The Most Important Military Leaders In US History

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List Criteria: American military leaders only. Vote based on their military leadership only, not other political achievements.

America's legendary military history is dotted with some of the greatest generals and admirals to ever put on a uniform. While there have been thousands of high-ranking U.S. Army generals and and military leaders in American history, only a few have truly changed the world with their bravery, intelligence, strategic planning ability, and the way they look wearing a uniform full of medals. Some of the best American generals are also the top military leaders in history. 


The army leaders and generals in the US Army on this list all either held the most important positions in the US military or were immortalized in the history books for their actions in war. To be a great US Army officer takes great courage and leadership. Who has had the most impact and led his men and women to historic triumphs? Leading the ranks of the army is no easy feat, but throughout army history, many great men have made a name for themselves.

Vote for who you think are the most important leaders from the United States Army, armed forces, and other military branches on this list, and vote down the ones you think might be a little overrated. And feel free to add generals and admirals who you feel were unfairly forgotten.
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    the people's #1
    Died at 67 (1732-1799) George Washington was the first President of the United States, the Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War, and one of the Founding Fathers of the United

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    Died at 63 (1807-1870) Robert Edward Lee was an American soldier best known for commanding the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia in the American Civil War from 1862 until his surrender in 1865. The son of Revolutionary

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    Died at 60 (1885-1945) George Smith Patton, Jr. was a United States Army general, who commanded the Seventh United States Army in the Mediterranean and European Theaters of World War II, but is best known for his leadership

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    Died at 63 (1822-1885) Ulysses S. Grant was the 18th President of the United States. As Commanding General, Grant worked closely with President Abraham Lincoln to lead the Union Army to victory over the Confederacy in the

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    most listed
    Died at 79 (1890-1969) Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower was the 34th President of the United States from 1953 until 1961. He was a five-star general in the United States Army during World War II and served as Supreme

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    Died at 61 (1858-1919) Led American troops, the Roughriders, up San Juan Hill for decisive victory. Was eventually awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, in 2001, for his actions.

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    Died at 81 (1885-1966) Chester William Nimitz was a fleet admiral of the United States Navy. He played a major role in the naval history of World War II as Commander in Chief, United States Pacific Fleet, for U.S. naval

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    Died at 88 (1860-1948) John J. Pershing appeared in the 1942 film For Me and My Gal.

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    Died at 79 (1880-1959) George Catlett Marshall, Jr. was an American soldier and statesman famous for his leadership roles during World War II and the Cold War. He was Chief of Staff of the United States Army, Secretary of

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    Died at 78 (1934-2012) H. Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr. was a United States Army general. While serving as Commander-in-Chief, United States Central Command, he led all coalition forces in the Persian Gulf War. Born in Trenton,

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    Died at 71 (1820-1891) William Tecumseh Sherman was an American soldier, businessman, educator and author. He served as a General in the Union Army during the American Civil War, for which he received recognition for his

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    Died at 77 (1882-1959) Fleet Admiral William Frederick Halsey Jr., GBE —known as Bill Halsey or "Bull" Halsey—was an American fleet admiral in the United States Navy. At the start of the War in the Pacific Halsey

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    Died at 78 (1767-1845) Led U.S. troops to victory over the British in the Battle of New Orleans in the War of 1812.

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    Died at 59 (1952-2011) Randy Mario Poffo, better known by his ring name "Macho Man" Randy Savage, was an American professional wrestler and color commentator best known for his time in the World Wrestling

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    Died at 84 (1880-1964) Douglas MacArthur was an American five-star general and Field Marshal of the Philippine Army. He was Chief of Staff of the United States Army during the 1930s and played a prominent role in the

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    Died at 57 (1831-1888) Philip Henry Sheridan was a career United States Army officer and a Union general in the American Civil War. His career was noted for his rapid rise to major general and his close association with

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    Died at 64 (1886-1950) Henry Harley "Hap" Arnold was an American general officer holding the grades of General of the Army and General of the Air Force. Arnold was an aviation pioneer, Chief of the Air Corps,

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    Died at 88 (1893-1981) Omar Nelson "Brad" Bradley was a United States Army field commander in North Africa and Europe during World War II, and a General of the Army. From the Normandy landings through the end of

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    Died at 44 (1742-1786) Sent by Washington to replace Gates in the South and drive Cornwallis out of South Carolina.  He was called the Fighting Quaker and had been Washinton's Quartermaster.
     

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    Died at 45 (1747-1792) Best-known naval leader for the U.S. in the Revolutionary War.

