Start reading Reelecting Lincoln: The Battle For The 1864 Presidency on the free Kindle Reading App or on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Enter a promotion code
or gift card

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

Reelecting Lincoln: The Battle For The 1864 Presidency [Kindle Edition]

John Waugh
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)

Digital List Price: $12.99 What's this?
Print List Price: $18.95
Kindle Price: $10.44
You Save: $8.51 (45%)

Free Kindle Reading App Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $10.44  
Hardcover --  
Paperback $16.10  

Book Description

First time in paperback: "Waugh's excellent account reminds me of Bruce Catton: both are marvelous storytellers."-Grady McWhiney, author of Grant, Lee, Lincoln, and the Radicals

Editorial Reviews Review

The election of 1864, conducted as the Civil War raged, was perhaps the most significant presidential election ever. Abraham Lincoln, revered by many but also savaged by a partisan press and a contentious Congress, faced an opponent of complex and sometimes puzzling motives, General George McClellan. It's no exaggeration to say that the outcome of the election would not only influence the outcome of the war, but that it would affect the future direction of the U.S. John C. Waugh's Reelecting Lincoln, which reads like a novel filled with remarkable characters, provides a lucid narrative of the events.

From Library Journal

The Civil War engulfing the nation consumed Lincoln's energies. The search for a general, leadership of the Republican Party, distribution of patronage, emancipation of the slaves, mediation of a tumultuous cabinet?all filled the president's first term. Veteran newspaper correspondent Waugh (Class of 1846, LJ 2/1/94) examines the impact of these issues on Lincoln's reelection in 1864. Democrats selected Gen. George B. McClellan to run on a peace plank. A few Republicans wanted to nominate Salmon P. Chase and others hoped General Ulysses Grant would accept the nomination, but Lincoln, who wanted to see the war through to victory, was the party's choice. Using a variety of sources, including newspapers (but not Lincoln's hometown papers in Illinois), Waugh's narrative has a newspaper style including anecdotes, short paragraphs, and numerous quotes will appeal to a lay audience. Recommended for public libraries.?Patricia Ann Owens, Wabash Valley Coll., Mt. Carmel, Ill.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 5867 KB
  • Print Length: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press (April 30, 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #922,052 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding! March 19, 2002
For a history buff this is a must read, especially if you are a Civil War fanatic. On the other hand, those who are not really into history or politics might just enjoy this book also. The twists and turns of the plot, the shouting matches, the suspense, and the knife in the back tactics of some of the main players make this story almost worthy of being a daytime soap. The only thing missing is the sex.
Many readers will find it hard to believe that in 1864 Abraham Linclon was not the beloved figure he is today. Not only was he a target for the Democrats but also came under heavy fire from many in his own party. Had not Sherman, Farragut, and Sheridan given the Union great wins on the field in the Fall of 1864 it is quite possible that Lincoln would have lost the election. Still more probable is that if the Democrats themselves had not made major mistakes in their platform and choice for Vice President, George McCellan would have been the 17th President of the United States. The trials Lincoln faced within his own party makes one wonder just how much better he would have done than did Johnson during reconstruction.
John Waugh does a masterful job of telling his story. He keeps the book interesting from cover to cover and almost makes the reader feel they are there. Of special note is his ability to help the reader keep the players in this story straight. Many people who were prominate in this campaign are somewhat lost in history but Waugh never confuses the reader as he weaves them in and out of his text. I also found it very interesting how he pointed out the similar trials Jefferson Davis faced in Richmond.
The most amazing thing is that elections were held at all during such a crisis. It is a credit to the leaders of both the Union and the Confederacy that they never really thought about not holding elections right on schedule. Thanks to Mr. Waugh for reminding us just how dear our form of government is. Thanks also for an outstanding book.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Once Upon a Time, there was a President... July 28, 2000
As his narrative style demonstrates, author John Waugh is a great storyteller; his vivid descriptions of the many players involved in the campaign of 1864 are details one might expect from a work of historical fiction. But this is not a novel. It is a well-researched, very readable history that illustrates Abraham Lincoln's political skill and the importance of his re-election to the fate of the union. What quickly becomes apparent is Lincoln's skill in successfully juggling the interests of opponents both inside and outside his party. While other politicians may have been more dedicated to the immediate abolition of slavery, one begins to understand that Lincoln's overriding goal above all else was the end of the war and the restoration of the union. Waugh's work suggests that Lincoln's personality, and perhaps more importantly, moderate ideology, were crucial to that goal.
The book does a thorough job of showcasing Lincoln's many opponents as well as illustrating the President's own doubts about getting re-elected. Still, after finishing the book, I never really got the sense that Lincoln's re-election was ever really in serious jeopardy. After all, the subject of the book is the "battle for the 1864 presidency." Granted, we have the advantage of knowing the outcome, and, for Lincoln, the threat of defeat was indeed real. But many of the quotes of the doomsday prognosticators seemed more like wishful thinking from Lincoln-hating politicians who could never attain the numbers to give him a more serious challenge. When one removes the book's microscope on Lincoln's political opponents, the big picture would seem to suggest that the people of the north were loyal to the President all along. In any case, keeping one's perspective might be a good idea.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An in depth study of the fight for the 1864 election: October 20, 2003
Author John C. Waugh has assembled a very large study of the political battle faced by President Abraham Lincoln as he ran for his second term in office. Waugh brings the reader to the front lines of struggle faced by the Lincoln administration and various political parties looking to cause unrest and hinder Lincoln's chances at reelection. The book also looks at many players involved in either helping Lincoln or destroying his chances. As the book progresses it uncovers odd political gain of many such as radicals trying anything to ruin Lincoln's chances while hysteria and hype flow through the papers. Anyone looking to understand the battle for the 1864 election owes it to them selves to read this book! 5 STARS!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully readable account of a fascinating campaign August 21, 2000
This is one of the best history books I have ever read. John C. Waugh has written a lively story of an extraordinary election campaign - the reelection of Lincoln in 1864 as the Civil War dragged on. The contrasts with modern election campaigns are striking. We take 2-term presidencies as if not a given then certainly a standard goal. When Lincoln ran again in 1864, however, no president had been reelected in over 30 years! Neither Lincoln nor his Democratic opponent, George B. McClellan (the general Lincoln fired because he had the "slows") attended the conventions that nominated them or made any campaign speeches once they were nominated. Instead surrogates did all the compaigning for the two candidates. Mr. Waugh's book is a wonderful account of all the lively personalities who were players large and small in this campaign. As a newspaperman himself, he clearly relishes the highly partisan style of journalism which was prevalent at this time, and delights in leading his reader to a lively newspaper quote, or to yet another funny Lincoln story. I would have liked to have seen a few maps to help follow the Civil War campaigns. I also think Mr. Waugh would have done well to provide a brief "cast of characters" listing to help the reader keep all these people sorted out. But these are minor quibbles and this is history the way it should be written - always lively, informative and never losing sight of the humanity of the players upon the painted stage at this pivotal moment in American history. If you are an American history buff, a Lincoln admirer, or a person who loves the presidential campaign season, then this is a book you will delight in.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Waugh is a personal favorite of mine
Mr. Waugh is a personal favorite of mine. His works are well written. I have several of his books. In my opinion, " The Class of 1846" is the hands down best!
Published 3 months ago by Gaston Pontoon
5.0 out of 5 stars Great review of a historically important campaign!!!
This book offers great review of an election that was fought out when the nation really was divided. It deals with the election of 1864, and as a result, looks at the Lincoln vs. Read more
Published on October 22, 2012 by Dr. Who, What, Where?
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Chrononicle of Life and Politics in 1864 America
Author John Waugh begins this book by promising the reader not "a historical treatise" but a reporter's account of the election campaign of 1864 as he might have covered it had he... Read more
Published on July 10, 2012 by Rule 62 Ken
4.0 out of 5 stars Lincoln the Politician
This book reminds us that, although we have made Lincoln an icon, he was a man, and, in particular, he was a man who was a politician. Read more
Published on October 13, 2010 by KinksRock
4.0 out of 5 stars Once Upon a Time, there was a President...
(original version posted July 28, 2000)

