Catalogue


Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's : three men, five great wines, and the evening that changed America /
Charles Cerami.
imprint
Hoboken, N.J. : Wiley, c2008.
description
x, 270 p. : ill. ; 25 cm.
ISBN
9780470083062 (acid-free paper)
format(s)
Book
More Details
imprint
Hoboken, N.J. : Wiley, c2008.
isbn
9780470083062 (acid-free paper)
contents note
Before the clash -- An old friend's bombshell -- The mounting anger -- The radical conservative -- Aggressive lobbying -- Thoughts of breaking up -- Jefferson's awakening -- A country without a capital -- Doubters and believers -- Nearing a decision on the capital -- That day on the street -- Dinner at Secretary Jefferson's -- The Philadelphia story -- Doubts settled, doubts revived -- Hamilton the unstoppable? -- Before the fall -- From brilliance to disaster -- The disappearing cabinet -- One heart and one mind -- The Jefferson factor -- Recipes from Monticello's kitchen -- Alexander Hamilton's letter to new coast guard officials.
catalogue key
6483946
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 257-259) and index.
A Look Inside
Excerpts
Flap Copy
The first United States Congress was in session and George Washington had just completed his first year as president when a sudden threat struck his office. It became clear that his two top aides-Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton-were starting a deadly feud. Their views of the country's future were appallingly different. Jefferson and his closest friend, James Madison, father of the Constitution, wanted the old thirteen states to keep many of their former powers while Hamilton insisted that the federal government be supreme. As new plans for the growing nation were being made, Jefferson and Madison opposed Hamilton's daring proposals at every turn. Washington warned them that their feud put the country in danger of collapsing. Jefferson was at the lowest point of his life, fighting headaches and depression. Could anything prevent these former Revolutionary allies from destroying the fledgling republic they had worked so hard to create? Yes! One very small, very perfect dinner party.In Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's, you'll discover a little-known and fascinating event in American history that settled two issues that inflamed the nation in a single compromise. The rapid results that flowed from this two-part agreement would bring the great American expansion to come. You'll meet three of the nation's most famous founding fathers, each already revered for his role in the Revolution and the founding of the Republic, and each a close adviser to President Washington: Thomas Jefferson, freshly arrived from Paris after five years as ambassador to France and newly installed as America's first secretary of state; James Madison, Jefferson's former prot_g_ and best friend, the driving force of the Constitutional Convention, now a member of Congress and an important unofficial member of the administration; and finally, Alexander Hamilton, war hero, Washington's favorite, and collaborator with Madison in writing the Federalist papers. Officially the secretary of the treasury, Hamilton was quietly involved in foreign affairs as well. Now Madison and Jefferson feared that he intended to turn the president into a king and appoint himself as Washington's successor.Author Charles Cerami offers insightful explanations of the issues that nearly tore the young nation apart and explains how Jefferson's years in Paris had shown him the role fine wines and delicious food could play in easing tense moments in difficult negotiations. Cerami's dazzling account of this elegant evening comes complete with detailed descriptions of the wines served and each course of the dinner-including recipes.It is impossible to imagine what America would have become without the often reluctant cooperation of these three great leaders. Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's offers a rare glimpse into the unique and unheralded evening that made that cooperation possible. It offers delightful and compelling reading for anyone interested in American history, politics, fine dining, or all of the above.
Flap Copy
The first United States Congress was in session and George Washington had just completed his first year as president when a sudden threat struck his office. It became clear that his two top aides-Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton-were starting a deadly feud. Their views of the country's future were appallingly different. Jefferson and his closest friend, James Madison, father of the Constitution, wanted the old thirteen states to keep many of their former powers while Hamilton insisted that the federal government be supreme. As new plans for the growing nation were being made, Jefferson and Madison opposed Hamilton's daring proposals at every turn. Washington warned them that their feud put the country in danger of collapsing. Jefferson was at the lowest point of his life, fighting headaches and depression. Could anything prevent these former Revolutionary allies from destroying the fledgling republic they had worked so hard to create? Yes! One very small, very perfect dinner party. In Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's, you'll discover a little-known and fascinating event in American history that settled two issues that inflamed the nation in a single compromise. The rapid results that flowed from this two-part agreement would bring the great American expansion to come. You'll meet three of the nation's most famous founding fathers, each already revered for his role in the Revolution and the founding of the Republic, and each a close adviser to President Washington: Thomas Jefferson, freshly arrived from Paris after five years as ambassador to France and newly installed as America's first secretary of state; James Madison, Jefferson's former prot_g_ and best friend, the driving force of the Constitutional Convention, now a member of Congress and an important unofficial member of the administration; and finally, Alexander Hamilton, war hero, Washington's favorite, and collaborator with Madison in writing the Federalist papers. Officially the secretary of the treasury, Hamilton was quietly involved in foreign affairs as well. Now Madison and Jefferson feared that he intended to turn the president into a king and appoint himself as Washington's successor. Author Charles Cerami offers insightful explanations of the issues that nearly tore the young nation apart and explains how Jefferson's years in Paris had shown him the role fine wines and delicious food could play in easing tense moments in difficult negotiations. Cerami's dazzling account of this elegant evening comes complete with detailed descriptions of the wines served and each course of the dinner-including recipes. It is impossible to imagine what America would have become without the often reluctant cooperation of these three great leaders. Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's offers a rare glimpse into the unique and unheralded evening that made that cooperation possible. It offers delightful and compelling reading for anyone interested in American history, politics, fine dining, or all of the above.
