Joseph Wheeler: Uniting the Blue and the Gray

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This text analyzes and evaluates the participation of Joseph Wheeler in the Spanish-American War. Southerners believe that Wheeler had a significant impact on the unification of the North and South during this period. Second, this historiographic writing acquaints the secondary teacher of history with the importance of the war in America's move toward imperialism. This research suggests there is a relationship between Joseph Wheeler and the healing of the Civil War wounds. This research investigates two different approaches to Wheeler's involvement in the war. The first approach involved the historical interpretation that McKinley's decision to appoint Wheeler as a Volunteer General was based on political expediency and not on ability. The second approach involved the examination of General Wheeler's primary documents and their interpretations of his participation in the war.

Results of this research showed the following: (1) Joseph Wheeler's involvement in the Spanish-American War hastened the healing of North/South wounds; (2) Wheeler's involvement in the overall scheme of the war was more than token; and (3) Wheeler was perceived as an American hero by all regions after the war.

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