:THE REMARKABLE HISTORY OF
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THE REfIARKABLE HISTORY OF
ULYSSES S. GRANT,
GENERAL OF THE ARMIES OF THE UNITED STATES.
HIS is the story of a great soldier and a good man. Everybody likes to
see soldiers marching, with their drums and guns and flags and uni-
forms. They make a fine sight, and the boys and girls all hurrah and
clap their hands as the regiments march by. But when these soldiers
go marching to battle, it is quite another thing. For war is terrible, and some
of the best and bravest soldiers hate it the most.
Sometimes, however, great questions and bitter quarrels can only be settled
by war and fighting, and then it is well for the people to have their armies led
to battle by such a great and gallant soldier as this story tells about.
His name was Ulysses Simpson Grant. He was born in a little town, out
in Ohio, called Point Pleasant, on the twenty-seventh of April, in the year 1822.
The house in which he was born is still standing. It is on the banks of the Ohio
River, and you can look across to Kentucky, on the other side of the river.
When Ulysses was only a year old his father moved to a place called
Georgetown, not far away, and there he spent his boyhood.
He was a strong, healthy, go-ahead little fellow, who did not like to go to
school very well. But, if he had anything to do, either in work or play, he stuck
to it, until it was done.
When he was seventeen years old, Ulysses was sent to the splendid school
among the beautiful highlands of the Hudson River, in New York, where boys
are taught to become soldiers of the United States Army. This is called the
United States Military Academy, at West Point.
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He staid four years at this famous
school. He did not like the school part -: i
of it any more at West Point than lhei
did at his Ohio school-house, but lih
loved horses, and became a fine horse-
When he left West Point, he was made second lieutenant in the United
States Army. He went home, but in a year or two there was a war between
the United States and the country that joins us on the south. It is called Mexico,
and this war is called the Mexican War.
Young Ulysses Grant went to this war as first lieutenant, and fought the
Mexicans in many bloody battles. He was a daring young officer, and his men
followed willingly wherever he led. In one of the hardest battles in this war
with Mexico-the battle of Monterey-the American soldiers charged into the
town and then got out of ammunition-that is, powder and shot. To get any
more, some one would have to ride straight through the fire of the Mexicans,
who were in the houses of the town; so the general did not think he could order
any soldier to do this. But he asked who would do it. That is what is meant
by calling for volunteers.
Lieutenant Grant at once said he would go. He mounted his horse, but
slipped over on the side furthest from the houses in which the Mexicans were
hiding. Then he set his horse on a gallop, and so dashed through the town and
past all the hostile houses, and brought back the ammunition in safety.
He did many other brave and soldierly things when he was a young officer
in this war with Mexico, but he was always such a modest man that he never
liked to tell of his courageous deeds. When he did, he would generally say:
"0, well; the battle would have been won, just as it was, if I had not been
there." The brave men and the bravest boys, you know, never boast.
In another of these battles in the Mexican war-it has a long, hard name-
Chepultepec, young Grant was so bold and brave that his name was picked out
as that of one of the bravest soldiers in the fight.
At another time, when a strong fort was in the path of the Americans,
Lieutenant Grant dragged a small cannon away up into a church steeple, and
pointing it at the fort, fired his cannon balls so swift and straight and sure that
the Mexican soldiers had to run out of the fort, and the Americans marched into
it and soon after took the city it had defended. And when the news of this
fight was sent home to the United States, young Grant's brave act was made a
part of it, and he was promoted to be a captain. The Mexicans were defeated
in many battles, and, at last the cruel war was ended. The Americans were vic-
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torious and marched
back north to their
Then Captain .
Grant married his '|
wife; but, soon after, '', -
he had to go without
her to California and
Oregon, where his ''"; A
regiment was sent.
He had a hard time i
getting there, for the.
broke out while the '
soldiers were on the i :
way, and if it had not
been for Captain 0h:
Grant's bravery and a
devotion most of the
soldiers and their A t
wives and children -w. .
would have died.
