A Guide to the Study of the United States of America


J. Theodore Roosevelt to Wilson (1901–21)

3452. Barck, Oscar Theodore, and Nelson Manfred Blake. Since 1900, a history of the United States in our times. Rev. ed. New York, Macmillan, 1952. 903 p. illus. 52–2595 E741.B34 1952

First published in 1947.

"Suggestions for further reading": p. 861–885. A textbook emphasizing the historical development of problems currently important to this country. Although ample treatment is accorded to social and cultural trends in America, more space is devoted to the two most impressive lines of development: "the steady expansion of the functions of government to deal with the complex problems of a new age and the increasing involvement of the United States in global politics." The authors see three significant tendencies of the last 50 years: a nation largely indifferent to international affairs has been pushed by events into a position of dominant power in world affairs; it has been compelled not merely to defend democracy as a way of government and life but to reexamine its own institutions in the light of the democratic ideal; and its capitalist system has been put to the acid test of having to provide security and economic well-being for the whole people. There is still no cause for complacency: if wealth, productivity, and the general standard of living have soared, if education, good literature, music, and art have never been so accessible, national and international problems have grown even faster, and in greater complexity and difficulty than ever before.

3453. Bowers, Claude G. Beveridge and the progressive era [Boston] Houghton Mifflin, 1932. xxiv, 610 p. illus. 32–22530 E748.B48B6. Bibliography: p. [591]–593.

The well-documented political biography of a man who began his career as a Hamiltonian Republican but whose practical experience as a legislator carried him into the Progressive ranks. Beveridge (1862–1927) was at first a conservative nationalist, hostile to demagogy, and a believer in the obligations and the self-restraint of power. His dominant passion, Mr. Bowers believes, was for an imperialist national policy, expanding trade through colonialism; his consuming ambition, a leap from private life in Indiana to the United States Senate, which feat he accomplished in 1898. By 1905, however, Beveridge "had discovered that bigness and power do not necessarily make for the good of humanity." When he triumphed over the packers in 1906 with the passage of his meat inspection bill, he took "a long strike forward as a progressive and compromised some of his old relationships." Thereafter, he was engaged more and more in progressive battles for domestic reforms and "was moving into conflict with the major forces of his party"; he consistently supported Roosevelt, and was one of the insurgents under Taft. A Progressive in1912, "he was passionately in earnest about creating a great party, liberal according to his lights," says the author, "and he saw no hope in the party he had left." Unable to regain office, he devoted his later years to his monumental Life of John Marshall (q. v.) and an unfinished study of Lincoln.

3454. Clark, John Maurice. The costs of the World War to the American people. New Haven, Yale University Press, for the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1931. 316 p. ([Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Division of Economics and History. Economic and social history of the World War. American series]) 31–28596 HC56.C33, no. 3 D635.C553

An analysis of the costs of World War I to the United States wherein the fiscal allocations "are regarded as of little significance in themselves, their chief importance being as evidence of the outpouring of goods, the diversions of productive power from peace to war uses, and the sacrifices of the people, all of which constitute the more important realities behind the various sums of money which serve to call them forth." Professor Clark considers such matters as the nature of fiscal outlays for the war, how they were financed by the Federal, State, and local governments, or private organizations, and the effects of the war on manpower, agriculture, and industry. He estimates "the real social outlays for prosecuting the war" at 32 billion dollars, broken down by years thus: 1917, 6 billions; 1918, 16 billions; 1919, 9 billions; and 1920, 1 billion. At the time of writing (1931), he had concluded that the postwar prosperity, highest in the Nation’s history, was higher than it would have been had there been no war, that the Great Depression cut deeper, and that the effect of the war in so deepening the depression outweighed its effect in heightening the boom.

3455. Goldman, Eric F. Rendezvous with destiny; a history of modern American reform. New York, Knopf, 1952. xiii, 503, xxxvii p. 52–6418 E661.G58

A lively history of the reform movements that culminated in the Wilson administration and, after the reaction of the 1920’s, the New Deal, emphasizing the ideas of the reformers and the influence which these ideas exerted in subsequent developments. Since these movements are interpreted as reactions to a rapidly industrializing and urbanizing America, the narrative begins with the late 1860’s, when these factors were becoming dominant, and the first reformers in Mr. Goldman’s procession are therefore the patrician liberals of the Tilden school, who wanted a government "which the best people of this country will be proud of." After the episodes of the Georgists, the Farmers’ Alliance, and the Populists, all currents run together in the Progressive movement of the early 20th century. Thus early emerged the recurrent dilemma of the progressives, which bewilders individuals as well as parties: should freedom of enterprise be restored by creating conditions of fair and equal opportunity, or should big business be accepted as inevitable and controlled by big or bigger government? These and other issues are conducted down to an open present, in a narrative in which social circumstances, liberal thought, and political action are nicely balanced, and which is sometimes quite individual in interpretation, but always thoroughly documented.

