William Henry Harrison : A Political Biography by Dorothy Burne Goebel

Read: Nov 29 - Dec 9
Source: Public Library - ILL
Category: Overflow - Histories/Biographies
Pages: 380

William Henry Harrison was the man who held that office for the shortest period of time, just one month. This is what most people know about this man. Because of this fact, there are few books about this man's life, he is, it seems just a mere mention in other histories.

Most people, besides his short term in office, also remember that he was the "hero" of the battle of Tippecanoe (the presidential campaign slogan was "Tippecanoe and Tyler too"). He served as the governor of the Indiana Territory due to partisanship appointment during the Madison administration which led to this battle. The Battle of Tippecanoe truly didn't have much of an impact on the War of 1812 but did bring Harrison to the forefront since he was so arrogant when he refused to serve under General Winchester and insisted on command. "As a soldier, he was never taken off his guard, and his nerve never failed him; the victories of Tippecanoe and the Thames will always stand to his credit." However, "he was prone to rest content with a single victory when he should have pressed on toward the successful conclusion of the war."

As a legislator, Harrison worked in the House of Representatives and Senate for the betterment of the lot of army officers and enlisted to prevent the amount of men who deserted. He disliked the political process but it was not beyond him to use political connections to better his own standing. "He desired public offices and frankly sought them, in office he did his best, but he lacked the powers of a Calhoun, a Clay, or a Webster."

After his election, his one month in office was spent in a round of celebratory parties and ranglings over Cabinet positions.This book was detailed with the events of Harrison's life but lack details on the issues of the times which led to his election. It mainly dealt with the political process.This book is "a true picture of a man as he was - kindly, courteous, brave and cheerful, endeared to his family and his friends."

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