Tall orders, part 4

Series: Random Thoughts | Story 27

As we saw last week, Martin Van Buren Bates was an imposing figure, standing 7 feet, 9 inches tall and weighing 475 pounds. Some sources, however, say that he was even larger in both height and weight than those statistics indicate.

He grew so fast that measurements recorded in one instance might be outdated a few months or years later. Regardless of exactly how tall he was and how much he weighed, all sources agree that he was huge.

When the Civil War began in April 1861, Bates was 23 years old, having been born on a farm in eastern Kentucky on Nov. 9, 1837. His slave-owning parents were suff...


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