Ulysses S. Grant: In The Interests of the Whole People

Thomas J. Rowland
Department of History, University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, WI, USA

Series: First Men, America’s Presidents
BISAC: HIS036040

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History generally has not been kind to Ulysses Grant. For the longest time, even his military reputation had been sullied by the stinging indictments of Lost Cause advocates who enjoyed unquestioned sway over the popular interpretation of Civil War history. The apotheosis of Robert E. Lee’s role in the war required the diminishment of Grant’s reputation. Fortunately, this impression has been convincingly reversed and Grant is now hailed as the proper savior of the Union.

The same reversal cannot be said of interpretations of Ulysses S. Grant, the President. Until recently, Grant has been pilloried as a hopelessly naïve, bumbling incompetent who was way over his head in the political arena. The combined forces of self-styled reformers of his own day and the criticism of Lost Cause devotees consigned Grant to the ranks of America’s worst presidents. In the popular imagination, as reflected in ongoing surveys, polls, and rankings, Grant still suffers from a poor evaluation.

Only in the last generation of historians have we begun to revisit the Grant presidency and suggest that he may well have been a very capable and strong president; one who was inspired by noble sentiments and aspirations that simply were not attainable in his own time. This study continues in the revisionist tradition to suggest that Grant was an excellent chief executive even though much of what he strove to accomplish was not realized in his time. (Imprint: Nova)

Foreword

Preface

Acknowlegments

Chapter 1 - From the Banks of the Ohio to the Rio Grande, 1822-1846 (pp. 1-22)

Chapter 2 - From the Rio Grande to the Upper Mississippi (1846-1861) (pp. 23-48)

Chapter 3 - Galena to Appomattox: Grant‘s Civil War, 1861-1865 (pp. 49-80)

Chapter 4 - Appomattox to the White House (pp. 81-112)

Chapter 5 - Apex to Nadir: Grant Presides over Reconstruction (pp. 113-148)

Chapter 6 - The Conduct of Foreign Affairs (pp. 149-180)

Chapter 7 - Other Affairs of State during the Grant Administrations (pp. 181-210)

Chapter 8 - Old Soldiers Fade Away: The Final Years (pp. 211-234)

Selected Bibliography

Index

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