3456. Hechler, Kenneth W. Insurgency; personalities and politics of the Taft era. New York, Columbia University Press, 1940. 252 p. (Columbia University. Faculty of Political Science. Studies in history, economics and public law, no. 470) 40–33640 H31.C7, no. 470 E761.H462

Issued also as thesis (Ph.D.) Columbia University.

Bibliography: p. 227–248.

A history of the predominantly agrarian group of Republicans in Congress, who in 1909, inspired by the crusading spirit of Theodore Roosevelt, arose in rebellion against the reactionary "regulars." In the House of Representatives, the author notes, some 25 insurgents regularly fought the personal dictatorship of Speaker Cannon, and, at the high tide of insurgency, March 19, 1910, "rallied forty-two Republicans to join the Democrats in passing a resolution that stripped the Speaker of most of his personal power." Dr. Hechler names among the leaders George W. Norris of Nebraska, Edmond H. Madison and Victor Murdock of Kansas, John M. Nelson of Wisconsin, Miles Poindexter of Washington, Charles A. Lindbergh, Sr., of Minnesota, and Charles N. Fowler of New Jersey. The insurgents of the Senate strayed from the Republican position on a number of issues: revision of the tariff, which first split party solidarity in the special session of 1909; taxes; conservation; postal savings banks; railroad rate regulation; and reciprocity. In breadth of ideas and courage, the author believes, Robert M. La Follette of Wisconsin had no equal; also of importance, however, were Senators Moses E. Clapp of Minnesota, Albert B. Cummins and Jonathan P. Dolliver of Iowa, Joseph L. Bristow of Kansas, and Albert J. Beveridge of Indiana.

3457. Hibben, Paxton. The peerless leader, William Jennings Bryan. New York, Farrar & Rinehart, 1929. xvi, 446 p. illus. 29–24634 E664.B87H6

"The first twenty-one chapters … were completed by Paxton Hibben before his untimely death. The book as it stands was completed by C. Hardey Grattan."—p. [v].

Bibliography: p. 409–419.

A not uncritical interpretative biography of Bryan (1860–1925), which relates its subject to the intellectual, social, political, and economic milieu of his day. He is seen as "the perfect product" of the American Middle West, "where sentimentality took the place of knowledge and evangelism was the motive force of action." In the heyday of brass bands and torchlight political parades, "an era when oratory was all a man required to attain to any exalted position," Bryan possessed the equipment of the perfect orator. Yet victory was not in Bryan nor of him, Mr. Hibben maintains; even the Cross of Gold speech that won him the Democratic Presidential nomination in 1896 was defensive. "William Jennings Bryan was of those meek who may inherit but will never conquer the earth." More than a politician seeking votes, he "was the evangelist of a new hope for the helpless and disinherited," a hope which lay not in patient resignation but in self-help through political action. The Great Commoner, thrice defeated nominee for the Presidency, and Secretary of State under Wilson, 1913–15, became a symbol of "emotional Democracy."

3458. Hofstadter, Richard. The age of reform; from Bryan to F. D. R. New York, Knopf, 1955. 328 p. 54–7206 E743.H63

This analysis postulates that reform has set the tone of American politics for the better part of the 20th century. "The reform movements of the past sixty-five years fall readily into three main episodes, the first two of which are almost continuous with each other: the agrarian uprising that found its most intense expression in the Populism of the 1890’s and the Bryan campaign of 1896; the Progressive movement, which extended from about 1900 to 1914; and the New Deal, whose dynamic phase was concentrated in a few years of the 1930’s." Professor Hofstadter’s attention centers upon the ideas of the participants in these movements: their concepts of what was wrong, the changes they sought, and the techniques they found desirable. He is concerned with their most characteristic thinking as found in "middlebrow writers," the popular magazines, muckraking reports, campaign speeches, and articles by representative journalists and influential publicists. The author stresses and criticizes the Yankee-Protestant ethos of responsibility in Populist-Progressive thinking, the "notion that it is both possible and desirable to moralize private life through public action." He regards the New Deal as a drastic new departure in American reformism, principally in its experimental and managerial approach to problems of economic recovery and social welfare.

