The Man That Was Used Up (Poe)

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The Man That Was Used Up
Summary of the Short Story
Microsummary: A curious individual sought to uncover the truth about a renowned general's mysterious appearance and discovered that the general was a collection of artificial body parts due to injuries sustained in battle.

A man was eager to learn more about a certain Brevet Brigadier-General John A. B. C. Smith, who was known for his fine appearance and impressive accomplishments.

Brevet Brigadier-General John A. B. C. Smith — war hero; tall, distinguished, and composed; made up of artificial body parts due to battle injuries.

The man's curiosity was piqued by the mysterious circumstances surrounding the General's involvement in a campaign against the Bugaboo and Kickapoo Indians. He sought information from various acquaintances, but each time he was interrupted or left with more questions than answers.

Determined to get to the bottom of the mystery, the man decided to visit the General himself. Upon arriving at the General's home, he was surprised to find a strange-looking bundle on the floor, which turned out to be the General in a disassembled state. As the man watched in amazement, the General's servant, Pompey, helped him put on various prosthetic limbs and devices, including a cork leg, an artificial arm, a wig, a set of false teeth, and even a prosthetic eye.

The General explained that he had sustained severe injuries during the battle with the Bugaboo and Kickapoo Indians, which had left him with numerous missing body parts. However, he praised the inventiveness of the age they lived in, as it had allowed him to regain his impressive appearance and abilities through the use of these prosthetics.

There is nothing at all like it; we are a wonderful people, and live in a wonderful age.

The man finally understood the truth about the General's mysterious past and left with a newfound appreciation for the resilience and resourcefulness of Brevet Brigadier-General John A. B. C. Smith.