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Nobody But the People Hardcover – March 1, 2008

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Editorial Reviews

Review

In telling this important and multi-layered story, Trest has given us a history that is vivid and alive. -- Frye Gaillard, author of Cradle of Freedom: Alabama and the Movement That Changed America

The author tells Patterson's story in a highly readable narrative style. -- First Draft

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 450 pages
  • Publisher: NewSouth Books; First Edition edition (March 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1588382214
  • ISBN-13: 978-1588382214
  • Product Dimensions: 1.8 x 6.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #350,561 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on May 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Award-nominated historian Warren Trest presents Nobody But the People: The Life and Times of Alabama's Youngest Governor, the first authorized biography of former Alabama Governor John Patterson. A crime-fighting attorney general propelled into the governor's office following the brutal murder of his father, John Patterson dedicated himself to keeping Phenix City cleaned up. He led the state's resistance to federally ordered desegregation; later, he admitted to regret that he had neglected to do more to help Alabama's black citizens achieve equal rights. His administration improved public education, highway construction, law enforcement, old-age benefits, and brought about the state's first program of medical care for the elderly, among other accomplishments. He put loan sharks out of business and changed Alabama law so that low-income and middle-income families could borrow money without paying debilitating interest rates. A handful of black-and-white photographs illustrate this compelling, true-life story of Patterson and the many achievements he made during his four-year administration - achievements that are all too often overlooked when examining his stance on civil rights. Highly recommended, and a welcome addition to American biography and Alabama state history collections.
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Format: Hardcover
Good book if you like Alabama/Southern politics and history...and especially good if you grew up in Alabama during this period of time.

Gives rare insight into thinking and backroom deals of Alabama/Southern politics in one of the most racially charged, turblent times in the nation's history. John Patterson changed his views on race and apologized out of thought and sincerity. George Wallace may have apologized because of the next election. Not to question the sincerity of Wallace's apology, but Patterson's expression of regret did come when he was not running for office and was no longer a part of Alabama politics.

Books's real value, in addition to history, is its ability to show that because people are political opponents, sometimes even enemies,they can still respect one another and maintain a relationship that could develop into a friendship when their days in the political fish bowl are over. It is an ability that our govermental "leaders" on both state and national levels sorely need today. The lesson here is never to take the issues of today too seriously and too personal. There's always tomorrow,in and out of office.

The books's best parts are about the Phenix City cleanup after his father was assassinated while trying to free the city from the grips of the mob; Patterson's race for governor when he became the only man to beat George Wallace in Alabama; and his time as an appellate judge of the state supreme court, appointed there by his old political adversary George C. Wallace.

All in all, a very good biography of Alabama's youngest governor who went on to become the the state's oldest sitting judge.
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Format: Hardcover
Undoubtedly, former Alabama Governor John Patterson placed himself on the wrong side of history in enforcing Alabama laws against civil rights activists in the 1950s and 1960s. However, there is a great deal more to this biography of Patterson than racial segregation in the South and the civil rights movement. The reader will learn the gripping story of Patterson's effort to rid his home town, Phenix City, of organized crime and help solve one of the Nation's most bizzare crimes - the murder of his father, Attorney General nominee Albert Patterson, by crooked State and local officials. Beyond the exclusive realm of Alabama politics, the reader will discover little known facts about John F. Kennedy's presidential campaign and the disaster at Cuba's Bay of Pigs. The student of military history will be interested to read about Patterson's World War II experiences in North Africa and Europe. A most recent event covered by Patterson's biography is the ouster of Alabama's Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore, who displayed a monument to the Ten Commandments at the Court, by a special Supreme Court panel presided over by Patterson. The book is highly readable and entertaining, a real page turner.
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By jandrew on February 18, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book covers a critical time in Alabama history and is full of behind the scene doings....It takes forever to read because you will go back time and time again to make sure you got the facts straight....well organized
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By DeWayne Warren on November 21, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Good read on the life of John Patterson.
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