Nathaniel Greene was one of the most celebrated generals in the American Revolution. He was a favorite of General George Washington. When Greene took over the southern command, he was shocked at how ill equipped the soldiers were. Their lack of basics caused the soldiers to be demoralized. When told there was no money available, he took from his own resources to supply the soldiers’ uniforms, food, and equipment. Greene spent himself into bankruptcy, and no offer for reimbursement was made by the politicians. While Greene’s men fought superbly, Greene himself went deeper into debt.
After the war was over several prominent people, including Alexander Hamilton, tried to figure out ways to help Greene. Exhausted, his health broke and he died at the age of 44. Feeling somewhat guilty, the politicians finally paid his widow a small reimbursement – only half of what they promised. His men, however, never forgot his great sacrifice. Today, there is a town in East Tennessee, Greeneville, which bears his name.