Review of “John Quincy Adams: Militant Spirit” by James Traub

Originally posted on My Journey Through the Best Presidential Biographies:
James Traub’s “John Quincy Adams: Militant Spirit” was published in 2016, about three years after I read four other biographies of the sixth president. Traub is a journalist and author who has written for The New Yorker, New York Times Magazine, The New York Post…

Book Review- Chernow’s Grant

Chernow, Ron, Grant, Penguin Press; 1st edition (October 10, 2017)      A hefty, yet easily digestible biography  continues the author’s attempts at re-imagining supposedly misunderstood figures.  The actual result is consensus history masquerading as newly discovered insight.    The success of his biography of Alexander Hamilton… and the subsequent musical it inspired, brought about unprecedentedContinue reading “Book Review- Chernow’s Grant”

Reparations Will Divide

The House of Representatives will conduct hearings on slavery reparations – an idea that was not feasible in 1868 and is even more calamitous now.   Advocates for reparations cannot produce a consensus on how the policy will take shape.  The hearings will try to make sense of the many demands. Ta-Nehisi Coates argues thatContinue reading “Reparations Will Divide”

Expunging Our Past

Progressive historians like Charles Beard… went to great lengths to discredit the work of America’s first published historian, George Bancroft.  The Nationalist school of American history revered our Founders and proclaimed American exceptionalism.  Beard argued that America’s founding ideals were nothing more than a clever disguise for our true inspiration, greed.  The New Left revisionismContinue reading “Expunging Our Past”

June 13, 1863: Second Battle of Winchester Begins

Originally posted on Almost Chosen People:
In order for Lee to invade the North it was necessary for the Shenandoah Valley to be cleared of Union troops that would otherwise could pose a threat to Richmond in the absence of Lee’s army.  Lee assigned the Second Corps, Jackson’s old veterans who were quite familiar with…

Cold Harbor Reconsidered

“I have always regretted that the last assault at Cold Harbor was ever made.”  – US Grant   With that observation in his best-selling memoir… Grant started the historical firestorm around the second-to-last battle of the Overland Campaign.  Through the years and volumes documenting every facet of the war, Cold Harbor has come to symbolizeContinue reading “Cold Harbor Reconsidered”

Selective Historical Outrage

We currently reside in the era of haughty self -worth and intellectual pretension.  Hubris drives academics, pundits, and journalists to question everything about our past, because anyone lacking our current sensibilities must be flawed and unworthy of our respect.  Slavery, racism, and sexism are unforgivable transgressions every person in history must be held accountable toContinue reading “Selective Historical Outrage”