You see, a man -
can be just as brave '
taking care of sick
people as when fight-
ing in battle.
After he had been GR.-.TFTER B.TTLE OF
in Oregon for a while BL.A O.\' T.
he got tired of doing nothing, so he gave Iup) bein a
soldier, and went back to his little farm near St.
Louis, in Missouri. He lived in a log house on this farm with his wife and
children, and at times was quite poor. He tried farming, and buying and selling
horses and collecting bills, and, at last, moved from St. Louis to the town of
Galena, in Illinois, where he was a tanner and made leather with his father and
While Grant was an unknown tanner in Illinois a dreadful thing happened
in America. The Northern and Southern States, which, joined together, made
these United States of America, became angry with each other over things that,
some day, you will learn all about in school.
The South said: "We won't stay in the Union any longer."
The North said: "You've got to stay. We won't let you go."
But the South determined to go, and, in the year 1861, they had gone and
had made a new nation of themselves. Then the North said the South could
not go and should not go, and tried to keep them in the Union by force.
They began to fight with each other, and there was a terrible war in the
land. We call it now the War of the Rebellion, or the Civil War.
Captain Grant joined the army at once and marched away to the war with
some soldiers from his own town, and, after a while, he was given command of
a regiment and made a colonel. Soon after that he was promoted to be a
After the war had been going on for several months the men who were at
the head of things found out what a good soldier General Grant was, and he was
given command of a large number of men and marched with them against the
Confederates, as the Southern soldiers were called.
There were some hard battles fought, among them that of Belmont, on the
Mississippi, at which village a severe engagement took place. But Grant was
victorious, and at last he got the Confederate soldiers cooped up in a place called
When the general of the Confederate soldiers asked General Grant how he
could save his soldiers and get out of the fort alive, the General said: "Uncon-
ditional surrender." That means "give me your fort and all your soldiers and
guns and flags and swords. Then I will not fight you. If you will not do this,
I shall make you."
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GRANT AT SHILOH.
There was no other way, so the Confederates surrendered Fort Donelson.
It was a great victory for the Northern soldiers, and everybody praised General
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Grant at HeadquarternsVirginia.
Grant. Then he marched to another place. It was called Shiloh. There was
a terrible battle here. At first it was almost a defeat for the Union soldiers, but
General Grant stuck to it and fought so bravely, that at last the Confederates
were beaten and driven back.
It was the first great battle of the war. It continued through two April
days-Saturday and Sunday. The Confederates were led by their best and
bravest general, Albert Sidney Johnston. Had it not been for General Grant's
bravery, determination, persistence and good leadership, the Northern troops
would surely have been beaten, and the Union cause would have been sadly
But he stuck to it. He must win, that was all. And he did win. He rode
up and down the line all that terrible Saturday and Sunday, giving orders,
directing and encouraging his men. For he knew that they were mostly
soldiers who had never seen a battle, and he knew that unless they were made
braver by the courage and bravery of their leaders, they would not make good
So all through this dreadful Battle of Shiloh, in which the dash and bravery
of the South first met the courage and endurance of the North, General Grant
was in the thick of it, inspiring his soldiers, bringing victory out of defeat, and
showing the world what a great general he really was.
So he kept driving the Confederate soldiers off whenever he fought them.
They were brave, too, for they also were Americans. But they had not so great
a general to lead them in battle. At last Grant got the Southern army cooped up
in a town called Vicksburg. He marched his soldiers against it and built forts
around it and banged away at it with his great cannons until at last, when
the Confederates in the town could get no help and could not get away, they
gave up the town and all its forts and soldiers and guns to General Grant.
That was the surrender of Vicksburg. It was another splendid victory.
Then General Grant was promoted to be a major general, and marched off
to fight moreof the bold Southern soldiers. He fought them again at a place
called Chattanooga, among the mountains. This was so hard a battle and so
great a victory for General Grant that the United States gave him a gold medal
to remember it. Then he was given command of all the armies of the United
States. So far he had fought in the West. Now he came east and took the lead
of all the Northern soldiers in Virginia, which was called the Army of the Potomac.
