Friday, May 30, 2008
by Lee White
The following are descriptions from the letters of Liet. Col. Walter A. Roher of the 20th Mississippi Infantry, these were puplished in Civil War Times Illustrated in their July, 1979 issue;
Letter of Jan. 28th, 1864, describing General Leonidas Polk, "He wore a rather rusty looking uniform, made no attempt at display in dress...In person I think the Bishop is at least six feet in height, large portly, and as straight as an arrow, has the appearance of a man who enjoyed good living before the war and would have no objection to it now if he could get it, he has a good head, rather too round, covered with grey hair, a good face with a full beard, closely trimmed, a big mouth with a few dirty teeth in front, weighs about two hundred pounds..."
He describes Forrest as, "well mounted and wore a shiny black hat such as the Blockade runners bring through from Memphis and sell at $80-he had on a pretty good uniform except the hat, he must be at least six feet in height, his hair is long and almost white, he wears his whiskers only around his mouth and under his chin, shaving the sides of his face, his heard is black, I suppose he manages to get dye enough from Memphis to keep it so, he has a keen, gray eye, his forehead is high and expansive, his face is long, smooth and sallow, and tapers to the chin, his lips are thing and tightly compressed, he seldom smiles and is said never to laugh..."