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Old 03-18-2018, 09:53 PM   #126
Mason Malmuth
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Originally Posted by Lapidator View Post
I think we can promote some dark horses here for acts that are under appreciated...

King John signed the Magna Carta.

President Washington refused being made King and further gave up the presidency after only two terms.

Constantine saved Christianity.

Martin Luther displayed the ultimate Speak Truth to Power.

Plato not only is largely responsible for what we know of Socrates, but made his own contributions to humanity.
Hi Lapidator:

Following up on this, US Grant saved the United States and his actions also meant that slavery would be ended throughout the world.

Best wishes,
Mason
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Old 03-19-2018, 11:27 AM   #127
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Following up on this, US Grant saved the United States and his actions also meant that slavery would be ended throughout the world.
I still think that my previous rule about the Great Generals stands.

Grant didn't do anything that other generals of his peer group couldn't have done w/r/t winning the US Civil War.

I think he rates in the top 10 of US Presidents, though I doubt he would be picked as "Most Influential" US President.

As for, "... his actions also meant that slavery would be ended throughout the world". No, I don't think that's even close to being true. Even so far as it is, I don't think Grant could be considered a principal player w/r/t slavery in other parts of the globe.
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Old 03-19-2018, 02:15 PM   #128
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

Not to mention that slavery still exists in some parts of the world.
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Old 03-19-2018, 06:27 PM   #129
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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I still think that my previous rule about the Great Generals stands.

Grant didn't do anything that other generals of his peer group couldn't have done w/r/t winning the US Civil War.

I think he rates in the top 10 of US Presidents, though I doubt he would be picked as "Most Influential" US President.

As for, "... his actions also meant that slavery would be ended throughout the world". No, I don't think that's even close to being true. Even so far as it is, I don't think Grant could be considered a principal player w/r/t slavery in other parts of the globe.
Hi Lapidator:

The North had become very war weary and had a bunch of generals defeated. If the unknown Grant didnít show up thereís a good chance, in my opinion, that the Confederacy becomes a country. Then slavery is with us for a much longer time and that includes the world. I donít see anyway around this.

Best wishes,
Mason
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Old 03-19-2018, 06:30 PM   #130
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Not to mention that slavery still exists in some parts of the world.
Hi Kurt:

While your statement is certainly true, itís not part of any governmentís official policy. Of course, knowing this wonít help someone in a North Korea prison camp.

Best wishes,
Mason
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Old 03-19-2018, 07:08 PM   #131
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Hi Lapidator:

Following up on this, US Grant saved the United States and his actions also meant that slavery would be ended throughout the world.

Best wishes,
Mason
Why do you think that a Union victory had this influence on slavery throughout the world? The world's only superpower at the time, the British Empire, had already made slavery illegal and had actively been fighting it across the globe including (indirectly) in the US. This was going to continue no matter how the civil war ended.
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Old 03-19-2018, 07:58 PM   #132
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Originally Posted by Mason Malmuth View Post
Hi Lapidator:

The North had become very war weary and had a bunch of generals defeated. If the unknown Grant didnít show up thereís a good chance, in my opinion, that the Confederacy becomes a country. Then slavery is with us for a much longer time and that includes the world. I donít see anyway around this.

Best wishes,
Mason

No, I disagree.

The north was war weary, but that's not the same as saying that armistice was going to break out.

Lincoln wins the 1864 election solidly against McClellan, who was for continuing the war even though the Democrat Party was for peace.

Sherman (under Grant's orders) broke the Confederacy with his March to the Sea in 1864. By then, the Confederacy was literally running out of men (and Generals -- they never really found a replacement for Stonewall). Sherman's forces were never in any real danger of rout or capture after the summer of 1864.

What was Grant's genius of strategy or tactics that couldn't have been applied by his peers? Giving official permission for Sherman to effect a scorched earth strategy? I think by the middle of 1864, many of the Union generals would have allowed it.
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Old 03-19-2018, 08:02 PM   #133
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

I don't think the Ottoman Empire cared much to change their views on slavery based on the events taking place in what was an infant of a nation with a tiny GDP half the world away in 1865.

