In June 1861, Nathan Bedford Forrest enlisted in the Confederate Army and became one of the few soldiers during the war to enlist as a private and be promoted to general without any prior military training. An expert cavalry leader, Forrest was given command of a corps and established new doctrines for mobile forces, earning the nickname 'The Wizard of the Saddle'. His methods influenced future generations of military strategists, although the Confederate high command is seen by some commentators to have underappreciated his talents
Known for his maxim 'get there first with the most men,' Forrest was relentless in harassing Union forces during the Vicksburg Campaign in 1862 and 1863, and conducted successful raiding operations on federal supplies and communication lines throughout the war.
After the war Forrest worked as a planter and railroad president, and continued to help defend his beloved South from her enemies.
He died in 1877 at the age of 56.
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