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226Ulysses S. Grant and Rodney Dangerfield, "No Respect at All?"

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  • Michigan_Veterans_of_the_US_Civil_War-own
    May 9, 2010
      U.S. President and General Ulysses S. Grant could be paired with the late comedian, Rodney Dangerfield's famed line, "I get no respect at all" these days. Despite the fast approach of the 150th Anniversary of the U.S. Civil War, a Republican congressman has proposed replacing Grant's image from the $50. bill with Ronald Reagen (a strange enough concept that even over-looks Dwight Eisenhower) and now a complete omission on Grant from the History Channel follows on a segment about the U.S. Civil War.

      Strange Omission: Ulysses S. Grant missing from History Channel Civil War Segment - "America, The Story of Us"

      The History Channel has been presenting a series called "America, The Story of US" for several weeks. The series has been entertaining despite missing a few key moments of history (i.e. George Washington crossing the Deleware for the Battle of Trenton), but a recent omission has come off as outright contemptible to Civil War history. At no time during the one hour segment on the Civil War was Commanding Union General Ulysses S. Grant ever mentioned. While Confederate commander Robert E. Lee and Union General Wiliam T. Sherman (who reported to Grant) were mentioned, General Grant was never acknowledged.


      It would appear such contempt has followed Ulysses S. Grant since his death. Grant's tomb was left in absolute ruins for much of the last century and many of these latest actions follow suite towards a bizzare re-writing of history. As noted from the Ulysses S. Grant Homepage, "Historians blur the lines,'" said Robert Tignor, chairman of Princeton University's history department. ''I think we're all in the business of re-creating. That's what history is. It's a reconstruction of the past as viewed by specific individuals''.

      Unfortunately, it is difficult to reconstruct an entire omission. President Abraham Lincoln presented Ulysses S. Grant with his commission as a lieutenant general. Only George Washington had risen to that rank in the U.S. Army before him. Grant was characteristically humble and despite Lincoln's emancipation proclomation, it was Grant's shared determination that assured such freedom would prevail. Later as president, Grant signed the bill that preserved Yellow Stone National Park. A lasting testimate even if Grant is long forgotten.

      L.G. & J.D. Overmyer

      Suggested reading (with dates of initial publication):

      Catton, Bruce. Grant Moves South (1960).
      Catton, Bruce. Grant Takes Command (1969)

      Ellington, Charles G. The Trial of U.S. Grant (1987).

      Fuller, J.F.C. The Generalship of Ulysses S. Grant (1929).

      Garland, Hamlin. Ulysses S. Grant: His Life and Character (1898).

      Goldhurst, Richard. Many are the Hearts: The Agony and Triumph of Ulysses S. Grant (1975).

      Grant, Julia D. Personal Memoirs of Julia Dent Grant (1975).
      Grant, Ulysses S. Personal Memoirs of U.S. Grant (1885).
      Lewis, Lloyd. Captain Sam Grant (1950).

      Porter, Horace. Campaigning with Grant (1897).

      Scaturro, Frank J. President Grant Reconsidered (1998).

      Simpson, Brooks D. Ulysses S. Grant: Triumph over Adversity, 1822-1865 (2000).

      Smith, Jean Edward. Grant (2001).

      Young, John Russell. Around the World with General Grant (1879)