Wednesday, March 14, 2007

It's Civil War trivia time...

Ever wonder what the Civil War generals who actually survived the war went on to do?

(As opposed to the ones who didn't.)

That's Gen. Lew Wallace.

Wallace wasn't exactly noted for his skill. In fact, fairly or not, he was handed much of the blame for the butchery at the battle of Shiloh.

But if Wallace found little success in the Civil War, he found plenty afterward.

Some of you might remember the character of Gov. Lew Wallace from the movie "Young Guns II."

Yes, it's the very same Lew Wallace.

(Well, the picture is Scott Wilson, the actor who played him.)

Wallace was governor of New Mexico from 1878 to 1881, and found himself involved in the affairs of "Billy the Kid"after the Lincoln County War.

But "Young Guns II" wasn't the most famous movie that Lew Wallace was involved in.

You see, Lew Wallace was also an author after the war, and he wrote a little book in 1880 that got made into a movie nearly 80 years later.

And even though that book was a huge best-seller in the 19th century, it may not be as well remembered as literature today, and you may not have even heard of the author.

But you've definitely heard of the movie:


Let's close with a couple of old-school links:
Lew Wallace, Wikipedia-style
And Charlton Heston, Ben-Hur himself

Oh, and out of curiosity, if you knew the name of the author of "Ben-Hur," did you know he was a Civil War general? I have the nagging feeling I went about the trivia angle backwards...