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 2007-10-22:
It was 1790, and Thomas Jefferson and one of his dinner guests, James Madison, were determined to work out a political compromise critical to the nation's future with their third dinner companion (and political opponent), Alexander Hamilton. This gathering around Jefferson's celebrated table involved nothing less than the creation of the young nation's finances, foreign relations and the eventual location of its capital. The dinner's results? An agreement that, Congress willing, the new government would assume the states' war debts, issue bonds to fund the national debt and make the Potomac's banks the capital's permanent site. Congress agreed. Cerami (Jefferson's Great Gamble) presents a fast-paced narrative of an event well-known but never told so brightly-nor at such unnecessary length. While Cerami puts the dinner-table agreement at his story's center, it was but one of a number of seismic events, acts and decisions of the 1790s. Cerami slights many of those when he's not giving us too much detail about other minor ones, such as Jefferson's cooking recipes and a short disquisition (and a long document) on Hamilton's role in the Coast Guard's founding. Compression would have made this inherently fascinating story pack the punch it should. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Appeared in Library Journal on 2008-02-01:
These books offer distinct perspectives and insights into public and private moments in the life of Thomas Jefferson, first U.S. secretary of state and third President-and one of the most fascinating figures in American history. Cerami (Jefferson's Great Gamble) offers a second work on Jefferson as perceptive and well written as his first. This time his focus is the long-standing personal and political feud between Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton, secretary of the Treasury. Fearing that tensions between them on issues such as agriculture versus industry, states' versus federal rights, and South versus North would destroy the new nation, Jefferson reluctantly saw that his country would survive only through compromise. It was 1790. He invited Hamilton and his own ally, James Madison (aware of the purpose of the evening), to a private dinner at his home, then in New York. Compromise was achieved, Jefferson and Madison agreeing not to oppose federal assumption of states' war debts, Hamilton agreeing to the national capital being constructed in northern Virginia. Cerami wittily recounts the evening in rich detail, embracing the culinary details as well as the larger story of President Washington's quarrelsome cabinet, the evolution of the dual party system, and Jefferson's emergence as a persuasive national leader. Crawford (Thunder on the Right) offers his own equally compelling look, in this case at Jefferson's life, post-presidency, from 1809 until his death in 1826. Then a private citizen, Jefferson was burdened by financial and personal and political struggles within his extended family. His beloved estate, Monticello, was costly to maintain and Jefferson was in debt. Newly studying primary sources, Crawford thoroughly conveys the pathos of Jefferson's last years, even as he successfully established the University of Virginia (America's first wholly secular university) and maintained contact with James Madison, John Adams, and other luminaries. He personally struggled with political, moral, and religious issues; Crawford shows us a complex, self-contradictory, idealistic, yet tragic figure, helpless to stabilize his family and finances. Historians and informed readers alike will find much to relish in both of these distinctive works of original scholarship. Both are recommended for academic and large public libraries. [For Crawford, see Prepub Alert, LJ 9/1/07.]-Douglas King, Univ. of South Carolina, Thomas Cooper Lib., Columbia (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Reviews
Review Quotes
"presents a fast-paced narrative of an event well-known but never told so brightly." ( Publishers Weekly , October 22, 2007)
"Cerami wittily recounts the evening in rich detail, embracing the culinary details as well as the larger story of President Washington's quarrelsome cabinet, the evolution of the dual party system, and Jefferson's emergence as a persuasive national leader." ( Library Journal , February 1, 2008) It was 1790, and Thomas Jefferson and one of his dinner guests, James Madison, were determined to work out a political compromise critical to the nation's future with their third dinner companion (and political opponent), Alexander Hamilton. This gathering around Jefferson's celebrated table involved nothing less than the creation of the young nation's finances, foreign relations and the eventual location of its capital. The dinner's results? An agreement that, Congress willing, the new government would assume the states' war debts, issue bonds to fund the national debt and make the Potomac's banks the capital's permanent site. Congress agreed. Cerami (Jefferson's Great Gamble) presents a fast-paced narrative of an event well-known but never told so brightly-nor at such unnecessary length. While Cerami puts the dinner-table agreement at his story's center, it was but one of a number of seismic events, acts and decisions of the 1790s. Cerami slights many of those when he's not giving us too much detail about other minor ones, such as Jefferson's cooking recipes and a short disquisition (and a long document) on Hamilton's role in the Coast Guard's founding. Compression would have made this inherently fascinating story pack the punch it should. (Feb.) ( Publishers Weekly , October 22, 2007)
