Pickett, Class of At Gettysburg, Pa. With parade drill precision they descended one slope, ascended the next, and assaulted the formidable Union line only to be forced back in defeat. Less than one fourth of the troops returned from the charge. The event, which was later called "Pickett's Charge," proved to be a turning point in the war. He continued to serve the Confederacy with great devotion throughout and Hill, Class of Hill is best known for his performance as an aggressive Confederate division commander who could move his troops at astonishing speeds.
Stuart, Class of As a cavalry officer and later as commanding general of cavalry in the Confederate Army, Stuart distinguished himself and his cavalry brigade for acts of valor and gallantry. He fought in many fierce battles, including the Battle of Seven Pines; he led multiple raids on Gen. Ewell's depots; he protected the Confederate retreat from Gettysburg. He was killed during a battle against forces commanded by Sheridan.
Each class of cadets elects representatives to serve as class president and fill several administrative positions. Each class crest is required to contain the initials USMA and their class motto.
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Class mottos typically have verbiage that rhymes or is phonetically similar with their class year. Cadets today live and work within the framework of the Cadet Leader Development System CLDS , which specifies the roles that a cadet plays throughout their four years at the academy. Freshmen have no leadership responsibilities, but have a host of duties to perform as they learn how to follow orders and operate in an environment of rigid rank structure, while seniors have significant leadership responsibilities and significantly more privileges that correspond to their rank.
Cadets have a host of extracurricular activities available, most run by the office of the Directorate of Cadet Activities DCA. Plebe knowledge is a lengthy collection of traditions, songs, poems, anecdotes, and facts about the academy, the army, the Old Corps , and the rivalry with Navy that all plebes must memorize during cadet basic training. Other knowledge is historical in nature, including information as found in Bugle Notes. Each cadet class celebrates at least one special "class weekend" per academic year. First class cadets celebrate three different formal occasions.
All of the "class weekends" involve a formal dinner and social dance, known in old cadet slang as a "hop," held at Eisenhower Hall. Since , Army's mascot has officially been a mule because the animal symbolizes strength and perseverance. Fourth class cadets verbally greet upper-class cadets and faculty with "Beat Navy," while the tunnel that runs under Washington Road is named the "Beat Navy" tunnel.
Army also plays the U. Army football began in , when Navy challenged the cadets to a game of the relatively new sport. Navy defeated Army at West Point that year, but Army avenged the loss in Annapolis the following year. The football season marked Navy's fourteenth consecutive victory over Army, the longest streak in the series since inception.
On December 10, Army won for the first time in 14 years, beating Navy, 21— The football team plays its home games at Michie Stadium , where the playing field is named after Earl Blaik.
Cadets' attendance is mandatory at football games and the Corps stands for the duration of the game. At all home games, one of the four regiments marches onto the field in formation before the team takes the field and leads the crowd in traditional Army cheers. Between the and seasons, Army's football program was a member of Conference USA , but has since reverted to its former independent status. Though football may receive a lot of media attention due to its annual rivalry game, West Point has a long history of athletics in other NCAA sports. The men's lacrosse team has won eight national championships and appeared in the NCAA tournament sixteen times.
In its early years, lacrosse was used by football players, like the "Lonesome End" Bill Carpenter , to stay in shape during the off-season. It was the first March Madness tournament appearance for any Army basketball team. The head coach of that team, Maggie Dixon , died soon after the season at only 28 years of age. Bob Knight , formerly the winningest men's basketball coach in NCAA history, began his head coaching career at Army in the late s  before moving on to Indiana and Texas Tech.
One of Knight's players at Army was Mike Krzyzewski , who later was head coach at Army before moving on to Duke , where he has won five national championships. Due to West Point's age and its unique mission of producing Army officers, it has many time-honored traditions.
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The list below are some of the traditions unique to or started by the academy. The Cullum number is a reference and identification number assigned to each graduate. It was created by brevet Major General George W. Cullum USMA Class of who, in , began the monumental work of chronicling the biographies of every graduate. He assigned number one to the first West Point graduate, Joseph Gardner Swift , and then numbered all successive graduates in sequence.
From through the Class of , graduates were listed by general order of Merit. Beginning with the Class of , graduates were listed alphabetically, and then by date of graduation. Seven graduates have an "A" suffix after their Cullum Number. For various reasons these graduates were omitted from the original class roster, and a suffix letter was added to avoid renumbering the entire class and subsequent classes. West Point began the collegiate tradition of the class ring, beginning with the class of Before , cadets could design much of the ring individually, but now only the center stone can be individualized.
