- Series: Reconstructing America (Book 1)
- Paperback: 252 pages
- Publisher: Fordham University Press; 1 edition (February 1, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0823219232
- ISBN-13: 978-0823219230
- Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 0.6 x 5.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,670,103 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Impeachment of a President: Andrew Johnson, the Blacks, and Reconstruction (Reconstructing America) 1st Edition
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". . . lucid, scholarly, tightly written. . . . Trefousse's analysis is often subtle and compelling." -- The Journal of American History
"Hans Trefousse . . . strengthens our understanding of Andrew Johnson and his presidency appreciably in this well-knit argumentative book. . . . Recommended in tandem." -- The Annals of the American Academy
"[Trefousse] . . . writes smoothly, clearly and interestingly. . . . His argument is convincing." -- The Journal of Southern History
From the Publisher
There are few Presidents of the United States whose historical image has changed more frequently than that of Andrew Johnson. In the immediate aftermath of the Civil War and Reconstruction, he was considered inept and stubborn. After some time, however, Reconstruction was no longer seen as a holy crusade, and Johnson's reputation began to improve. By the 1920's, Johnson had become a great hero who had courageously defended the Constitution against unprincipled radicals. But as circumstances changed again and racial problems were once more weighing upon America's conscience, the seventeenth President's achievements began to appear more questionable. Perhaps he had not been so admirable after all; perhaps his stubborn resistance to radical demands for black suffrage merited disapprobation rather than praise. His portrait was tarnished a second time. Not only was he now labeled a racist, but an inept politician as well.
In Impeachment of a President: Andrew Johnson, the Blacks, and Reconstruction, Trefousse paints a portrait of Johnson as a man who was honest, stubborn, and certain of the justice of his cause. Trefousse argues that Johnson was not the man to inch from the implications of decisions which might interfere temporarily with his long-range aims. Often alienating potential allies, he could have probably achieved more had he cooperated with moderate republicans. In part, he might even have realized his white supremacist aims. But once he had made his decision, once he had refused to come to terms with the moderates, his subsequent actions were not illogical. His policy may not the most intelligent-he was no political genius-but it was not wholly unsuccessful.