* "Cerami wittily recounts the evening in rich detail, embracing the culinary details as well as the larger story of President Washington's quarrelsome cabinet, the evolution of the dual party system, and Jefferson's emergence as a persuasive national leader." ( Library Journal , February 1, 2008) It was 1790, and Thomas Jefferson and one of his dinner guests, James Madison, were determined to work out a political compromise critical to the nation's future with their third dinner companion (and political opponent), Alexander Hamilton. This gathering around Jefferson's celebrated table involved nothing less than the creation of the young nation's finances, foreign relations and the eventual location of its capital. The dinner's results? An agreement that, Congress willing, the new government would assume the states' war debts, issue bonds to fund the national debt and make the Potomac's banks the capital's permanent site. Congress agreed. Cerami (Jefferson's Great Gamble) presents a fast-paced narrative of an event well-known but never told so brightlynor at such unnecessary length. While Cerami puts the dinner-table agreement at his story's center, it was but one of a number of seismic events, acts and decisions of the 1790s. Cerami slights many of those when he's not giving us too much detail about other minor ones, such as Jefferson's cooking recipes and a short disquisition (and a long document) on Hamilton's role in the Coast Guard's founding. Compression would have made this inherently fascinating story pack the punch it should. (Feb.) ( Publishers Weekly , October 22, 2007)
This item was reviewed in:
Publishers Weekly, October 2007
Booklist, December 2007
Library Journal, February 2008
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
The Meal That Saved The Republic Only two guests were invited to what was arguably the most elegant, sumptuous, and important dinner party that Thomas Jefferson ever hosted. Each course was prepared and laid out in advance so that no servants would enter the dining room to disrupt conversation and overhear random remarks, which they might later repeat to others. Privacy was imperative. Jefferson believed that the very future of the United States of America depended on convincing Alexander Hamilton to agree to a compromise he and Madison were proposing on two surging issues that threatened to tear the young republic apart. Plying his guests with fine wine and exquisite cuisine that only a former ambassador to France could provide, Jefferson set the stage for a compromise that enabled the federal government to pay its debts, both domestic and foreign, and make the American dollar "as good as gold." In Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's, you'll discover the little-known story behind this pivotal evening in American history, complete with wine lists, recipes, and wonderful illustrations of 1790s New York, then the nation's capital. It is a feast not to be missed for lovers of American history, fine dining, and a compelling true story well told.
Main Description
The Constitution was two years old and the United States was in serious danger. Bitter political rivalry between former allies and two surging issues that inflamed the nation led to grim talk of breaking up the union. Then a single great evening achieved compromises that led to America's great expansion. This book celebrates Thomas Jefferson and his two guests, Alexander Hamilton and James Madison, and the meal that saved the republic. In Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's, you'll discover the little-known story behind this pivotal evening in American history, complete with wine lists, recipes, and more.
Bowker Data Service Summary
Charles Cerami recreates the dinner party that saved the union. It celebrates Thomas Jefferson and his two guests, Alexander Hamilton and James Madison, as well as the dinner itself - the courses, the wines, the nature of the conversation - and the rapid results that followed.
Back Cover Copy
The Meal That Saved The Republic Only two guests were invited to what was arguably the most elegant, sumptuous, and important dinner party that Thomas Jefferson ever hosted. Each course was prepared and laid out in advance so that no servants would enter the dining room to disrupt conversation and overhear random remarks, which they might later repeat to others. Privacy was imperative. Jefferson believed that the very future of the United States of America depended on convincing Alexander Hamilton to agree to a compromise he and Madison were proposing on two surging issues that threatened to tear the young republic apart. Plying his guests with fine wine and exquisite cuisine that only a former ambassador to France could provide, Jefferson set the stage for a compromise that enabled the federal government to pay its debts, both domestic and foreign, and make the American dollar "as good as gold." In Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's , you'll discover the little-known story behind this pivotal evening in American history, complete with wine lists, recipes, and wonderful illustrations of 1790s New York, then the nation's capital. It is a feast not to be missed for lovers of American history, fine dining, and a compelling true story well told.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Introductionp. 1
Before the Clashp. 3
An Old Friend's Bombshellp. 15
The Mounting Angerp. 27
The Radical Conservativep. 41
Aggressive Lobbyingp. 51
Thoughts of Breaking Upp. 61
Jefferson's Awakeningp. 75
A Country without a Capitalp. 85
Doubters and Believersp. 95
Nearing a Decision on the Capitalp. 107
That Day on the Streetp. 117
Dinner at Secretary Jefferson'sp. 125
The Philadelphia Storyp. 139
Doubts Settled, Doubts Revivedp. 149
Hamilton the Unstoppable?p. 159
Before the Fallp. 171
From Brilliance to Disasterp. 179
The Disappearing Cabinetp. 193
One Heart and One Mindp. 209
The Jefferson Factorp. 221
Recipes from Monticello's Kitchenp. 229
Alexander Hamilton's Letter to New Coast Guard Officersp. 239
Notesp. 245
Bibliographyp. 257
Indexp. 261
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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