He fought the Confederates
and their brave leader, Gen-
eral Lee, for a whole year
in Virginia. There were
some dreadful battles.
There never were harder
ones in all the world. But
General Grant knew that if
'r L he wished to win, he must
Fight hard and terribly. The
hardest fighting of all that
cruel war was now to come,
A you see. It was in the
region that separated the
the capital of the United
States, and Richmond, the
Much of the fighting was
Y, in a section covered with
thick woods and under-
brush, and called "The
Wilderness." For sixteen
days the two armies faced
GRANT AT WINDSOR CASTLE. each other in this wilder-
ness, so close together that
they could talk across, and so, watching by night and fighting by day, the two
generals, Lee, the Confederate, and Grant, the Union leader, fought each other
in the most tremendous and desperate battles of modern times.
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Grant on the Fleld,lLast year of the War.
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They ended at last, not by really defeating Lee, but by forcing him back,
inch by inch, until Grant and his soldiers got nearer to Richmond. You see,
the men of the North and the men of the South had grown now to be trained
and courageous soldiers, and they were so equally matched in numbers, bravery
and determination, and were so ably led by their commanding generals that the
conflict was a stubborn and desperate one.
But General Grant would not be defeated. He never gave up; and when, in
the hot weather, things seemed going badly and he was asked what he meant to
do, he said, "Fight it out on this line, if it takes all summer."
It did take all summer, and all the winter, too; but, at last, this great soldier
was successful. The Southerners were beaten, and their gallant leader, General
Lee, at a place called Appomatox, on. the ninth of April, 1865, surrendered all
his soldiers and flags and guns to General Grant. It was the end to a long and
bitter war. Probably no other soldier in America could have defeated Gen-
eral Lee and his soldiers except General Grant. The Southern soldiers were
brave and determined; they were desperate; for they knew if they did not beat
Grant and capture Washington the cause of the South must be given up.
So they fought on, even after they began to get hungry and ragged, and
the South was poor and empty. Gradually, however, they grew weaker; and
still General Grant kept at it, forcing them back, back, until at last they fled from
Richmond. The Southern soldiers were beaten or captured, and, as I have told
you, General Lee surrendered, at last, to General Grant at Appomatox. The
war was over. The North had won the great fight that had lasted through four
terrible years, and General U. S. Grant was hailed as "the Conqueror."
It is hard for the boys and girls who have quarreled and got the best of it,
not to clap their hands and talk big. It is even harder for men and women.
But General Grant, when he had won the victory, would not "crow" over the
defeated Southerners. "They are Americans," he said.
He gave them back their horses so, that they could plough their farms for
planting; he gave them food and clothes, and sent them away friends; he said
to North and South alike: "The war is over. Let us have peace."
Of course his great success made him a hero. He was one. But he hated
to be so talked about; he never made a show of himself, nor said, as a good many
boys and men do when they have done something fine: "Look at me!" General
GRANT IN JAPAN.
Grant was quiet, modest and silent. Of course, the world thought all the more
of him because he did not try to put himself forward. His own land thought so
much of him that they made him President of the United States, two times, just
as they did Washington. It was a pretty good rise for a little Western farmer boy
and tanner, wasn't it? After he was through being President he left his country
and traveled around the world, and the world did him honor.
Kings and queens and princes invited him to their palaces and were glad
to see him. He visited the Queen of England in her palace of Windsor Castle;
he talked with the soldiers and statesmen of the world, while emperors honored
him as one of the world's famous men, and cities welcomed him as the foremost
general of the day and the man who had been President of the world's
Amid all these festivities, in all lands and in all scenes set to do him honor,
General Grant was still the same modest, quiet, silent man he had been all his
life. The brilliant carnival at Havana, which he saw and which honored him, the
curious and strange surroundings in far-off Japan, where they were beginning to
think and act for themselves; the court of China, which few Americans had ever
seen; the storied lands of the East-Jerusalem, Damascus, Constantinople,
Alexandria-all these he visited, and in all he was welcomed and pointed out to
the boys and girls of every nation,, tribe and land as the great American-the
visitor from the land beyond the sea. Great men, wherever he went, called upon
him and made friends with him, and, as I have said, the people everywhere, in
Japan and China, and Egypt and Turkey, and Russia and Germany, and Italy
and France and England ran after him just as their kings and princes had done.