As his narrative style demonstrates, author John Waugh is a great storyteller; his vivid descriptions of the many players... Read more
Published on June 14, 2006 by Brett Leggett
4.0 out of 5 stars The Union was at stake - nothing less
The premise of John Waugh's book "Reelecting Lincoln" is that the election of 1864 was one of the most critical, if not the singularly most important, election in the history of... Read more
Published on May 27, 2006 by Eric Hobart
4.0 out of 5 stars Reelecting Lincoln: The Battle for the 1864 Presidency
I personally liked the book from a purely historical standpoint. It was a bit dry in parts and a bit too flowery in others but from the view of a person of the era watching the... Read more
Published on October 24, 2004 by FLFF
3.0 out of 5 stars 1864: A Tale of One City
John C. Waugh's book is billed as an account of the 20th election campaign of the United States, between Union (Republican) candidate and incumbent President Abraham Lincoln and... Read more
Published on September 18, 2004 by Omer Belsky
5.0 out of 5 stars 1864 and 2004 - The Parallels
In 1864 Abraham Lincoln was facing re-election, and the prospects of defeat were so great that Lincoln actually penned a note to his cabinet urging cooperation with the incoming... Read more
Published on August 5, 2004 by Alan Rockman
4.0 out of 5 stars Worthwhile read about a central political decision
Reelecting Lincoln : The Battle for the 1864 Presidency by John C. Waugh is an interesting study of the most important election in the history of our country. Read more
Published on October 21, 2001 by Fred M. Blum
Search Customer Reviews
Search these reviews only

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.


There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Look for Similar Items by Category