Tag: Growth of a Nation

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson - The Sage of Concord

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) WHO HE WAS: Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American essayist, lecturer, philosopher, and poet who led the transcendentalist movement of the mid-19th century. He was seen as a champion of individualism and a prescient critic of the countervailing pressures of society. Emerson disseminated his thoughts through dozens of published essays and

Winfield Scott

Winfield Scott - A Stalwart of American Military History

Winfield Scott (1786-1866) WHO HE WAS: Winfield Scott was a senior United States Army officer, diplomat, and presidential candidate known for his military service in the War of 1812, the Mexican-American War, and the early stages of the American Civil War. His nickname, “Old Fuss and Feathers,” underscored his penchant for military pomp and strict

Stephen Watts Kearny

Stephen Watts Kearny - A Figure of American Manifest Destiny

Stephen Watts Kearny (1794-1848) WHO HE WAS: Stephen Watts Kearny was a U.S. Army officer, notable for his roles in the Mexican-American War, particularly his conquest of California. He served with distinction throughout his military career, earning the nickname “Father of the West” for his significant contributions to the expansion of the United States. WHAT

Robert E. Lee

Robert E. Lee: A Paradoxical Figure in American History

Robert E. Lee (1807-1870) WHO HE WAS: Robert E. Lee was an American Confederate general best known for commanding the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia in the American Civil War from 1862 until his surrender in 1865. A top graduate of West Point, Lee’s military tactics are still studied, and he remains a controversial figure

Ulysses S. Grant

Ulysses S. Grant: A Commanding Presence in American History

Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885) WHO HE WAS: Ulysses S. Grant was the 18th President of the United States and a commanding general during the Civil War, leading the Union Army to victory over the Confederacy. His presidency was marked by efforts to reconstruct the post-war South and enforce civil rights for freed slaves, though his

Sam Houston

Sam Houston: Architect of Texas Independence

Sam Houston (1793-1863) WHO HE WAS: Sam Houston was an American soldier and politician, renowned for his pivotal role in securing Texas’s independence from Mexico. He served as the first and third President of the Republic of Texas, was a U.S. Senator after Texas’s annexation, and became the governor of two different states: Tennessee and

William Travis

William Barret Travis: The Alamo's Defiant Commander

William Travis (1809-1836) WHO HE WAS: William Barret Travis was a 19th-century American lawyer and soldier. At the age of 26, he commanded the Texan forces at the Battle of the Alamo during the Texas Revolution, where he perished alongside his men. His leadership and the letter pleading for reinforcements have become symbols of valor

Antonio López de Santa Anna

Antonio López de Santa Anna: The Enigmatic Leader of Mexico

Antonio López de Santa Anna (1794-1876) WHO HE WAS: Antonio López de Santa Anna, often known simply as Santa Anna, was a Mexican politician and general. He served multiple terms as the President of Mexico and is a controversial figure, known for his political opportunism, shifting allegiances, and his pivotal role in the Texas Revolution,

Stephen Austin

Stephen F. Austin, The Visionary 'Father of Texas

Stephen Austin (1793-1836) WHO HE WAS: Stephen Fuller Austin, known as the “Father of Texas,” was an American empresario. Recognized for his efforts in leading the second and ultimately successful colonization of the region by bringing 300 families from the United States to the region in 1825, Austin played a crucial role in the early

Sam Brannan

Sam Brannan, The Entrepreneur Who Cried Gold

Sam Brennan (1819-1889) WHO HE WAS: Sam Brannan was an American settler, businessman, and journalist, who became California’s first millionaire. His role in publicizing the California Gold Rush transformed the region’s history, and he was instrumental in the development of the city of San Francisco. WHAT HE SAID: “Gold! Gold from the American River!” WHY