Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on July 23, 2010
There are some positive aspects to this book. I'm just not convinced Mr. Chadwick is a great writer. The prose comes off a bit choppy. Also, there are some incorrect statements: Alexander Stephens was a House member, not a Senator. John Bell was not the "Third Democrat" in the race. As a matter of fact, he was a Whig as U.S. Senator, and even was a Know-Nothing for a while. Early in the book, Chadwick totally blows it on a brief description of the Dred Scott case -- his wording is not an accurate summation of what the case decided.

I'm also a bit perplexed by the subtitle. Many people saw Lincoln's victory, as the book discusses, so saying no one saw it coming is at odds with what the book says. Also, ignoring the South when you wouldn't win a single state in that section isn't exactly "audacious" in my mind.

It's a decent historical overview of the nation's most significant election. But there will be better books written about the contest of 1860.
22 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on December 12, 2009
Really good book. Very informative and very easy to read for a history book. There is alot of info not often discussed about the 1860 election that is brought up in this book. The author also paints a great picture of Lincoln and his political side and how he had the right political friends and ties to sneak into the republican canidacy and steal the election. Overall excellent book.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on February 10, 2012
This book read more like a tedious graduate level thesis. It was informative but the writing was labored, which, obviously made it challenging to read. Perhaps this was a function of the research. I credit the author for his painstaking diligence. But this may explain why other Lincoln biographers paid little attention to the election itself.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The 1860 presidential election stands as the most important race for the White House in American history. "Lincoln for President" is Bruce Chadwick's careful examination of the election which catapulted Abraham Lincoln, an obscure Illinois lawyer to the pinnacle of political power.
The election was complex and difficult. There were four contenders for the office.
1. Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) our greatest president was a dark horse in the campaign. Lincoln was a moderate on the flammable slavery issue. His goal was to preserve the Union even if that meant making an accomodation with the Southern firebrands who opposed his position. Lincoln won on the third ballot at the Republican National Convention in Chicago after defeating his chief rival New Yorker William Seward. Seward had served two terms as Governor and Senator of New York and was a heavy favorite to win the nomination. However, many opposed him due to his strong anti-slavery stand. Seward patched up things with Lincoln since he wanted to become Secretary of State (which he did) in the Lincoln administration opening the way to a run for POTUS in 1864. Thurlow Weed, the canny Tammany Hall operative, worked closely with Lincoln and Seward to ensure Old Abe's victory at the polls on November 6, 1860. Lincoln would win the election carrying such needed states as Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana and Illinois. Lincoln was also able to win the American Party's support. The Wide-Awake movement of over
500,00 young Lincoln fans helped stir up voter support for the lanky Illinoisan.
2. Stephen Douglas. The little giant won the Illinois Senate race from Lincoln in 1858. He was the standard bearer for the Northern Democrats. He was sunk by his advocacy for the Kansas-Nebraska Bill and the suspicions of the South.
3. John Breckinridge-The scion of one of Kentucky's most powerful families served as both a US Senator from Kentucky and also the Vice-President under Democratic POTUS James Buchannan. While destesting slavery and working as as a lawyer in Louisville he,nevertheless, represented the slaveholding southern cause.
4. John Bell was the candidate of the Democratic Union party. He believed Americans should not mention slavery and stand strong for the US Constitution.
Lincoln won due to his crafty strategy working with such political professionals as Judge David Davis. Among their strategy were these key points:
a. Focus on winning swing states in the North since the South would not vote for the Republicans.
b. Lincoln pursued a busy letter writing plan asking for support of his cause.
c. Lincoln successfully worked to bring new voters and young people to his cause.
d. Large rallies, newspaper articles and brochures helped spread Lincoln's message to voters.
e. Lincoln's strong support of a high tariff, the extension of railroads and the Homestead Law in the West aided his cause.
The book is easy reading providing even experienced readers of Lincoln literature a new perspective on Abraham Lincoln. He was a skilled politican who knew how to win friends to his cause through supporting local candidates and building up the Illinois Republican Party. He was a great speaker and the most eloquent of all our presidents in his writing and speeches.
Bruce Chadwick has written a fine book on the 1860 election prelude to the bloody Civil War.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on March 30, 2013
The campaign details leading up to the grand finally has been very well documented. All of the major and minor players in the election season of both the political parties have been correctly presented. This should be a good companion book for the undergrad history students.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on May 28, 2011
I thought the title was a bit overblown but this is a solid effort to show the political acumen of a man too often treated like an icon rather than a human being. Solid in research: even-handed in approach. This is well worth reading by Lincoln scholars and fans
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on January 26, 2010
With the Bicentennial of Lincoln's birth almost over, it seemed impossible that something substantial might be added to the scores of books (far more than "Four score", to quote Old Abe) that have been published on that occasion. And yet, Bruce Chadwick, whose earlier work 1858: Abraham Lincoln, Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, Ulysses S. Grant and the War They Failed to See was a great story on a pivotal year, the one that turned Lincoln after the debates with Stephen Douglas into a nationally known figure, has written a worthy successor. It is the saga of a campaign on the eve of the Civil War that seems so far away - presidential candidates were not expected to campaign in person, that Lincoln's nemesis Douglas broke that gentlemanly tradition was proof of his desperation - and is yet so familiar: there is nothing like the clever preparation of a national convention, seating the right people, having them shout the right slogans. Lincoln's associates were as skilled as the candidate himself, sometimes it seems there were a couple of Axelrods at work. After having started "Lincoln for President" it is hard to put the book aside. Some details are truly astonishing: spreading returns from the polls by telegraph through the land seems to have been a pretty fast and reliable information technology. Shortly after midnight of election day, Lincoln knew he was elected the 16th president. It took much more time in the vaunted Information Age, in 2000 and 2004. Chadwick's wonderful book ends with Lincoln's inauguration. The bigger story lies ahead, of a nation torn, an evil abolished and a life of greatness cut short in a theater.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 26, 2012
This is an interesting picture of Lincoln that goes beyond the normal picture of the man. Great insight into what a fascinating person Lincoln was.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 14, 2012
This book shows what the campaign was like when Lincoln was running. It indicates which states were for and against him and who was working for him and not. It turns out it was an extremely close race and Lincoln won by a very small amount of votes.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 5, 2012
I recommend this book for anybody who wants to know more about Lincoln or more about presidential election politics in general. Well written, fast paced and exciting, even though you know who wins!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.

Your Recently Viewed Items and Featured Recommendations 
 

After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in.