In the two hundred years since its inception, the U.S. presidency has survived controversy, scandal, resignation, civil war, and assassination. Every individual who has assumed the title of president has left a mark, for good or ill, on American history. "American Presidents" examines the strengths and weaknesses, the successes and failures of each Chief Executive. Designed as a companion to Salem's "American First Ladies, Second Edition" (2006), "American Presidents, Second Revised Edition" presents an essay on the life and administration of each U.S. president, in chronological order. In addition, an "Alphabetical List of Presidents" at the beginning of volume 1 helps readers find a particular entry. Each essay begins with ready reference information: name; administration number and years (e.g. "7th President, 1829-1837"); birth and death dates and locations; political party; vice presidents; and cabinet members by department. The text that follows offers a comprehensive portrait of the life and times of the president, from birth through political rise, election, term of office, defeat or retirement, and death. Topical subheadings help guide readers through the material.
The legacy of each administration is measured against the yardstick of U.S. history, and the evolution of the office and the country can be traced clearly. Every essay ends with an annotated bibliography and is signed by the author. New to this edition, every entry features at least two boxed sidebars, which are essays-within-essays: "The First Lady" and "The Vice Presidency." In some cases, more than one First Lady profile appears. Other textual sidebars reproduce primary documents - such as Thomas Jefferson's Declaration of Independence, the Monroe Doctrine, or Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation - and many entries offer excerpts from famous presidential speeches and other quotations. More than two hundred photographs complement the text.show more