General Baggage

When I think of the Union commander General Ulysses S. Grant I think of a dashing leader charging with his mighty steed Cincinnati, leading his troops into battle on a southern field, chasing the "Rebs." But in reality he commanded, as most Generals do, from the rear overlooking the battlefield. I suppose a General would need to bring a few things along with them to command a major army.

Apparently General Grant came with a lot of baggage. The wagon you see in the Matthew Brady photo is U.S. Grants own personal wagon for all the things the General might need on a field of battle. 

General Grants baggage wagon
Matthew Brady - US National Achives
But what would a a General of the mid 1800's on a battlefield need? Maybe he needed replacement sabres in case his broke in combat? Maybe he needed few new firearms and ammunition? 

Perhaps he needed a few changes of uniforms? But wait, he wasn't famous for wearing flourishing dress unions. In fact he wore his unadorned battlefield uniform to the surrender at Appomattox.

What about personal items? Grant had a full beard and didn't need to shave. I suppose he didn't really need much in the way of toiletries.

Perhaps this wagon was for those big cigars for which he was so famously known to have smoked!

Pack your bags, throw them in the back of the General's wagon, you're on your way to Sepia Saturday if you click here.


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