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Comparing And Contrasting Ulysses S. Grant And Robert E. Lee Two Icons In American History

781 words - 3 pages

No matter how much something can differ some characteristics are shared. As strange as it sounds it’s very true, both Grant and Lee are two different yet similar people. As these two fights for what they believe in, though their beliefs are different they share some qualities. Ulysses S. Grant wanted the nation to expand and look forward towards the future. Robert E. Lee thought that an old aristocratic way of life was the better choice and that it can survive and dominant in American life.
Ulysses S. Grant was a man who grew up the hard way. He was the son of a tanner on the Western frontier. He was a man that looked mainly towards the future and could careless about the past. Grant view everything as one, he wanted to unify the nation. He believed that only way he can flourish was if his community can also prosper. To Grant his community was all of America from coast to coast. Catton clearly states, Grant wanted expansion and not contraction with the nation: “The Westerner who developed a farm, opened a shop, or set up a business as a trader, could hope to prosper only as his own community prospered- and his community ran from the Atlantic to the Pacific and from Canada down to Mexico” (411).
Robert E. Lee was a man of family, culture and tradition. Lee was a man who believed in the old English ways in chivalry. The Southern states fought for the same ideals that Lee stood for. Lee believed that this way of life made men to be of a higher class. He was convinced that these old values can build a better nation. Catton express the Confederacy loyalty to these values by saying: “For four years, the southern states had fought a separate war to up held the ideals for which Lee; as if he himself was the Confederacy… the best thing that the way of life for which the Confederacy stood could have ever had to offer” (410).
Grant and Lee are completely different when it comes to their views on what the American life style should be. Grants goals and standard are high, as the...

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