The Generation of Abolition

Edward Coles was not a peer of Thomas Jefferson, yet misguided historians with a cultural axe to grind cite his actions as proof Thomas Jefferson failed mankind.

Jefferson was 43 years older than Coles, a man from another time and place.

The Virginia society which allowed Coles’s liberal views on slavery was largely crafted by the mind of Jefferson.

Jefferson explained the conundrum:

a good cause is often injured more by ill timed efforts of it’s friends than by the arguments of it’s enemies. persuasion, perseverance, and patience are the best advocates on questions depending on the will of others. the revolution in public opinion which this case requires, is not to be expected in a day, or perhaps in an age. but time, which outlives all things, will outlive this evil also. my sentiments have been 40 years before the public. had I repeated them 40 times, they would only have become the more stale and thread-bare. altho I shall not live to see them consummated, they will not die with me. but living or dying they will ever be in my most fervent prayers. “

Hemings Exhibit and Monticello

Somewhere between conjecture, history, rumor, and slander rests the new Sally Hemings exhibit at Monticello.

Bowing to the expediency of popular opinion and political correctness, the Jefferson foundation has cast off the duties and rigors of debate, context, and scholarly methods.

The exhibit is built around a long debunked interview given by Madison Hemings in 1873. Voluminous studies have scrutinized the self-serving memoir, yet the Jefferson Foundation presents it as fact.

This is in keeping with the current trend of passing conjecture as historical fact. It should be noted that the descendants of Madison Hemings refused to participate in the 1998 DNA study published by Nature magazine.

Such efforts may well likely fan the flames of historical discord at a time when misguided passions are leading us closer to iconoclasm.

What is Political Courage?

Momentum toward impeachment hearings continues to grow in the halls of Congress….

Political critics of the President are targeting House Democrats(including the Speaker) who refuse to publicly call for hearings. 

Pundits, eager for readership, attempt to recall impeachments past as evidence of political courage. –  **only in 1974 and 1868.  1999 was a gross overreach of Congressional power, for some reason. ?


Historians are getting involved in the debate- citing the historical necessities of the 1974 and 1868 impeachment proceedings.  Opponents were obviously partisan hacks lacking in political courage. Edmund G. Ross is the obvious target from 1868- historian David Greenberg called him a “scoundrel.”


What did Ross actually think about impeaching the President of the United States?

“Conditions may, and are not unlikely to arise, some day, when the exercise of the power to impeach and remove the President may be quite as essential to the preservation of our political system as it threatened to become in this instance destructive of that system. Should that day ever come, it is to be hoped that the remedy of impeachment, as established by the Constitution, may be as patriotically, as fearlessly, and as unselfishly applied as it was on this occasion rejected”**



** Ross was ostracized by the radicals in his party and voted out of office two years later.

Truman on VE Day


“This is a solemn but a glorious hour. I only wish that Franklin D. Roosevelt had lived to witness this day. General Eisenhower informs me that the forces of Germany have surrendered to the United Nations. The flags of freedom fly over all Europe.

For this victory, we join in offering our thanks to the Providence which has guided and sustained us through the dark days of adversity. Our rejoicing is sobered and subdued by a supreme consciousness of the terrible price we have paid to rid the world of Hitler and his evil band. Let us not forget, my fellow Americans, the sorrow and the heartache, which today abide in the homes of so many of our neighbors–neighbors whose most priceless possession has been rendered as a sacrifice to redeem our liberty.

We can repay the debt which we owe to our God, to our dead and to our children only by work–by ceaseless devotion to the responsibilities which lie ahead of us. If I could give you a single watchword for the coming months, that word is–work, work, and more work.

We must work to finish the war. Our victory is but half-won. The West is free, but the East is still in bondage to the treacherous tyranny of the Japanese. When the last Japanese division has surrendered unconditionally, then only will our fighting be done.”

Slavery Caused Secession

Neo-secessionists and revisionists struggle uselessly to blame the Civil War… on Federal overreach, inequitable tariffs, and outmoded economic theory- they fail to see the forest for the trees.  The historical record settles matters plainly and without ambiguity.

Future Confederate Vice-President Alexander Stephens delivered the clearest, most definitive explanation… for secession and the existence of a Confederate State.  Less than three weeks following Lincoln’s inauguration, Stephens defiantly declared to the nation:



“Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid, its corner- stone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition. This, our new government, is the first, in the history of the world, based upon this great physical, philosophical, and moral truth. This truth has been slow in the process of its development, like all other truths in the various departments of science. It has been so even amongst us. Many who hear me, perhaps, can recollect well, that this truth was not generally admitted, even within their day. The errors of the past generation still clung to many as late as twenty years ago.”

George Washington and British POWs

Almost Chosen People

George Washington was a humane man, but he had his limits.  When he learned that American prisoners of war were being mistreated by the British, he wrote to General Thomas Gage, the commander of the British forces in Boston, this letter on August 11, 1775:

Sir: I understand that the Officers engaged in the Cause of Liberty and their Country, who by the Fortune of War have fallen into your Hands, have been thrown, indiscriminately, into a common Gaol appropriated for Felons; That no Consideration has been had for those of the most respectable Rank, when languishing with Wounds, and Sickness; that some have been even amputated, in this unworthy Situation.

    Let your Opinion, Sir, of the Principle which Actuates them, be what it may, they suppose they act from the noblest of all Principles, a Love of Freedom, and their Country: But political Opinions I conceive are foreign…

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Chet Arthur, Tiffany and the 19-Year Screen

Presidential History Blog

The dapper and fastidious Chester Alan Arthur

No question about it, the White House receives a great deal of wear and tear.

Chester A. Arthur: Accidental President

New York politician Chester Alan Arthur

Few people would have ever believed that Chester Alan Arthur, New York “spoilsman” politician, would ever have become President of the USA. Only a few years earlier, his name had been linked to corruption at the Customs House in the Port of New York. While CAA’s personal honesty was vindicated, huge graft and malfeasance had been committed on his watch. He was summarily dismissed.

Nevertheless, he had been, and continued to be, a wealthy attorney and politician. Following the political scandals in the Grant Administration, the Republican party imploded into various factions, and Arthur’s name was eventually floated as an accommodation to mend said factional fences. A Vice Presidency was an insignificant office throughout the 19th

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