By Paul Kahan
From abject poverty to undisputed political boss of Pennsylvania, Lincoln’s secretary of warfare, senator, chair of the Senate international family members Committee, and a founding father of the Republican get together, Simon Cameron (1799–1889) was one of many 19th century’s such a lot sought after political figures. In his wake, despite the fact that, he left a chain of questionable political and enterprise dealings and, on the age of 80, even a intercourse scandal.
excess of a biography of Cameron, Amiable Scoundrel is additionally a portrait of an period that allowed—indeed, encouraged—a guy equivalent to Cameron to grab political keep watch over. The political alterations of the early 19th century enabled him not just to enhance his prestige but additionally to exert actual political authority. The alterations brought on by the Civil conflict, in flip, allowed Cameron to consolidate his political authority right into a profitable, well-oiled political computing device. A key determine in designing and imposing the Union’s army approach in the course of the Civil War’s the most important first 12 months, Cameron performed a vital position in pushing Abraham Lincoln to allow the enlistment of African americans into the U.S. military, a stance that finally resulted in his compelled resignation. but his legacy has languished, approximately forgotten store for the truth that his identify has turn into shorthand for corruption, although no proof has ever been awarded to end up that Cameron used to be corrupt.
Amiable Scoundrel puts Cameron’s activities right into a better historic context via demonstrating that many politicians of the time, together with Abraham Lincoln, used related strategies to win elections and boost their careers. This learn is the interesting tale of Cameron’s lifestyles and an illuminating portrait of his times.
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Additional info for Amiable Scoundrel: Simon Cameron, Lincoln's Scandalous Secretary of War
Amiable Scoundrel: Simon Cameron, Lincoln's Scandalous Secretary of War by Paul Kahan