The academy library has a large collection of cadet rings on display. Immediately after senior cadets return to the barracks after receiving their rings, fourth class cadets take the opportunity to surround senior cadets from their company and ask to touch their rings. After reciting a poem known to cadets as the Ring Poop , the senior usually grants the freshmen permission to touch the ring. Donations of class rings are melted and merged. A portion of the original gold is infused with gold from preceding melts to become part of the rings for each 'Firstie' class.
West Point is home to the Sylvanus Thayer Award. Given annually by the academy since , the award honors an outstanding citizen whose service and accomplishments in the national interest exemplify the academy's motto, "Duty, Honor, Country. The award has been awarded to many notable American citizens, to include George H.
Perry , Bob Hope , and Condoleezza Rice. Sedgwick's bronze statue has spurs with rowels that freely rotate.
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Legend states that if a cadet is in danger of failing a class, they are to don their full-dress parade uniform the night before the final exam. The cadet visits the statue and spins the rowels at the stroke of midnight. Then the cadet runs back to the barracks as fast as he or she can. According to legend, if Sedgwick's ghost catches them, they will fail the exam. Otherwise the cadet will pass the exam and the course.
The game is played with full pads and helmets using eight-man football rules. Legend states that Army will beat Navy if the goats win, and the opposite if the engineers win. From the earliest days of the academy, one form of punishment for cadets who commit regulatory infractions has been a process officially known as punishment tours. Cadets are "awarded" punishment tours based upon the severity of the infraction.
Being late to class or having an unkempt room may result in as little as 5 hours while more severe misconduct infractions may result in upwards of 60 to 80 hours. In its most traditional form, punishment tours are "walked off" by wearing the dress gray uniform under arms and walking back and forth in a designated area of the cadet barracks courtyard, known as "Central Area. Certain cadets whose academics are deficient may also conduct "sitting tours," where they have to "sit hours" in a designated academic room in a controlled study environment, for which they receive half credit towards their reduction of tours.
Cadets' uniforms are inspected before their tours begin each day. A small number of cadets may be relieved of their tours that day if their uniforms are exceptionally presentable. Another tradition associated with punishment tours is that any visiting head of state has the authority to grant "amnesty," releasing all cadets with outstanding hours from the remainder of their assigned tours.
An unofficial motto of the academy's history department is "Much of the history we teach was made by people we taught. Grant and Dwight D. Eisenhower ; the president of the Confederate States of America , Jefferson Davis ; and three foreign heads of state: Grant , Robert E. Stuart and Oliver O. Eichelberger , James M. Patton , Joseph Stilwell , Maxwell D.
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West Point graduate Frank Medina organized and led the nationwide campaign that brought the Congressional Gold Medal to the 65th Infantry Regiment , also known as the Borinqueneers. Among American universities, the academy is fifth on the list of total winners for Rhodes Scholarships ,  seventh for Marshall Scholarships and fourth on the list of Hertz Fellowships.
On May 26, , the U. Postal Service released a cent stamp in its honor. As an active-duty U. The DHR is the higher headquarters for: Additionally, active duty Army support, such as recent field artillery training conducted at Camp Buckner in July , is sometimes provided by the 10th Mountain Division , based at Fort Drum , NY. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see West Point disambiguation.
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National Register of Historic Places. History of the United States Military Academy. United States Military Academy grounds and facilities. West Point athletic facilities. Superintendent of the United States Military Academy.
Army Black Knights football. Army Black Knights men's basketball. United States Military Academy class ring. Retrieved 25 December Retrieved 4 November Retrieved 11 May Retrieved 14 December Archived from the original on 21 May Congressional Documents and Debates, — ". Retrieved 30 December Retrieved 16 December Smithsonian National Museum of American History. Retrieved 17 December Retrieved 10 January Higher Education in Transition. Retrieved 19 January Retrieved 20 December Retrieved 14 July Retrieved 2 January United States House of Representatives. Archived from the original on 3 August Retrieved 4 April The West Point Hazing Scandal —".
Retrieved 31 January Smithsonian National American History Museum. Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates of the U. Archived from the original PDF on 20 July Retrieved 1 June See class introductions for each class from to Retrieved 20 January Retrieved 25 January The New York Times. Archived from the original on 5 June Archived from the original on 22 February Retrieved 15 February Archived from the original on 11 May West Point Association of Graduates. National Historic Landmarks Program. Archived from the original on 9 January Retrieved 4 January Archived from the original on 8 January Retrieved 29 December Retrieved 15 May Archived from the original on 26 May Retrieved 13 January Retrieved January 20, Archived from the original on 16 January Retrieved 3 February He now lives in the Hudson Highlands.
It includes a sampling of the accomplishments of the military academy's doctors, clergy, builders, and Other Leaders, Other Heroes: The Engineers and Americas Routes of Commerce. The Father of the Military Academy.