Mason, I suggest you take a non-US centric view of the globe for virtually all events before about 1890.
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Old 03-20-2018, 12:33 AM   #134
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Why do you think that a Union victory had this influence on slavery throughout the world? The world's only superpower at the time, the British Empire, had already made slavery illegal and had actively been fighting it across the globe including (indirectly) in the US. This was going to continue no matter how the civil war ended.
Hi Louis:

The United States, year 1860, was the major slave holder in the Western World. In addition, it was an emerging economic super power. The British empire, on the other hand, even though they had become strong foes of slavery by this time (and many years earlier), they were never a big slave holder relative to the size of their empire. Thus if the Confederacy survives as a viable country, (or gets reincorporated back into the US with slavery still being the way of the Southern States), the pro-slavery world continues, and both England and France, as well as the Northern United States, will do business with it.

Best wishes,
Mason
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Old 03-20-2018, 12:56 AM   #135
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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No, I disagree.

The north was war weary, but that's not the same as saying that armistice was going to break out.

Lincoln wins the 1864 election solidly against McClellan, who was for continuing the war even though the Democrat Party was for peace.

Sherman (under Grant's orders) broke the Confederacy with his March to the Sea in 1864. By then, the Confederacy was literally running out of men (and Generals -- they never really found a replacement for Stonewall). Sherman's forces were never in any real danger of rout or capture after the summer of 1864.

What was Grant's genius of strategy or tactics that couldn't have been applied by his peers? Giving official permission for Sherman to effect a scorched earth strategy? I think by the middle of 1864, many of the Union generals would have allowed it.
Hi Lapidor:

I disagree. To see this, you need to understand how the South lost the war.

First off, the number of Northern Generals who were completely defeated in battle is truly amazing. With the exception of Gettysburg, and perhaps Pea Ridge as well as Westport, both much smaller battles in the West (but still important) where Northern General Samuel Curtis proved victorious, what battles of any significance did a Northern General win. Yes, Antietam was a strategic victory for McClellan but a tactical draw, and the same can be said for Rosecrans at Murfreesboro (and he was soundly defeated at Chickamauga).

But a strange thing happened. Out of virtually nowhere, an unknown General Grant appeared and the South lost the West. Then Grant sent his top lieutenant General Sherman on to Atlanta and he took on the task of defeating Lee in Northern Virginia.

So what happens if Grant doesn't show up? My guess is that Vicksburg doesn't fall and there will be complete stalemate in the West to go along with the stalemate in the East, and who knows how many more generals Lincoln goes through, then Lincoln gets defeated in The Election of 1864.

You ask:

What was Grant's genius of strategy or tactics that couldn't have been applied by his peers?

I think a better question is how did Grant, someone who was considered a failure in much of his life before 1860, understand how to defeat the Confederacy when a whole bunch of other Union Generals didn't seem to have a clue?

And just off the top of my head, here's a quick list of Union Generals who were either badly defeated or proved to be worthless in other ways: Freemont, Halleck, McDowell, McClellan, Banks, Pope, Hooker, Burnside, Siegel, and Rosecrans.

Best wishes,
Mason
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:53 AM   #136
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Louis Cyphre View Post
Why do you think that a Union victory had this influence on slavery throughout the world? The world's only superpower at the time, the British Empire, had already made slavery illegal and had actively been fighting it across the globe including (indirectly) in the US. This was going to continue no matter how the civil war ended.
The British de facto supported the Confederacy. All they had to do to cripple the South and help end slavery would have been to stop buying cotton.
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Old 03-20-2018, 09:32 AM   #137
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

On the other hand they also patrolled the Atlantic for slave ships.
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Old 03-20-2018, 11:28 AM   #138
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

Hi Mason,

I'll keep my comments under the scope of trying to decide whether Grant himself qualifies as a major influence of humanity.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mason Malmuth View Post
Hi Louis:

The United States, year 1860, was the major slave holder in the Western World. In addition, it was an emerging economic super power. The British empire, on the other hand, even though they had become strong foes of slavery by this time (and many years earlier), they were never a big slave holder relative to the size of their empire. Thus if the Confederacy survives as a viable country, (or gets reincorporated back into the US with slavery still being the way of the Southern States), the pro-slavery world continues, and both England and France, as well as the Northern United States, will do business with it.

