Sheridan claimed he was born in albany, new york, the third child of six by john and mary meenagh sheridan, immigrants from the parish of killinkere, county cavan, ireland. He grew up in somerset, ohio. Fully grown, he reached only 5 feet 5 inches tall, a stature that led to the nickname, “little phil.” abraham lincoln described his appearance in a famous anecdote: “a brown, chunky little chap, with a long body, short legs, not enough neck to hang him, and such long arms that if his ankles itch he can scratch them without stooping.” sheridan (march 6, 1831 august 5, 1888) was a career united states army officer, graduating in 1853 his meteoric rise led to his appointment as a general officer. His career was noted for his rapid rise to major general and his close association with lt. Gen. Ulysses s. Grant, who transferred sheridan from command of an infantry division in the western theatre to lead the cavalry corps of the army of the potomac in the east. In 1864, he defeated confederate forces in the shenandoah valley and his destruction of the economic infrastructure of the valley, called “the burning” by residents, was one of the first uses of scorched earth tactics in the war. In 1865, his cavalry pursued gen. Robert e. Lee and was instrumental in forcing his surrender at appomattox. His civil war appointment were; 1st lieutenant 4th infantry (1st march 1861); captain 13th infantry (14th may 1861); chief quartermaster army of southwest missouri, department of the missouri (25th december early 1862); colonel 2nd michigan cavalry (25th may 1862); commanding 2nd brigade, cavalry division, army of the mississippi 1st june 3rd september 1862); brigadier general u.S.V. (1st july 1862); commanding 11th division, army of the ohio, (29th september 1862); commanding 11th division, 3rd corps, army of the ohio (29th september 5th november 1862); commanding 3rd division, right wing, 14th army corps, army of the cumberland (5th november 9th january 1863); major general u.S.V. (31st december 1862); commanding 3rd division, 20th army corps, army of the cumberland (9th january 9th october 1863); commanding 2nd division, 4trh army corps, army of the cumberland (10th october 17th february 1864); commanding cavalry corps, army of the potomac (4th april 2nd august 1864); brigadier general u.S.A. (20th september 1864); major general u.S.A. (8th november 1864); commanding army of the shenandoah & middle military division (6th august 27th february 1865); commanding sheridans cavalry command (march april 1865).His fiery irish temper led sheridan to clash with generals meade, warren, duffie and stevenson. This recurring problem caused his reassignment by grant to the newly formed military division. In the post war environment he failed in his post in the reconstruction government of texas and louisiana. Although appointed as commander in chief in 1884, sheridan died on the 5th august 1888 from a heart attack.