Weird History

The Most Important Military Leaders In US History

List Rules
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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  • George Washington
    1
    Dec. at 67 (1732-1799)
  • George S. Patton
    2
    Dec. at 60 (1885-1945)
  • Ulysses S. Grant
    3
    Dec. at 63 (1822-1885)
  • Chester W. Nimitz
    4
    Dec. at 80 (1885-1966)
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower
    5
    Dec. at 78 (1890-1969)
  • George Marshall
    6
    Dec. at 78 (1880-1959)
  • William Tecumseh Sherman
    7
    Dec. at 71 (1820-1891)
  • Nathanael Greene
    8
    Dec. at 43 (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.
     
  • Stonewall Jackson
    9
    Dec. at 39 (1824-1863)
  • John Paul Jones
    10
    Dec. at 45 (1747-1792)
    Best-known naval leader for the U.S. in the Revolutionary War.
  • Raymond A. Spruance
    11
    Dec. at 83 (1886-1969)
  • John J. Pershing
    12
    Dec. at 87 (1860-1948)
  • Chesty Puller
    13
    Dec. at 73 (1898-1971)
  • Robert E. Lee
    14
    Dec. at 63 (1807-1870)
  • Omar Bradley
    15
    Dec. at 88 (1893-1981)
  • Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette
    16
  • Douglas MacArthur
    17
    Dec. at 84 (1880-1964)
  • William Halsey, Jr.
    18
    Dec. at 76 (1882-1959)
  • Andrew Jackson
    19
    Dec. at 78 (1767-1845)
    Led U.S. troops to victory over the British in the Battle of New Orleans in the War of 1812.
  • James Longstreet
    20
    Dec. at 82 (1821-1904)
  • Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr.
    21
    Dec. at 78 (1934-2012)
  • Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben
    22
    Dec. at 64 (1730-1794)
  • Henry H. Arnold
    23
    Dec. at 63 (1886-1950)
  • David Farragut
    24
    Dec. at 69 (1801-1870)
  • Matthew Ridgway
    25
    Dec. at 98 (1895-1993)