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    Died at 64 (1730-1794) Friedrich Wilhelm August Heinrich Ferdinand Steuben, also referred to as the Baron von Steuben, was a Prussian-born American military officer. He served as inspector general and Major General of the

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    Died at 80 (1837-1917) George Dewey was Admiral of the Navy, the only person in U.S. history to have attained the rank. Admiral Dewey is best known for his victory at the Battle of Manila Bay during the Spanish–American

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    Died at 80 (1786-1866) Winfield Scott was a United States Army general, and unsuccessful presidential candidate of the Whig Party in 1852. Known as "Old Fuss and Feathers" and the "Grand Old Man of the

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    Died at 69 (1801-1870) David Glasgow Farragut was a flag officer of the United States Navy during the American Civil War. He was the first rear admiral, vice admiral, and admiral in the United States Navy. He is remembered

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    Died at 66 (1784-1850) Zachary Taylor was the 12th President of the United States, serving from March 1849 until his death in July 1850. Before his presidency, Taylor was a career officer in the United States Army, rising

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    Died at 98 (1895-1993) Matthew Bunker Ridgway was a United States Army general. He held several major commands and was most famous for resurrecting the United Nations war effort during the Korean War. Several historians

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    Died at 79 (1727-1806) Horatio Lloyd Gates was a retired British soldier who served as an American general during the Revolutionary War. He took credit for the American victory in the Battles of Saratoga — a matter of

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    Died at 83 (1891-1974) Carl Andrew "Tooey" Spaatz was an American World War II general and the first Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force.

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    Died at 39 (1824-1863) Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson was a Confederate general during the American Civil War, and the best-known Confederate commander after General Robert E. Lee. His military career

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    Died at 88 (1896-1984) Mark Wayne Clark (May 1, 1896 – April 17, 1984) was an American general during World War II and the Korean War and was the youngest lieutenant general (three-star general) in the U.S. Army.

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    Died at 63 (1883-1946) General Joseph Warren Stilwell was a United States Army four-star general known for service in the China Burma India Theater during World War II. His caustic personality was reflected in the nickname

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    Died at 62 (1824-1886) Winfield Scott Hancock was a career U.S. Army officer and the Democratic nominee for President of the United States in 1880. He served with distinction in the Army for four decades, including service

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    Died at 84 (1906-1990) Curtis Emerson LeMay was a general in the United States Air Force and the vice presidential running mate of American Independent Party presidential candidate George Wallace in 1968. Curtis LeMay is

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    Died at 91 (1914-2005) William Childs Westmoreland was a United States Army four-star general. General Westmoreland was in command of all US military operations in the Vietnam War from 1964 to 1968, including during the

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    Died at 34 (1785-1819) United States Navy Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry was an American naval commander, born in South Kingstown, Rhode Island. He was the son of USN Captain Christopher Raymond Perry and Sarah Wallace

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    age 78 Colin Luther Powell is an American statesman and a retired four-star general in the United States Army. He was the 65th United States Secretary of State, serving under U.S. President George W. Bush

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    Alexander Vandegrift is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Most Important Military Leaders In US History


    Alexander Vandegrift Died at 86 (1887-1973) General Alexander Archer Vandegrift, USMC was a General in the United States Marine Corps. He commanded the 1st Marine Division to victory in its first ground offensive of World War II, the Battle of

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    Died at 68 (1773-1841) William Henry Harrison was the ninth President of the United States, an American military officer and politician, and the last President born as a British subject. He was also the first president to

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    Died at 60 (1914-1974) Creighton Williams Abrams, Jr. was a United States Army general who commanded military operations in the Vietnam War from 1968–72. He served as Chief of Staff of the United States Army from 1972 until

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    Died at 78 (1878-1956) Fleet Admiral Ernest Joseph King was Commander in Chief, United States Fleet and Chief of Naval Operations during World War II. As COMINCH-CNO, he directed the United States Navy's operations,

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    John William Vessey, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Most Important Military Leaders In US History


    John William Vessey, Jr. age 93 John William Vessey, Jr. is a retired United States Army general. He served as the tenth Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from June 18, 1982 to September 30, 1985. When he retired in 1985 at the

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    Died at 53 (1940-1993) Frank Vincent Zappa was an American musician, bandleader, songwriter, composer, recording engineer, record producer, and film director. In a career spanning more than 30 years, Zappa composed rock,

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    new! & added by Jesus666

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    Courtney Hodges is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Most Important Military Leaders In US History


    Courtney Hodges Died at 79 (1887-1966) General Courtney Hicks Hodges was an American military officer, most prominent for his role in World War II, in which he commanded the First United States Army in Northwest Europe. In his career

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    Died at 86 (1901-1987) General Maxwell Davenport "Max" Taylor was a United States Army four star general and diplomat of the mid-20th century, who served as the fifth Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff after

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    Died at 57 (1758-1815) Charles Lee was an American lawyer from Virginia. He served as United States Attorney General from 1795 until 1801 and Secretary of State ad interim from May 13, 1800 to June 5, 1800. Charles was born

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    age 71 Wesley Kanne Clark, Sr. is a retired General of the United States Army. He graduated as valedictorian of the class of 1966 at West Point and was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship to the University of

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    Died at 91 (1896-1987) Joseph "Lightning Joe" Lawton Collins was Army Chief of Staff during the Korean War. During World War II, he was an Army general, serving in both the Pacific and European Theaters of

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    George Custer

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    North, a real hero! is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Most Important Military Leaders In US History

    added by LewisJones
    North, a real hero!

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