Profession: French General and Aristocrat
Why Famous: A key figure in the American Revolutionary War, the French Revolution and the July Revolution, Lafayette is often referred to as Hero of Two Worlds for his crucial roles in American and French history.
He was a close friend of George Washington, Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson and played a key military role at the Siege of Yorktown which ended the American War of Independence. In France he helped write the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen.
After a period of arrest following the Revolution - Napoleon secured his release - he visited the United States in 1824, where he visited all 24 states. In 1830 he declined an offer to become French dictator and instead supported, then turned against, Louis Philippe I in the July Revolution.
- 1777-06-13 Marquis de Lafayette lands in US
- 1777-07-31 Marquis de Lafayette, 19, made major-general of Continental Army