Best wishes,
Mason
US was not an "emerging economic superpower" in the middle of the 19th century. From 1860, it was going to take another 20+ years for US to merely catch up to the industrialization of western Europe. It was going to be another 40+ years before US decided it needed to become a military player on a global scale -- and this was only because US had the excuse of Spain's "meddling" in Our Hemisphere, in violation of the Monroe Doctrine. Until the Spanish-American War, US had an official isolationist policy. Hardly a case can be made that US in 1860 was on the way to being a major influence in human history. The conditions necessary for this were much later, and the result of other individuals.

US wasn't a global economic superpower at all and wouldn't become one until the Europeans nearly destroyed themselves in 1914-1917.

Its hard to see how the Confederacy "wins" the war. Asserting that they could have been welcomed back into the Union while being allowed to keep owning slaves requires forgetting all that happened between 1830-1860. Since the Confederacy never really tried to invade the North it was never going to be able to attack the North's capability to wage war. As I've already stated, pro-war Lincoln won in 1864, and that his opponent was a pro-war Democrat. The most likely alternate history (if hypothetically Grant wasn't "The Guy") is that the North continues its war of attrition against the South, and eventually compels surrender.

An alternate history here is not plausible -- and this strongly implies that Grant himself was not a major influence.

Quote:
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Hi Lapidor:

I disagree. To see this, you need to understand how the South lost the war.

First off, the number of Northern Generals who were completely defeated in battle is truly amazing. With the exception of Gettysburg, and perhaps Pea Ridge as well as Westport, both much smaller battles in the West (but still important) where Northern General Samuel Curtis proved victorious, what battles of any significance did a Northern General win. Yes, Antietam was a strategic victory for McClellan but a tactical draw, and the same can be said for Rosecrans at Murfreesboro (and he was soundly defeated at Chickamauga).

But a strange thing happened. Out of virtually nowhere, an unknown General Grant appeared and the South lost the West. Then Grant sent his top lieutenant General Sherman on to Atlanta and he took on the task of defeating Lee in Northern Virginia.

So what happens if Grant doesn't show up? My guess is that Vicksburg doesn't fall and there will be complete stalemate in the West to go along with the stalemate in the East, and who knows how many more generals Lincoln goes through, then Lincoln gets defeated in The Election of 1864.

You ask:

What was Grant's genius of strategy or tactics that couldn't have been applied by his peers?

I think a better question is how did Grant, someone who was considered a failure in much of his life before 1860, understand how to defeat the Confederacy when a whole bunch of other Union Generals didn't seem to have a clue?

And just off the top of my head, here's a quick list of Union Generals who were either badly defeated or proved to be worthless in other ways: Freemont, Halleck, McDowell, McClellan, Banks, Pope, Hooker, Burnside, Siegel, and Rosecrans.

Best wishes,
Mason
It matters not the list of failed Generals. The Union would keep running through the list of generals, promoting officers as needed. The lost items is always found in the last place you look.

Your better question is identical to mine. To wit:

What did Grant do that the other Union Generals did not, or could not do?

What precisely were the strategies or tactics that Grant applied that were considered innovative, revolutionary, ingenious in comparison to his peers?
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Old 03-20-2018, 11:42 AM   #139
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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So what happens if Grant doesn't show up? My guess is that Vicksburg doesn't fall and there will be complete stalemate in the West to go along with the stalemate in the East, and who knows how many more generals Lincoln goes through, then Lincoln gets defeated in The Election of 1864.
1) Sherman shows up.

2) In 1864, Pro-war Lincoln maybe loses (I doubt it tho, Electoral College FTW! ) to Pro-war McClellan.

3) The South eventually still loses as they literally run out of men.

4) We argue whether Sherman should be one of the most influential humans.

