Frank A. Vanderlip was pivotal in shaping the nation's banking system and establishing its global economic influence.
Herbert Hoover served as the United States Food
Administrator during World War I. As the head of the Food Administration, he
was tasked with ensuring the efficient production, distribution, and
conservation of food resources at a time when the country was challenged with
feeding its own population plus its European allies.
Hoover recognized the urgent need to increase food
production and launched nationwide campaigns encouraging farmers to boost their
yields. In addition, he appealed to their patriotism, emphasizing the
importance of their contribution to the war effort. As a result, farmers were
encouraged to plant "victory gardens" in their backyards, substantially
increasing homegrown food production.
Hoover also focused on the conservation of resources. He
implemented rationing measures and introduced "Meatless Mondays" and
"Wheatless Wednesdays" to conserve supplies for the troops. These
initiatives ensured food availability and fostered a sense of solidarity among
Americans, encouraging them to make sacrifices for the greater good.
Hoover implemented food relief efforts for war-torn
Europe, establishing the United States Food Administration's American Relief
Administration (ARA), which provided crucial assistance to European countries
devastated by the war. The ARA organized and coordinated the distribution of
food aid, alleviating hunger and preventing further destabilization.
Hoover's efforts as Food Administrator earned him the
title "The Great Humanitarian." His wartime experiences shaped his
belief in the importance of international cooperation and relief efforts, providing
him with valuable insights into managing and alleviating hunger on a massive
scale. He employed that knowledge later in his relief work during and after
World War II.
Porter graduated from West
Point in 1845 and fought in the Mexican War at Veracruz, Cerro Gordo, and
Molino del Rey, among other battles. From 1849 to 1853, he served as a cavalry
and artillery instructor at West Point.
Porter’s troops were in the
thick of the fighting throughout the Seven Days Campaigns. His men often formed
the rear guard, protecting McClellan’s retreat. Porter set up the defenses at
Malvern Hill and, along with his artillery officer, Henry Hunt, placed the guns
that did their deadly work cutting up Lee’s army.
David Strother, writing as Porte Crayon, described General Heintzelman as “a grim, grizzled veteran, who looks as if he had mettle in him.”
Heintzelman graduated from
West Point in 1826, fought in the Seminole Wars in Florida, the Mexican War,
then in the expedition to put down the Yuma Indian uprising in 1851.
During the Civil War,
Heintzelman had two of the most aggressive field commanders in his
corps—Fighting Joe Hooker and Philip Kearny. As a result, his corps fought in
the thick of the action during the Peninsula Campaign and the Seven Days
And yet, for all his military
experience, Heintzelman lacked imagination, ingenuity, and the ability to
command a large body of men. Hooker and Kearny made him look good but take them
away, and Heintzelman was lost.
called Joseph Hooker Fighting Joe, but he was never comfortable with that
sobriquet. “It sounds to me like a fighting fool,” he said. “People will think
I’m a highwayman or a bandit.”
His men liked
him well enough, but his fellow officers had doubts. Hooker often spoke before
he thought. He called Lincoln “incompetent” and proclaimed the saving hope of
the country required a “military dictatorship.”
before Lincoln appointed Hooker commander-in-chief, Ambrose Burnside
recommended that the president dismiss him from the military. He accused Hooker
of creating dissent among his fellow officers and suggested he was nothing but
a big bugaboo who “made statements which were calculated to create incorrect
Like many of
his fellow West Point classmates, Hooker fought in the Mexican and Seminole
Wars, then resigned from the peacetime army, hoping to find success in civilian
life. He tried his hand at farming and real estate speculation and even took a
crack at politics in California, but nothing seemed to work for him.
civil war broke out, Hooker rejoined the army as a brigadier general and served
at Williamsburg, South Mountain, and Antietam.
agreed that Joseph Hooker cut the most dashing figure in the Union army. He was
tall and handsome, with big blue eyes and long, flowing blonde hair. If that
didn’t make him stick out like a sore thumb, picture the general dashing
everywhere on the battlefield sitting astride a big white stallion.
Pope appeared to have a man crush on Hooker. He remembered him as a handsome
young man with a florid complexion and fair hair and with a figure agile and
graceful. “As a corps commander, with his whole force operating under his own
eye,” said Pope, “it is much to be doubted whether Hooker had a superior in the
Stonewall Jackson earned
his name at Stone Bridge, about four miles north of Manassas Junction. General
Barnard Bee’s troops had been under heavy fire all day. At about 2 o’clock, his
force had dwindled to almost nothing. Bee rode up and down the line encouraging
the men to give it their all. Finally, when
it looked as if everything was lost, he approached General Thomas Jackson and
said, “General, they are beating us back.”
Jackson replied, “Sir, we will give them the bayonet.”
General Bee rallied his troops and urged his men on, saying, “There is Jackson,
standing like a stone wall.” Moments later, General Bee got cut down, leading
his men into battle.
History remembers General Thomas Jackson as “Stonewall”
His genius on the battlefield was offset
by the quirkiness of his character. He often walked around with one arm in the
air, reportedly to balance the blood in his body. For some reason, he believed
one side of his body was heavier than the other.
acted the same way on horseback, often riding with one arm raised in the air.
was a brilliant tactician on the battlefield, second only to Robert E. Lee.
Jackson tied up Federal troops in the Shenandoah Valley for nearly a year,
fought in the Second Battle of Bull Run, forced the surrender of 12,000 Union
soldiers at Harper’s Ferry, and marched to Antietam the next day to join in the
His wife described him as a quiet, solitary,
closed-mouth individual. “He was a character apart; a man of mystery; silent
and uncommunicative.” He asked no advice, “forming his own plans, which those
nearest to him could not penetrate and hardly dared to conjecture, and which were
disclosed only to his military family only when he gave his orders for the
march and battle.”
D. H. Hill said Stonewall “Jackson’s genius never shone
out when under the command of another.” That was true. Jackson let Lee down
twice during the Seven Days Battles. First, when he arrived a day late for the
battle of Mechanicsville (or Beaver Dam Creek) and again at Glendale (or
Frayser’s Farm) when he sat the fight out.
What everyone did agree on was that Jackson was quick.
Super quick. The Chicago Daily Tribune suggested that “with his swift
movements from field to field, Stonewall Jackson’s sobriquet should be changed
to Stonewall ‘Portable Fence’ Jackson.”