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Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 24. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), chapter 1.54 (search)
ns he bore a conspicuous part for his cause in shaping military events. At the outbreak of the war, Buckner, then about thirty-eight years old, at the very zenith of his powers, was undoubtedly the most influential Southern rights man in his native State of Kentucky, by reason of his military education and experience, his wealth and high social connections. He had graduated front West Point in 1844, number eleven in a class of twenty-five cadets. Besides Generals Hancock, Pleasanton and Frost, his classmates, Buckner had, as associates in the academy, in the classes above and below him, many lads who afterwards distinguished themselves on both sides—U. S. Grant, McClellan, Kirby Smith, Jackson, Pickett, Wilcox, Franklin, Porter, Baldy Smith, Steele, Rufus Ingalls, and others of lesser note. Grant and Buckner were together three years at West Point, Grant having graduated in the class of 1843. Buckner took part in the Mexican war as Second Lieutenant in the 6th regular infantr