Last edited by Lapidator; 03-20-2018 at 11:47 AM.
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Old 03-20-2018, 02:12 PM   #140
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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On the other hand they also patrolled the Atlantic for slave ships.
Playing both sides, but the economic pressure would've crippled the South and led to the end of slavery far more quickly than interdicting an occasional slave ship.

Politics at its finest. They could pound their anti-slavery chests in public while financially enabling the slavers.
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Old 03-20-2018, 02:43 PM   #141
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Playing both sides, but the economic pressure would've crippled the South and led to the end of slavery far more quickly than interdicting an occasional slave ship.

Politics at its finest. They could pound their anti-slavery chests in public while financially enabling the slavers.
Chests covered in Confederate cotton.
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:25 PM   #142
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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The British de facto supported the Confederacy. All they had to do to cripple the South and help end slavery would have been to stop buying cotton.
Hi Kurn:

I don't think this is accurate. At the beginning of the war, the South stopped cotton sales to France and England in an attempt to gain their support immediately. Later in the war, when they wanted to sell cotton to France and England, the Union blockade had become fairly effective.

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Old 03-20-2018, 07:37 PM   #143
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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On the other hand they also patrolled the Atlantic for slave ships.
The slave trade from Africa was stopped in the early 1800s. I forget the date but this is part of the US Constitution.

However, this argument is certainly a good one. The North built the ships that carried the cotton, most of the shipping companies were in the North, as well as the required insurance came from Northern companies, and so on.

Best wishes,
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:51 PM   #144
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Hi Mason,

I'll keep my comments under the scope of trying to decide whether Grant himself qualifies as a major influence of humanity.



US was not an "emerging economic superpower" in the middle of the 19th century. From 1860, it was going to take another 20+ years for US to merely catch up to the industrialization of western Europe. It was going to be another 40+ years before US decided it needed to become a military player on a global scale -- and this was only because US had the excuse of Spain's "meddling" in Our Hemisphere, in violation of the Monroe Doctrine. Until the Spanish-American War, US had an official isolationist policy. Hardly a case can be made that US in 1860 was on the way to being a major influence in human history. The conditions necessary for this were much later, and the result of other individuals.

US wasn't a global economic superpower at all and wouldn't become one until the Europeans nearly destroyed themselves in 1914-1917.

Its hard to see how the Confederacy "wins" the war. Asserting that they could have been welcomed back into the Union while being allowed to keep owning slaves requires forgetting all that happened between 1830-1860. Since the Confederacy never really tried to invade the North it was never going to be able to attack the North's capability to wage war. As I've already stated, pro-war Lincoln won in 1864, and that his opponent was a pro-war Democrat. The most likely alternate history (if hypothetically Grant wasn't "The Guy") is that the North continues its war of attrition against the South, and eventually compels surrender.

An alternate history here is not plausible -- and this strongly implies that Grant himself was not a major influence.



It matters not the list of failed Generals. The Union would keep running through the list of generals, promoting officers as needed. The lost items is always found in the last place you look.

Your better question is identical to mine. To wit:

What did Grant do that the other Union Generals did not, or could not do?

What precisely were the strategies or tactics that Grant applied that were considered innovative, revolutionary, ingenious in comparison to his peers?
Hi Lapidator:

Standard Civil War doctrine is that the North had so many advantages in man power, material, general economics, and lots of other things, that they were going to win this war no matter what. But I disagree.

There's a theory that I subscribe to which you hardly ever see mentioned, and it's the idea that there was a big difference between Democratic generals and Republican generals. The Democrats wanted to fight a more gentlemanly war. Their attitude was that the armies should come together every so often, a battle be fought, and the side with the most casualties would then retreat.

The Republican generals were much different. They believed in relentless pressure, were willing to absorb much more in the way of casualties, wanted to use every means possible to defeat the enemy, and were even willing to advance after a battle was clearly lost (Grant after the Battle of the Wilderness).

