Nellie Taft

Nellie Taft : The Unconventional First Lady of the Ragtime Era

3.78 (156 ratings by Goodreads)

List price: US$29.96

Currently unavailable

Add to wishlist

AbeBooks may have this title (opens in new window).

Try AbeBooks


From critically acclaimed presidential-family historian Carl Sferrazza Anthony comes the first biography of Helen Herron Taft, the unconventional wife of the twenty-seventh President of the United States who, in an era before Eleanor Roosevelt, was overt about her power and saw to it that her husband both aspired to, and won, the highest office in the land.

On the morning of William Howard Taft's inauguration, Nellie Taft publicly expressed that theirs would be a joint administration by shattering precedent and demanding that she ride alongside her husband down Pennsylvania Avenue, a seat previously held for the outgoing President. In addition to her passion for entertaining, this progressive First Lady was an advocate for higher education and partial suffrage for women, initiated legislation to improve working conditions for federal employees, and created Washington's famous grove of blossoming cherry trees. She smoked, drank, and gambled without regard to societal judgment. During Taft's time as the governor general of the Philippines, she broke racial and class boundaries. Nellie Taft's fate was ultimately bound to larger events, including the Titanic sinking and Teddy Roosevelt's creation of the Bull Moose Party.

Drawn from previously unpublished diaries, a lifetime of love letters between Will and Nellie, and detailed family correspondence and recollections, Anthony develops a riveting portrait of Nellie Taft as one of the strongest links in the series of women -- from Abigail Adams to Hillary Rodham Clinton -- often critically declared "co-Presidents."
show more

The Best Books of 2018

Check out the top books of the year on our page Best Books of 2018. Shop now .

Product details

  • Hardback | 534 pages
  • 154.9 x 228.6 x 38.1mm | 861.84g
  • United States
  • English
  • Illustrations, unspecified
  • 0060513829
  • 9780060513825

Looking for beautiful books?

Visit our Beautiful Books page and find lovely books for kids, photography lovers and more. Shop now .

Rating details

156 ratings
3.78 out of 5 stars
5 22% (35)
4 43% (67)
3 28% (44)
2 3% (5)
1 3% (5)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X