Rutherford B. Hayes and the Restoration of Presidential Powers
For years, scholars have dismissed Rutherford B. Hayes as an ineffective president. This work demolishes such conventional wisdom by showing that not only was Hayes’ presidency effective, but it was also groundbreaking in its restoration of presidential prerogatives.
When Hayes took office in 1877, Congress was taking an ever more decisive role in leading the nation. Hayes was up against a Democratic-controlled legislature and antagonized Republican Party bosses. This work shows how Hayes overcame these forces to advance his agenda. He resisted the hostile congressional effort to keep federal troops in the South; reinstated the gold standard; instituted civil service reform; and ignored the clamor from congressmen beholden to railway magnates to involve the military in the Great Strike of 1877. Hayes’ triumph over these obstacles laid the foundation for the strong executive branch we know today.
Presidential Prestige will garner an eager audience of students, scholars, and members of the general public with an interest in American history. By focusing on primary sources such as personal letters, congressional records, and news media, this book adds a new dimension to the overall historiography of the late nineteenth century American political landscape.
Charles Quince is a librarian at the Albright Memorial Library in Scranton, Pennsylvania. He received a Master of Science in Library Science from the Clarion University of Pennsylvania and a Master of Arts in History from Norwich University, USA. He is a member of the American Historical Association, the National Coalition of Independent Scholars, and the American Society of International Law.
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