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Quiz about Best of the Best  US Generals
Quiz about Best of the Best  US Generals

Best of the Best: U.S. Generals Quiz

Many people throughout history have been given nicknames; while some are not especially complimentary, the origin is always interesting. Let's see if you can correctly match the U.S. generals with their respective nicknames.

A matching quiz by ponycargirl. Estimated time: 3 mins.
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3 mins
Match Quiz
Quiz #
Dec 03 21
# Qns
Avg Score
8 / 10
Top 5% quiz!
Last 3 plays: ncterp (8/10), turaguy (8/10), toddruby96 (4/10).
(a) Drag-and-drop from the right to the left, or (b) click on a right side answer box and then on a left side box to move it.
1. Bad Old Man  
  John J. Pershing
2. The Bear   
  Henry Lee III
3. Black Jack  
  Robert E. Lee
4. Swamp Fox  
  George McClellan
5. Old Blood and Guts  
  Francis Marion
6. The Marble Model  
  George Patton
7. The G.I.'s General  
  Norman Schwartzkopf
8. Young Napoleon  
  Dwight Eisenhower
9. Ike  
  Jubal Early
10. Light-Horse Harry  
  Omar Bradley

Select each answer

1. Bad Old Man
2. The Bear
3. Black Jack
4. Swamp Fox
5. Old Blood and Guts
6. The Marble Model
7. The G.I.'s General
8. Young Napoleon
9. Ike
10. Light-Horse Harry

Most Recent Scores
May 20 2024 : ncterp: 8/10
May 19 2024 : turaguy: 8/10
May 16 2024 : toddruby96: 4/10
Apr 30 2024 : Guest 172: 6/10
Apr 25 2024 : crossesq: 8/10
Apr 19 2024 : polly656: 8/10
Apr 10 2024 : Guest 207: 7/10

Score Distribution

Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. Bad Old Man

Answer: Jubal Early

Jubal Early served in the Eastern Theater as a Confederate general during the American Civil War. Early in the war he was a division commander under Stonewall Jackson, but later he commanded a corps, and was the principal commander during the Valley Campaigns in 1864. Early was against the idea of his home state of Virginia seceding from the Union, and did everything he could to promote compromise.

When it became clear that secession was inevitable, he joined the Virginia militia. The origin of his nickname? Known for his stubbornness, aggressiveness, and premature aging due to arthritis, Jubal Early was called "my bad old man" by Robert E. Lee.
2. The Bear

Answer: Norman Schwartzkopf

After attending West Point, Schwartzkopf served in Vietnam as an advisor to the South Vietnamese Army and a battalion commander; as a result, he received numerous awards, including three Purple Hearts and a Legion of Merit. Before his well-known leadership during the Persian Gulf War, he also was one of the commanders during the invasion of Grenada.

While some may say that a better-known nickname was "Stormin' Norman," that was a nickname that he did not like; "Bear", however, was acceptable as he called his wife "Mrs. Bear", named one of his dogs "Bear", and, after retirement, became a spokesmen for grizzly bear conservation.

The origin of his nickname? His men called him "Bear", which was a reference to his size - he was 6'4" tall and weighed approximately 240 pounds.
3. Black Jack

Answer: John J. Pershing

After graduating from West Point, Pershing served in the U.S. military on several occasions - in Indian campaigns, the Spanish-American War, and the Pancho Villa Expedition. It was during World War I, however, that Pershing was named commander of American Expeditionary Forces by President Woodrow Wilson in 1917. Pershing was promoted to General of the Armies of the United States in 1919, was was the highest-ranking officer in U.S. history until President Gerald Ford promoted George Washington to the same rank with the stipulation that he would have "rank and precedence over all other grades of the Army, past or present", in 1976 during the U.S. Bicentennial. So what about the origin of the nickname? After his participation in the Indian campaigns, Pershing was appointed to the staff at West Point.

He was tough and strict and very unpopular with the students, who gave him the nickname because of his service with the 10th Cavalry Regiment, an African-American unit and one of the original Buffalo Soldier units.

By the way, why is it that the strict and rigid are typically unpopular? One of the soldiers who served under Pershing said that he hated Pershing, but that "as a soldier, the ones then and the ones now couldn't polish his (Pershing's) boots".
4. Swamp Fox

Answer: Francis Marion

After serving the British during the French and Indian War, Francis Francis Marion gained fame during the American Revolution as a guerilla leader in the southern colonies, working with both the Continental Army and the South Carolina Militia. Considered to be one of the fathers of guerilla and maneuver warfare, Marion and his men harassed the British army so much that Colonel Banastre Tarleton was given the command to either capture of kill him.

