The General is a 1926 silent film starring famous actor Buster Keaton, but there is more to the movie than you might think.

The movie The General was inspired by the Great Locomotive Chase of 1862, when civilian scout James Andrews commandeered a train and took it to Chattanooga, Tennessee, with the goal of doing as much damage as possible to the vital Western and Atlantic Railroad. Andrews recruited 23 union men and seized the General and proceeded to try to break the railroad. However, Andrews and his men did not have enough equipment to do so, and were under pursuit by the Texas, (a confederate locomotive) and also decided not to take another train that was pursuing him. Eventually, Andrews and his men retreated into the woods and were captured, Andrews being executed. As a result of their bravery, the Union gave most of the surviving members the first Medals of Honor.

Note that Buster Keaton played the role of a confederate trying to capture The General in the movie, not the Unionists who captured it.

The General is a very historic locomotive, and serves as a reminder of the men who risked their lives, and some even giving them, for their country.  This is the highest form of bravery, and I honor all of those who fight and die for the right causes.