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Two Great Admirals of the Civil War, A Comparison Study



      In this text to text lesson you will read about two of the Civil War's greatest commanding officers.  As you will find out, an admiral is a special military person, in that there is a lot of pride and patriotism demonstrated.  Admirals Farragut and Buchanon had long histories before the Civil War.  The Confederates had only one admiral and that was Adm. Franklin Buchanon.  Admiral Farragut sets the standard for all U.S. Navy commanders and admirals to follow. 

1.  Read the N.Y. Times articles about each and while reading think about the lives and careers of each.  The Wikipedia articles could also help in your study.  Consider these questions and any that you come up with as you read.  What made them the way they were?  How did they end up being a navy person?  Where did their knowledge and courage come from?  What did each think about their side in the War: Union and Confederate?  Were they political, or solely dedicated to the Navy they served?  What did the men serving under them think of them?  What great battles did each fight in, and did they win?  Find the "greatest" achievement for each.  Why do we remember these admirals in 2015? 

2.  After finishing the N.Y. Times readings and gathering facts and answers, write an essay to describe a comparison of Admirals Farragut and Buchanon.  Include information that is "major," and details that are "interesting."  Include in your essay a catchy introduction (states the theme  clearly, and the problem of comparing two great historical men, and organized paragraphs with main ideas clearly stated in each.  Write a conclusion that works well with the introduction.


3.  An alternative activity would be to present the admirals through a computer presentation (Power Point, Prezy, or other) or a blog. 

Use information from the Wikipedia articles, and then use the N.Y. Times articles to complete a compare and contrast Project Form:

Click Here for a Print Version of This Form


NAME______________________________________________ DATE______________


Directions:  While reading about the two subjects to be compared and contrasted, think about the relationship between two or more facts about each item (make notes while you read the articles)

Write in your own words your description of the comparison or contrast.  Use both of your source articles to get these from (one from each). You may add an additional page(s) if needed

 Write the Article Title and Source above each title in the cells provided with the table.

Article 1 facts

Article 2 facts







Similarities: How are the facts from each article similar, connected or related? How are they alike, whether in terms of life events, career events, and personality? How are the two alike (generalized statement from reading).




Differences: How: How do the facts from each article contrast (opposite or un-like)? How are they different, whether in terms of life events, career events, and personality? How are the two different (generalized statement from reading).




The Two Texts Together: How does reading the two articles, together, make you see or understand things you might not if you read them separately? If the creators or subjects of these texts were to have a conversation, what is one thing they might say to each other?




Questions and Reactions: What questions do these articles and their description raise for you? What reactions do you have to them, either individually or together?






Concept for the comparison form from N.Y. Times Learning Center, Text to Text


Admiral Franklin Buchanon, CSS-Navy

Rear Admiral David Farragut, USN

N.Y. Times "Damn the Torpedoes"

N.Y. Times "The Making of Rear Admiral Farragut"

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