Which presidents has history forgotten?
New book examines nation's leaders
- Duration 4:15
- Date Sep 20, 2012
New book examines nation's leaders
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Situated 25 anniversary of the signing the US constitution the document is created the role of the president since then 43 different men.
Have assumed the role of commander in chief but while many are remembered fondly in our history books -- -- A lot between the pages and joining us now -- historian and author of the brand new book don't know much about the American president's.
-- -- David it's great to see it yes -- just told me that you started this when you were nine years old you found the copying your -- -- That's right I just some my project about the president's written when I was a kid in third grade 1963.
-- I've been thinking about this and working on this a long time.
It's what it's -- a lot of people asked me how to get kids interest in history.
My love history came from going to places like Gettysburg and valley -- in fort icon to robo or -- marquis allowed on Long Island.
Where I was -- the sense of history happens to real people real places it's not just about marble statues and dates and battles and speeches.
And that's what I've tried to bring to the government -- here.
And those -- the -- -- -- let's talk about some mothers in need some need some credit William McKinley for example the 25 present.
And -- president in many respects overshadowed of course because he was assassinated and then -- replaced by Theodore Roosevelt please don't call him Teddy he hated that and come from McKinley was the first modern president in an innocence and put America on the global stage of course.
Took America through -- of brief war but really started transition to a modern -- -- -- Which gets overshadowed because Roosevelt came along and was such a larger than life character interesting Grover Cleveland the 22 and 24 president why should we put him from the back burner but the -- well I think he gets overlooked and and perhaps unfairly he was an interesting character first -- interesting because when he ran for the first time.
He was accused of fathering a child out of wedlock.
You would think that would have destroyed a politician late nineteenth century America but he told his staff tell the truth -- out -- and that's and he.
And this this problem did not affect him he was a very effective president.
-- had to deal with a difficult sounds like a Republican high tariffs that he -- opposed -- -- inflation imperialism is subsidies to business well he also went to.
Oversaw the worst crisis of the time at that point think the government was about to go broke he invited JPMorgan to come to Washington.
On a handshake deal.
Morgan agreed to buy bonds in exchange for gold the US gold reserves were almost gone and that -- JPMorgan and basically saved America from bankruptcy filing just -- the bad apples that touched it to say it that way but Millard Fillmore Franklin Pierce and James Buchanan you believe that they Altria were instrumental.
In in causing the civil war as well I what I what I think it is fair to say and it's interesting these are three -- leading up to the three worst presidents leading up to the greatest president these are the three presidents in office before Lincoln.
And they did very little and some case worsened the rise to the civil war and for that we have to -- treat them very very harshly particularly Buchanan who actually.
Engineered in some respects the Dred Scott decision which of course was that the -- my worst.
Supreme Court decision in history he thought it -- prevent the civil war.
It actually -- true the eight plus presidents these names we do you know George Washington Abraham Lincoln Theodore Roosevelt.
And Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
Greatness because of the country crises they faced Lincoln of course -- America through the civil war Roosevelt through the depression and world -- to Theodore Roosevelt and never crisis on that stage but.
Elevated the presidency into something it had never been before.
Really became the face of the presidency.
And made the White House the symbol that it is Washington of course because he invented the presidency and he could've stayed.
But at the end of it he walked away it's not yet.
All of these four men -- the greatest ball had flaws.
And we have to remember that about all the president's and one other thing John F.
Kennedy once said.
Don't judge these people unless you've set sat down behind the desk and read the -- I think that's fair and -- any way to keep in mind Ken Davis the other don't know much about.
Presidents fascinating lesson thanks so much thanks so much -- -- had an excellent.