Catalogue


At Lincoln's side : John Hay's Civil War correspondence and selected writings /
edited by Michael Burlingame.
imprint
Carbondale : Southern Illinois University Press, c2000.
description
xxvii, 294 p.
ISBN
0809322935 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Carbondale : Southern Illinois University Press, c2000.
isbn
0809322935 (cloth : alk. paper)
catalogue key
3663817
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Michael Burlingame is a professor of history at Connecticut College.
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2001-05-01:
Once of the most distinguished public servants ever to grace the American political arena, John Milton Hay began his long career in public service as assistant personal secretary to Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War and ended it as one of the nation's most illustrious secretaries of state during the presidencies of William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt. In this splendid anthology of Hay's letters written during the war and later writings pertaining to Lincoln and the conflict, renowned Lincoln scholar Burlingame (Connecticut College) includes Hay's insightful personal correspondence, letters he drafted for Lincoln's signature (including his celebrated 1864 lament to the devious Widow Bixby), and selected essays and biographical sketches. Appending this delightful volume are Burlingame's previous essays on the authorship of the Bixby letter and the unethical White House conduct of Mary Todd Lincoln, including wholesale thefts sure to inspire parallels between the country's greate st and latest presidencies. As might be expected, once again Burlingame has produced a volume of immense value to Lincoln scholars and to upper-division undergraduate and graduate students of American history. R. A. Fischer emeritus, University of Minnesota--Duluth
Reviews
Review Quotes
"John Hay's sharp eye, facile pen, and luminous wit made him an impressive correspondent at any period of his life but especially so when he lived intimately in President Abraham Lincoln's White House. Every scrap of Hay's writing during the Civil War, whether unbuttoned or official, is invaluable to understanding a tumultuous period, which Hay observed from its very center."John Y. Simon, editor,The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant
"John Hay's sharp eye, facile pen, and luminous wit made him an impressive correspondent at any period of his life but especially so when he lived intimately in President Abraham Lincoln's White House. Every scrap of Hay's writing during the Civil War, whether unbuttoned or official, is invaluable to understanding a tumultuous period, which Hay observed from its very center."-- John Y. Simon , editor, The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant
"This is one of the most significant primary sources . . . dealing with Abraham Lincoln. Hay was intimately involved in many of the events of the Lincoln administration and the president treated him almost like a son. . . . No serious study of Lincoln can ignore Hay."Thomas R. Turner, author ofBeware the People Weeping: Public Opinion and the Assassination of Abraham Lincoln
"This is one of the most significant primary sources . . . dealing with Abraham Lincoln. Hay was intimately involved in many of the events of the Lincoln administration and the president treated him almost like a son. . . . No serious study of Lincoln can ignore Hay."-- Thomas R. Turner , author of Beware the People Weeping: Public Opinion and the Assassination of Abraham Lincoln
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, May 2001
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Main Description
John Hay believed that "real history is told in private letters," and the more than 220 surviving letters and telegrams from his Civil War days prove that to be true, showing Abraham Lincoln in action: "The Tycoon is in fine whack. I have rarely seen him more serene & busy. He is managing this war, the draft, foreign relations, and planning a reconstruction of the Union, all at once. I never knew with what tyrannous authority he rules the Cabinet, till now. The most important things he decides & there is no cavil." Along with Hay's personal correspondence, Burlingame includes his surviving official letters. Though lacking the "literary brilliance of [Hay's] personal letters," Burlingame explains, "they help flesh out the historical record." Burlingame also includes some of the letters Hay composed for Lincoln's signature, including the celebrated letter of condolence to the Widow Bixby. More than an inside glimpse of the Civil War White House, Hay's surviving correspondence provides a window on the world of nineteenth-century Washington, D.C.
Unpaid Annotation
Michael Burlingame provides the third (and the most complete and scholarly) edition of John Hay's Civil War letters. Hey believed that "real history is told in private letters", and the 220 surviving letters and telegrams from his Civil War days prove that to be true, showing President Lincoln in action: "The Tycoon is in fine whack. I have rarely seen him more serene & busy. He is managing this war, the draft, foreign relations, and planning a reconstruction of the Union, all at once. I never knew with what tyrannous authority he rules the Cabinet, till now. The most important things he decides & there is no cavil".Along with Hay's personal correspondence, Burlingame includes his surviving official letters. Though lacking the "literary brilliance of (Hay's) personal letters", Burlingame explain's, "they help flesh out the historical record, supplementing Roy P. Basler's edition of Lincoln's collected works". Burlingame also includes some of the letters Hay composed for Lincoln's signature, including the,celebrated Letter of Condolence to the Widow Bixby. Also collected here are obituaries of Tad Lincoln and others and previously unpublished lecture, "The Heroic Age in Washington".
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Introductionp. xi
Civil War Correspondence
1860-1862p. 3
1863p. 29
1864-1865p. 72
Selected Writings
Hay's Reminiscences of the Civil Warp. 109
Letter to William H. Herndon (1866)p. 109
Obituary of Tad Lincoln (1871)p. 111
The Heroic Age in Washington (1872)p. 113
Life in the White House in the Time of Lincoln (1890)p. 131
Biographical Sketchesp. 141
Elmer E. Ellsworth (1861)p. 141
Edward D. Baker (1861)p. 151
The Authoriship of the Bixby Letterp. 169
Mary Todd Lincoln's Unethical Conduct as First Ladyp. 185
Notesp. 205
Indexp. 281
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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