The nickname? After following Marion for twenty-six miles in the swamp, Tarleton stated that "as for this damned old fox, the Devil himself could not catch him".
5. Old Blood and Guts

Answer: George Patton

After graduating from West Point in 1909, George Patton served with the 15th Cavalry at Fort Sheridan, Illinois. Did you know that he represented the Army in the 1912 Olympics, placing fifth in the first modern pentathlon? After that he participated in the Pancho Villa Expedition and was appointed to serve under General Pershing during WWI.

It was during this time that he became interested in tanks and was appointed to establish the AEF Light Tank School. He became best known, however, for his leadership of the 3rd U.S. Army after D-Day. "Keep on advancing... whether we go over, under, or through the enemy," Patton told his troops. What about the nickname? While some sources say that Patton was given the nickname, "Old Blood and Guts", due to his passion for battle and total disregard for the lives of his men ("our blood, his guts"), others claim that his officers gave him the nickname after a statement he made to them during training, "you're going to be up to your neck in blood and guts".
6. The Marble Model

Answer: Robert E. Lee

Robert E. Lee left his mark on history during the American Civil War as the commander of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia. After graduating from West Point, he served during the Mexican-American War and was the Superintendent of the United States Military Academy at West Point. Even though he was against secession and even had an offer to serve as a senior officer in the Union Army, Lee followed his home state of Virginia. What about his nickname? Lee was called "The Marble Model" or "The Marble Man" by his classmates when he was a student at West Point, as he was a model student and did not receive one demerit during his time there. To this day many historians debate whether the nickname alludes to his handsomeness and moral character or if it might have been a reference to a cold-hearted personality.

The majority consensus? Robert E. Lee was a gentleman, even under the most difficult of circumstances.
7. The G.I.'s General

Answer: Omar Bradley

Although Omar Bradley was planning to attend the University of Missouri at Columbia and focus on law, a second place score on the West Point placement exam taken at Jefferson Barracks in St. Louis and a change of plans for the highest scorer paved the way for Bradley to attend West Point.

After graduation, Bradley served during WWI. However, he did not serve overseas. During the course of WWII he was stationed in North Africa and served during the invasion of Sicily, before being appointed as field commander of American soldiers during the D-Day invasion. What about the nickname? War correspondent Ernie Pyle gave Bradley this sobriquet because of his concern for his men; at one point during WWII, 1.3 million men were under his command. Bradley is said to have always taken the abilities, desires, and fears of his men into consideration before making a decision.
8. Young Napoleon

Answer: George McClellan

After graduating from West Point, George McClellan served in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and gained a name for himself during the Mexican War as an engineering officer and going on reconnaissance missions for Winfield Scott. Upon returning to the U.S. after the war he continued to train cadets at West Point in engineering, published a book on bayonet tactics that he had translated from French, and served as an official observer during the Crimean War. McClellan then resigned his commission and worked for railroad companies.

His war and railroad experience made him appear to be the perfect choice as commander of the Army of the Potomac after the Union defeat at the First Battle of Bull Run. When did he receive the nickname? The press dubbed McClellan "Young Napoleon" after he led a group of Ohio volunteers and celebrated some minor Union victories at the beginning of the war.

Unfortunately, McClellan was better at organizing than executing his plans. His inability to act decisively led Lincoln to say, "If General McClellan does not want to use the army, I would like to borrow it for a time."
9. Ike

Answer: Dwight Eisenhower

After his graduation from West Point, Dwight Eisenhower asked for an assignment in the Philippines; it was denied, however, as was his request to be assigned overseas when World War I broke out. Instead he was given command of a unit that trained tank crews.

The armistice ending the war was signed before Eisenhower could have a chance to prove himself; this led many European generals to discredit his ability at the beginning of WWII. Nevertheless, he became Supreme Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Forces in Europe, planning both the invasion of North Africa and the D-Day invasion.

In 1953 he became the 34th President of the United States. So what about the nickname? Interestingly, his nickname "Ike" ran in his family; sources tell that all of his five brothers were called "Ike" at one time or another as a way to shorten the family name.

He was the only one of his brothers, however, who continued with the nickname as an adult. As his military career progressed, the nickname became "General Ike".
10. Light-Horse Harry

Answer: Henry Lee III

After his graduation from the College of New Jersey (Princeton), Henry Lee III became a captain in the Virginia Light Dragoons, and was sent to join the Continental Army. Two years later, in 1778, he was given command of his own group containing both cavalry and infantry that was known as Lee's Legion. Known for his outstanding horsemanship and skill in leading guerilla warfare, Lee advanced quickly in George Washington's army.

His nickname? His men called him "Light-Horse Harry" because of the lightning fast raids that he led against British supply trains and his excellent equestrian skills. "Light-Horse Harry" served as the 9th Governor of Virginia, and was the father of Robert E. Lee.
Source: Author ponycargirl

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