Can You Name the Military Leader by Their Nickname?
By: John Miller
About This Quiz
In the fog of war, some men make themselves crystal clear – they either become icons of the age or they become objects of lasting derision. From the American Revolution to the Civil War, or the World Wars, heroes and goats fill the history books, and their men give them appropriate nicknames that often serve as reminders of their glory … or their failures. In this quiz, can you match these nicknames to the correct military leaders?
We know you’ve seen many of these nicknames before. “Old Hickory” and “Old Blood and Guts” were two of America's most famous generals, and they were alike in many, many ways. But do you really know which man was which?
In the Second World War, Lt. Gen. James Gavin became known as "Jumpin' Jim.” That’s because he was one of the pioneers of airborne attack methods, creating some of the tactics that the Allies used to airlift men into Normandy and beyond.
Germany had heroes, too. In WWII, Capt. Michael "Black Baron" Wittmann was feared as one of the best tank commanders of the entire war, as he destroyed 138 enemy tanks.
There are many other famous men in conflicts the world over. Let's see if you know the nicknames of these titans of war!
Who was "Little Corporal"?
Qin Shi Huang
He wasn't little -- Napoleon was 5'7" -- and the nickname wasn't demeaning. He was the "Little Corporal," a nickname the French general and emperor earned for the way he endeared himself to his men.
As one of the European Theater's most decisive generals, George Patton wasted no time in pursuing the Axis. "Old Blood and Guts" lost a lot of men, but he feared that indecisiveness or fear would cost him even more.
John "Black Jack" Pershing is still one of America's most famous military leaders, one who led the U.S. in World War I. He held his men in American units instead of dispersing with French and English forces, a strategy that paid huge dividends in the long run.
Robert E. Lee called Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson one of his most competent subordinates in the Civil War. And when Jackson was shot by his own men, he lost an arm and then died a week later, partly due to pneumonia.
In the Second Seminole War (1832-1845), Zachary Taylor earned great respect in the U.S. Army. He was "Old Rough and Ready," always prepared to take on the enemy. He later became the 12th U.S. president.
When Robert E. Lee needed a Civil War win, he leaned on his "Old War Horse," James Longstreet. Longstreet won several important Confederate victories but ultimately couldn't help the South turn the war's tide.
In the Pacific Theater of WWII, Joseph "Vinegar Joe" Stillwell drew one of the toughest assignments of the entire war. He was sour as vinegar to work with (thus the nickname) but he kept on in the face of extreme adversity.
In World War II, Henry "Hap" Arnold was a celebrity of the U.S. Army, a five-star general. When the Air Force split from the army, he became a five-star general there, too -- the only man ever to be a five-star general in two branches of the U.S. military.
During WWII, a damaged ship meant he could only lead his men at 31 knots … and Arleigh Burke became known as "31-Knot Burke." Originally a demeaning nickname, it eventually became a hallmark of his persistence and courage in the face of challenges.