Favorite American Civil War General

Favorite Civil War General?

  • Robert E. Lee

    Votes: 11 20.0%
  • Ulysses S. Grant

    Votes: 21 38.2%
  • William T. Sherman

    Votes: 8 14.5%
  • Ambrose Burnside

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Nathan Bedford Forest

    Votes: 1 1.8%
  • Joseph Johnston

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • John Bell Hood

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • George C. McClellan

    Votes: 2 3.6%
  • Stonewall Jackson

    Votes: 6 10.9%
  • other

    Votes: 6 10.9%

  • Total voters
    55

EmperorTigerstar

Ad Honorem
Jun 2013
6,398
USA
Who is your overall favorite Civil War general?

I'd say Lee, simply because he's the main reason the CSA could hold off for so long. If he accepted the offer of supreme Union commander, the CSA would have been crushed in less than a year (or so. who knows?). How about you?
 

Salah

Forum Staff
Oct 2009
23,284
Maryland
Ulysses Grant, with honorable mentions to Robert E. Lee and Ambrose Burnside. Grant and Burnside have both received a lot of bad press they simply didn't deserve; Grant was probably one of the best - if not the best - military minds America has produced. On a personal level, I relate more to Grant than perhaps any other historical figure.

I find both Grant and Lee to be complicated human beings, I love to catch glimpses of their minds through their writings. I disdain Lee's cause and I also have a mixed evaluation of his military abilities, but I find the man underneath the legend very interesting. I'm under a familial obligation to name my son after him.

I believe any Confederate survivor of Nashville and Franklin would have been ethically justified in walking into Hood's tent and shooting him like a dog, I consider him perhaps the single most disgraceful general of the War for what he did at those battles.

The more I've learned about Sherman, the less I like him. But I think he saw the issues of his day with a clarity and an icy realism that very few of his contemporaries shared.

McClellan is probably my least favorite figure in American history. I have virtually no respect for his military abilities, but it is his post-Antietam conduct - namely, running for president in 1864 - that truly disgusts me.

I have a bipolar relationship with both Jackson and Forrest - in part, because of Jackson's seemingly bipolar military talents. Forrest was a beast on the battlefield and had a roughish charisma about him. On the other hand, he had made his fortune by selling human beings, and probably should have been tried for war crimes.

Johnston is a ghost-like figure in the pages of history; one of my favorite Civil War 'what-ifs' is the question of what would have happened if he hadn't been wounded at Seven Pines.

In short though, Grant is my favorite Union general. A. P. Hill, and to a lesser extent Lee and Longstreet are my favorite Rebels.
 

EmperorTigerstar

Ad Honorem
Jun 2013
6,398
USA
I believe any Confederate survivor of Nashville and Franklin would have been ethically justified in walking into Hood's tent and shooting him like a dog, I consider him perhaps the single most disgraceful general of the War for what he did at those battles.

McClellan is probably my least favorite figure in American history. I have virtually no respect for his military abilities, but it is his post-Antietam conduct - namely, running for president in 1864 - that truly disgusts me.
I agree with both of those points there.
 
Apr 2012
630
McClellan is probably my least favorite figure in American history. I have virtually no respect for his military abilities, but it is his post-Antietam conduct - namely, running for president in 1864 - that truly disgusts me.
Democracy disgusts you?

McClellan suffers because he is a foil to Lincoln. The other two runners against Lincoln, Fremont and Grant don't get the same treatment.
 

Apachewarlord

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
5,689
Hippy town U.S.A.!
Mine would be Grant. I share many of the sentiments that Salah said about the generals. I do have respect for Hood's abilities as a brigade and division commander though.

My favorites list would probably be Grant, Thomas, Longstreet, Burnside, and Sherman.
 

Tuthmosis III

Ad Honorem
Oct 2011
3,738
the middle ground
I don't have favorites per se but have soft spots for Meade, Thomas, Longstreet, Rosecrans, and J Johnston.
I think I may have a thing for under-appreciated caution now that I'm looking at this list... :zany:
 

Viperlord

Ad Honorem
Aug 2010
8,109
VA
I believe any Confederate survivor of Nashville and Franklin would have been ethically justified in walking into Hood's tent and shooting him like a dog, I consider him perhaps the single most disgraceful general of the War for what he did at those battles.
Here I have to disagree with the esteemed Salah. Hood made tactical errors at those engagements, but nothing that warranted his execution. After the bungling of the Spring Hill affair, where Hood devised an excellent plan to cut off Schofield from Thomas that got ruined largely by the bungling of several subordinates, including Bedford Forrest, Hood was presented with a choice; allow Schofield to withdraw and join Thomas, or let the dice fly and attack while he had the numbers on his side. It's not hard to see why he ordered the attack, and Schofield himself defended Hood for ordering the attack after the war.

Anyway, my favorite, of course, is the fellow in my avatar, Ulysses S. Grant. Other favorites include James Longstreet, George Thomas, John Gibbon, John Buford, Emory Upton, Samuel Curtis, John Logan, D.H. Hill, and Wade Hampton.
 
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