Hey guys! Today I am writing about the differences between generals Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee for my history class. I think that these men are two of the most important military generals in American history. I chose these two men to write about because, although they fought opposite each other in the Civil War, they still admired each other. I think that this is pretty awesome because you have to have a tremendous amount of respect for one person in order to do that. My name is Caleb also known as Homeschooled Hero. I hope that you enjoy this essay!
Ulysses S. Grant was born in 1822 in Ohio. He was the only general to eventually become President of the United States (He served for 2 terms). He also served in the Mexican-American War (as did many other Civil War Generals). Grant was President Lincoln’s “right-hand” man throughout most of the war. Grant was a brilliant military tactician, whether it be offensive or defensive, he had a plan. Grant had the luxury of having lots of rations and supplies. Although he had these, he didn’t need it very much. He was able to fight off the troops of the Confederacy without much of the extra rations and supplies he had.
This however was not the case for general Robert E. Lee. Robert E. Lee was born in 1807 in Virginia. He was not as fortunate as general Grant because, he had joined the Confederacy which had succeeded from the Union. Since the Confederacy wasn’t part of the Union, they weren’t supplied by the Union. (That makes sense right?!) Lee didn’t seem to have a problem with this, he still lost men but so did the Union. Lee was also a brilliant tactician because he was able to fend off Grant’s far superior forces. (meaning that Grant a larger amount of troops.) Although he was able to fend them off, he was a rather risky fighter. He would take risks in the fights but, he would plan them out so that he wouldn’t lose many men. Although he tried to prevent the loss of many men, he couldn’t prevent all of them. Eventually he lost because he stand up against the sheer might and numbers of the Union Army.
Lee was eventually forced to surrender by Grant in Appomattox. The only reason that Lee had to surrender his force of about 28,000 troops.(Now I don’t know how many troops Grant had, but it had to be more than that) Lee is usually given the “award” of superior tactician because of his spectacular wins in places such as Potomac and Gettysburg. I would have to tend to agree because, Lee was always facing an army with far superior numbers to his and, to make it harder, he didn’t have very many supplies coming to him throughout most of the war.
Grant was a good tactician, but he was considered rough. He wasn’t thought of as smart like Lee was. He was considered weak because he fought with lots of reinforcements. Although that’s true, he didn’t really need all of them. While he did have this, it was rarely used and when it was, it was used well. Grant, to me, was an important person because, he led the men into battle and won. He didn’t win all battles, granted, but he won a lot. Lee was very similar only Lee wasn’t afraid to take risks. I think that if Grant and Lee fought for the same thing, they would be a force to be reckoned with.
One cool thing about Grant. He became the 18th president. He also served two terms in office. If I were to meet this man I think that it would be really cool. To think about something like that, it drives me crazy because, these men were very influential. (Time Machine turns on. Hops in). Let’s go back in time shall we?
Grant was influential because of his military tactics. He fought with large numbers and lost very few, in most of his battles. Lee fought differently, Lee fought with few soldiers but still won with few dead soldiers. Grant wasn’t always well known, there was once a time when Grant wasn’t known by really anyone. Lee was almost always known. He was pretty much a career military general.
These two generals could not get any more famous today. This is because the Civil War is still talked about like it is the most important event in American history. Although it is important, it isn’t the most important event ever. The Civil War is definitely something to be remembered because it is American history and it shows the way people will fight when they believe in something. (Please let me know what you think this war shows, in the comments below)
Grant and Lee were very different and yet very similar as well. They both were very skilled in planning out the next move. They both attempted to be one step ahead of the other side. They also would not have been able to do this if they hadn’t had the rest of the generals under their command. Without these men Grant and Lee would have failed early on. That is why they fought well, they had other’s input but they also had great minds. Have you ever heard the saying, “Great minds think alike”? Well that’s false, because otherwise nobody would come up with a novel idea without someone else already having thought of that same exact thing.
In conclusion, this war is one to be remembered. Grant and Lee were very impressive men but also very different. While they may be different they both admired each other. I think that Lee was probably the superior general because of how he was able to do what he did. Lee didn’t have nearly as many troops and supplies compared to Grant’s supply. Grant had a major surplus of supplies. Lee was actually probably the reason that later the U.S. started mass producing canned goods. The reason that I say this is because Lee constantly had very little amounts of supplies, so the U.S. started realizing that the very same thing could happen to them. Please like and subscribe to this blog. Also, be sure to check out some of my other writings. Be sure to be on the look out of my upcoming YouTube channel. I hope that you enjoyed this essay and please let me know what I should do for a quick story. Just a topic is needed but anything helps.
Until next time, your friendly neighborhood Homeschooler…