They hurrahed for him and made much of him-more than any man in all the
world had ever before been so honored and entertained.
For, you see, people everywhere knew that General Grant was a great man,
who, by his patience, his preseverance, his wisdom and his will had carried a mighty
nation through a terrible war, won it; had been made the chief man of that nation,
and shown all the world how a man can be a great soldier and yet a quiet, simple,
modest man. But they were to see him fight one other battle-the hardest
that any boy or girl, any man or woman can fight-the battle against wrong and
death. He came back from his travels round the world, and as he did not like
to be idle, he put what money he had into business and began, so he thought, to
General Grant at Havauna.(Tlhe
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grow rich. He made his home
people who honored him had
given him as a token of their
respect and affection and their
pride in the man who had
done so much for them in
four years of war, and who
had governed his native land
as President through eight
years of peace.
But his business ventures
turned outbadly. A wretched
man worked against him,
using his honorable name to
mislead the people, and taking
for himself both their money
and that of General Grant.
All of a sudden the end
came. The bad man ran
away andGeneral Grant found
himself without a cent. All
his money was gone, and,
worse than that, others who
had trusted in him had lost
their money, too. It broke
the great general down. It
almost defeated the soldier
who had never known defeat.
It made him weak and sick.
But, just as he had marched
to war courageously, so, now,
he faced disaster just .as
in New York City, in a fine house which the
GENERAL GRANT'S HOUSE, N. Y., 1885.
bravely. He .set to work to make his losses good, and, because all the world
wished to hear about him, he began to write the story of his life and his battles.
He kept himself alive to do this. For over a year he fought ruin and a
terrible pain as stoutly as he had ever battled with real soldiers, while all the
world looked on in love and pity, and kings and beggars sent him words of
sympathy. He won the fight, for he did not give up until his book was finished.
Then he died.
On the twenty-first of July, in the year 1885, on the mountain top to which
he had been carried, near Saratoga, in New York, General Grant died, and all the
world mourned a great man gone.
The world mourned; men and women everywhere had learned to honor the
great general as much for his victories over disaster, disgrace and pain as for his
conquests in war and his governing in peace. His funeral, on Saturday, August
eighth, 1885, was one of the grandest public ceremonials ever seen in America.
The President of the United States, senators, governors, generals, judges and
famous men came to New York to show their sorrow and esteem, and the poor boy
of the western prairies was buried amid the solemn tolling of bells and firing of
cannon, while all people and all lands sent words of sorrow and of sympathy
to the republic which had so honored him in death as it had honored him in life.
Upon a beautiful knoll in a beautiful park in New York rises a stately
monument above his tomb. In the City of Chicago, in the State from which he
came from poverty to fame, another splendid monument towers in his honor.
His is not an uncommon name, and yet in all America, in all the world,
there is but one Grant!
His story is one from which even the smallest boy and the tiniest girl can
learn something. For it teaches them to be persistent, yet modest; strong, yet
simple; magnanimous in victory; patient in distress and defeat.
He was a great soldier, but he hated war; yet when he had to fight, he did
fight, and nothing could put him aside from the end he had in view.
Though he became the foremost man of the world, he was always a quiet,
modest and simple American gentleman, and, when he had to face both pain and
loss, he did so, patiently, uncomplainingly and heroically, never giving in until
he had done what he had determined to do. To be a great soldier is a fine
thing; to be a noble, truthful, simple man is still finer. General Grant was both;
and while the boys and girls of America will never forget the battles and victories
won for their sake, let them also never forget that it was his simplicity, his loyalty,
his devotion, his persistence and his honor that made all the world respect and
love Ulysses Simpson Grant as a great American.
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GRANT FUNERAL PROCESSION.