Now let's go to General McClellan. He was clearly a democratic general and even though he may have wanted to continue the war, it's doubtful if the number of casualties that both Grant and Lincoln were willing to absorb would have been tolerated. Thus I see him relieving Grant and vetoing Sherman's march through Georgia, and a war that just goes on until a peace agreement is reached.

Best wishes,
Mason
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:55 PM   #145
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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1) Sherman shows up.

2) In 1864, Pro-war Lincoln maybe loses (I doubt it tho, Electoral College FTW! ) to Pro-war McClellan.

3) The South eventually still loses as they literally run out of men.

4) We argue whether Sherman should be one of the most influential humans.
I don't think Sherman shows up. At the beginning of the war he essentially had a nervous breakdown and left the Army for a short period of time. While he probably would have come back whether Grant existed or not, it was only Grant who had complete confidence in him. Thus in my opinion he would have been a minor player and not given the chance to do what he did.

Also, early in the war, Sherman accurately predicted the scope and size of the war as well as a huge number of casualties. This is not something the Democratic generals would have wanted to hear.

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Mason
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Old 03-20-2018, 08:05 PM   #146
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Originally Posted by Mason Malmuth View Post
The slave trade from Africa was stopped in the early 1800s. I forget the date but this is part of the US Constitution.

However, this argument is certainly a good one. The North built the ships that carried the cotton, most of the shipping companies were in the North, as well as the required insurance came from Northern companies, and so on.

Best wishes,
Mason
You keep talking about the US while the thread is about world history. The US wasn't the only nation buying slaves from Africa.
Also, the slave trade was outlawed which isn't the same as stopped.

See:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United...v._The_Amistad
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Old 03-20-2018, 11:02 PM   #147
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

Hi Mason,

I don't see how any of this makes your case for Grant being named among the most influential humans.

I think the current discussion, US Civil War, is a derail and probably should be continued in it's own thread.
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Old 03-21-2018, 02:51 AM   #148
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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You keep talking about the US while the thread is about world history. The US wasn't the only nation buying slaves from Africa.
Also, the slave trade was outlawed which isn't the same as stopped.

See:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United...v._The_Amistad
Hi Louis:

I didn't say that slavery was stopped. For that to happen, it took the lives of 400,000 Union soldiers. But once this was done, the rest of the Western World, where slavery was still legal followed with Brazil being the last country to end slavery in 1888.

My point is that the ending of slavery throughout the Western World is a very important event in history, and I also claim that this would not have happened at the time it did if US Grant didn't somehow show up in the US Civil War. Thus, even though Grant was not an anti-slavery abolitionist, he turns out to be the main reason that slavery was ended, more important than Lincoln, perhaps by accident. But it changed the world for the better and thus in my opinion Grant deserves to be on this list.

Best wishes,
Mason
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Old 03-21-2018, 03:03 AM   #149
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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Hi Mason,

I don't see how any of this makes your case for Grant being named among the most influential humans.

I think the current discussion, US Civil War, is a derail and probably should be continued in it's own thread.
Hi Lapidator:

A discussion of the US Civil War is certainly a derail. A discussion of why slavery ended at the time it did (in the Western World) is not a derail. However, there's a high correlation between the ending of slavery and the US Civil War which brings us back to Grant.

Best wishes,
Mason
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Old 03-21-2018, 06:34 AM   #150
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Re: The most influential humans in world history?

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The British de facto supported the Confederacy. All they had to do to cripple the South and help end slavery would have been to stop buying cotton.
This is what happened when Lancashire textile workers refused to spin cotton picked by slave hands.


During the American Civil War the supply of cotton to the Lancashire mills was disrupted. This led to mass sackings, short time working and wage cuts for thousands of textile workers. In 1862 as people got hungrier they began to ask questions about the cause Ė the war thousands of miles away in America.

After much debate and discussion workers were won to take the side of President Abraham Lincoln and the Union Army fighting against the Southern Confederation of Slave States.

On New Years Eve 1862 at a meeting at the Free Trades Hall in Manchester six thousands workers declared their support for president Abraham Lincoln and the proclamation he had signed that freed the slaves during the American Civil War.

Source : The Cotton Famine - Mark Krantz
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