Saturday 19 December 2015

General Beard

I suspect that you are damned ignorant about US Civil War generals, even if you're American  . . . even if you come from Virginia. Accordingly I've cobbled together a quiz and a survey.
1) Which of the following fought for the Confederacy and which for the Union [in which I really asking the question: which side paid more attention to grooming?]
William Mahone; JEB Stuart; Richard Ewell; Ulysses S Grant
Ambrose Burnside; John Hunt Morgan; Joseph E Johnston; Alpheus Williams
Stewart van Vliet; Samuel Sprigs Carroll; J Johnston Pettigrew; Thomas Leonidas Crittenden
2) Which one has the most extravagant facial hair? Gereral Burnside's rolling white wave was so distinctively noticeable as to give English the word 'sideburns'.
  • Mahone, at 1.65m and 45kg was known as Little Billy "He was every inch a soldier, though there were not many inches of him."
  • Stuart was killed at the Battle of Yellow Tavern in May 1864.
  • Ewell was wounded in his wooden leg at Gettysburg
  • Grant went on the become President. 
  • See above for Burnside's sideburns
  • John Hunt Morgan was the uncle of pioneer geneticist Thomas Hunt Morgan [blob previously].
  • This General Johnston is not to be confused with Gen. Albert S. Johnston who fought on the same side.
  • Alpheus Williams fought much of the war on a horse called Plug Ugly 
  • Stewart van Vliet graduated from West Point in the class of 1840 a dozen of his 42 class-mates became Civil War Generals, including Ewell on our list - about half Union and half Confederate.  The Class of 1915 is called the Class the Stars Fell On. 1840 and 1915 tell you that a) it takes 25 years to grow a general and b) there are more generals and more opportunities for promotion if a major conflict arrives 25ish years after you get your commission.
  • Carroll died of pneumonia at the age of sixty: his lungs were shot at Rapidan River in 1862 and never really recovered.
  • Pettigrew was horribly wounded leading his Brigade during Pickett's Charge at Gettysburg and shot and killed a few days later trying to cross the Potomac
  • Crittenden had a brother who was a general on the other side.
There, TMI on the general front. I hope they come up in a Pub Quiz before you forget who had a wooden horse called Potomac.

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