The founder of the Mises Institute, Ron Paul’s former congressional chief of staff and one of the leading libertarians of our time, Lew Rockwell, had some interesting posts today on the subject of facial hair during Lincoln’s War Against the South. The posts and links have been reproduced below.
Lew Rockwell wrote in a piece titled ‘Killer Generals‘:
I hate to criticize any man’s facial hair, but don’t these Lincolnite commanders especially look like refugees from a funny farm? A chilling bunch. (Thanks to Floy Lilley)
I was once told that Ludwell Johnson, who taught the “Civil War” course at The College of William and Mary for several decades, ended the class with a pictorial “proof” of the superiority of Confederate generals over their U.S. counterparts. He supposedly presented a slide show that compared the hideously ugly mugs of all those Union Army generals like the ones in Lew’s blog, to the more handsome Confederate generals like Robert E. Lee.
Lew and Tom: Perhaps these killer-generals wanted to hide their likenesses behind so much facial hair for the same reason that burglars wear masks: so as not to be identifiable to witnesses!