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Henry Knox
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Military Personnel
    (July 25, 1750-October 25, 1806)
    Born in Boston, Massachusetts
    Major general
    Chief of Artillery under George Washington during the American Revolution
    First US Secretary of War (1785-94)
    Namesake for Knoxville, Tennessee and Fort Knox, Kentucky
    His wife's parents were British Loyalists, which must have made for some awkward meetings with the in-laws.
    He and his wife both weighed over 300 pounds and were known in New York as the 'largest couple in the city.'
    After retiring from government, he tried lumbering, brick manufacturing and land speculation without success, building up debts that bankrupted his heirs.
    He died as a result of swallowing a chicken bone, which pierced his intestines, causing peritonitis.
    At age 12, he went to work as a clerk in a bookstore to support his widowed mother and his younger siblings.
    His achievements during the Revolution included transporting cannons from Fort Ticonderoga, New York, to Boston, forcing the British to evacuate the city; overseeing the crossing of the Delaware; and establishing the Continental Army's first officer training facilities.
    He urged the US to reform its Indian policies by honoring its treaties and treating the tribes as sovereign nations.

Credit: C. Fishel


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