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Yankee from the West

5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0374984052
ISBN-10: 0374984050
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 436 pages
  • Publisher: Octagon Books (June 1977)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0374984050
  • ISBN-13: 978-0374984052
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,774,647 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Burton Kendall Wheeler was a liberal. But it is important to realize that in early 20th-century America, the label "liberal" did not have the meaning it does today. Rather, for many "liberalism" was still the idea that had once upon a time driven the American colonies to declare their independence: the belief in justice and liberty for the individual, and his protection both from big-business robber barons *and* from powerful government agencies with oppressive ideological agendas. Such was the liberal ideal Wheeler believed in. This is the story of his remarkable life, as told by himself.

Young Burton's origins were suitably humble for a fairy-tale: the youngest of ten children born to cobbler and small farmer Asa Leonard Wheeler. Working his way up, he obtained his law degree in 1905, and was set to move to Seattle when a lost poker game stranded him in Montana. It was thus by pure chance that it was in this state he began his long and eventful political career.

Wheeler first profiled himself as the champion of the little people against the powerful Anaconda Copper Mining Company. During World War I he served as Montana's District Attorney, in which role he kept a cool head in the worst throes of the great spy scare and prevented the sort of grievous civil rights abuses that swept much of the rest of the country. In 1922 he was elected to the Senate, where he would spend four terms. Throughout, Wheeler opposed and exposed abuse of power and the undue influence of the dollar in politics. The story of these years is told with feeling and gusto.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Excellent historical picture of politics in early 20th century Montana and the US entering WW2. Also great insights into Butte, MT and struggles with the Anaconda Company's domination of the local and state economy. Highly recommended for anyone with an interest in Butte/Montana history and politics.
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