Though the US takes pride in the regular practice of peaceful transitions of power from one presidency to the next, sometimes the transition is not quite so peaceful, especially when the results are in dispute. Such was the case in the aftermath of the presidential election of 1876 where, for months, allegations flew back and forth, political leaders across the nation exerted their influence in favor of their chosen candidate, members of both parties prepared for armed confrontation, and no one could predict whether Samuel J Tilden or Rutherford B Hayes would end up being the nineteenth president of the United States. Source notes for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.
Featured Images: “Rutherford B Hayes” [c. 1865-1880], courtesy of Wikipedia and “Samuel Jones Tilden” [c. 1860-1886], courtesy of Wikipedia
Political partnerships are nothing new to American politics, but what happens when the domestic world and the political realm overlap? To examine that question and learn more about one of the most significant political partnerships in American history, I recently spoke with Thomas Balcerski, author of Bosom Friends: The Intimate World of James Buchanan and William Rufus King. In our conversation, Tom shared some great insights about the politics, ideologies, and society of antebellum America and not only how Buchanan and King fit in to all of that but what studying their lives and their relationship can tell us in turn about larger historical themes. Additional resources for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.
Featured Images: Dr. Thomas Balcerski, courtesy of the author, and “James Buchanan” by George Peter Alexander Healy [c. 1859], courtesy of Wikipedia
The nation had little time to process the news that Adams was defeated in his bid for reelection as a constitutional crisis developed regarding who would succeed him to the post. Meanwhile, the outgoing president only had a few weeks remaining to secure the ratification of the Convention of Mortefontaine, get several federal judges confirmed including a new Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and get a new Treasury Secretary in place. Sources used for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.
Featured Image: “Front View of the President’s House, in the City of Washington” [c.1807], courtesy of Wikipedia
Washington’s inauguration, while starting up the wheels of the executive branch, leaves many questions to be answered by the first chief executive and the new government. What titles will be used to address the president? How will he make himself available to the public and to the other branches of government? What does seeking “the Advice and Consent of the Senate” really mean anyway? So much of what we take for granted with the presidency nowadays is established in Washington’s first few months on the job, and these precedents that he established in the early part of his administration are the focus of this episode. Source information for this episode can be found at http://presidencies.blubrry.com.