soldiers’ “Home Away From Home”

During WWII, the unique civilian organization did much to boost the morale of soldiers at home and abroad.

Lloyd Fredendall: The General Who Failed at the Kasserine Pass

Lloyd Fredendall: The General Who Failed at the Kasserine Pass

Acclaimed General Lloyd Fredendall lost his command after the debacle at the Battle of the Kasserine Pass.

The Spies of Pearl Harbor

The Spies of Pearl Harbor

The surprise attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, benefited from the firsthand observation of spies on Oahu.

The 93rd Infantry Division: The Only African-American Division in the Pacific Theater

The 93rd Infantry Division: The Only African-American Division in the Pacific Theater

Elements of America’s 93rd Infantry Division (Colored) fought discrimination at home and captured the highest ranking Japanese officer in the Pacific.

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