3459. Jessup, Philip C. Elihu Root. New York, Dodd, Mead, 1938. 2 v. illus. 38–31598 E664.R7J5

"Sources and bibliography": v. 2, p. 507–520; "Chronological list of the principal public speeches and papers of Elihu Root": v. 2, p. 521–552.

Based upon interviews with Root, as well as family papers and other sources, this is a massive biography of the Republican lawyer and statesman (1845–1937). His practice in the years 1865–99, and after his retirement from the Senate in 1915, consisted mainly of cases connected with large corporations and the municipal government of New York. He is here characterized as a man of scientific and detached mind, a master of detail, and an able trial lawyer. Identified with Republican reform elements, Root believed in party regularity as a practical means to political ends, but was always ready to fight the machine on matters of principle. Professor Jessup describes Root’s battles against political influence, inertia, personal jealousies, and self–interest, as well as his creation of the General Staff and the Army War College, during his service as Secretary of War under McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt (1899–1904). As Roosevelt’s Secretary of State 1905–9), Root, in the author’s opinion, proved "the possibility of practical altruism" toward Latin America. Ever devoted to the principle of peaceful arbitration, Root adopted a policy of patience, caution, and friendliness toward all. Professor Jessup considers his greatest diplomatic triumph the settlement of the longstanding Newfoundland fisheries dispute.

3460. Josephson, Matthew. The President makers; the culture of politics and leadership in an age of enlightenment, 1896–1919. New York, Harcourt, Brace, 1940. 584 p. 40–33441 E712.J68

"Sources": p. 567–571.

The years 1896–1919 produced in this country not only a cultivated and socially-minded political era, but also a whole gallery of remarkable and diverse leaders who controlled the national party organizations and were, in effect, "President Makers." Mr. Josephson views this period as "the flowering of America’s imperial age," and Mark Hanna, "Maker" of President McKinley, as the most important link between large business interests and professional politics. Among younger men and the literati, on the other hand, the author finds a sense of special duty as well as special privilege. Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson "demanded on the part of the rich capitalists who so often supported their campaigns both self-denial and self-control." Progressives like the elder La Follette and Louis D. Brandeis "required of the citizens an alert public conscience, a growing knowledge of public affairs, and readiness to intervene intelligently at almost every point of the governing process." Mr. Josephson sees Theodore Roosevelt’s Square Deal and Wilson’s New Freedom as the true precursors of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal, calls the Taft administration "an attempted ’Restoration,’" and dismisses the decade of Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover as "a miscarried ’Restoration.’"

3461. La Follette, Belle (Case) and Fola La Follette. Robert M. La Follette, June 14, 1855–June 18, 1925. Chapters I–XXVI by Belle Case La Follette and chapters XXVII–LXXII by Fola La Follette. New York, Macmillan, 1953. 2 v. (xx, 1305 p.) illus. 53–13106 E664.L16L13. Bibliography: v. 2, p. 1233–1253.

A warmly written, extensively documented family biography of Senator Robert M. La Follette of Wisconsin, begun by his widow and completed by his daughter. Born in a log cabin and associated in his youth with sturdy, courageous pioneer folk, La Follette, in his daughter’s estimation, early acquired the enduring faith in the plain people that "was the compelling force throughout his many years of public service." He is depicted here as a man who took the issues directly to the voters, who won a place in the front ranks of the Republican Party, and who, in 1897, began his long educational campaign in Wisconsin for direct primaries, railroad regulation, tax reform, conservation, and other measures which were enacted during his tenure as Governor, 1900–1905. In his long service as a United States Senator, his daughter points out, La Follette was nominally a Republican but steadily pursued an independent course. He staunchly supported many of Wilson’s domestic and some of his foreign policies but, as an isolationist, he voted against the entry of the United States into World War I. Miss La Follette makes it clear that her father ran as an independent rather than a Progressive Party candidate for the Presidency in 1924.

3462. Mock, James R., and Cedric Larson. Words that won the war; the story of the Committee on Public Information, 1917–1919. Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1939. xvi, 372 p. illus. 39–27871 D632.M64. Bibliography included in "Notes" (p. [347]–356).

Based on personal interviews with former members as well as intensive study of the files of the so-called Creel Committee of World War I, this history of its activities offers an illustration of war propaganda at work. The Committee on Public Information, a "propaganda ministry" set up by executive order on April 13, 1917, displayed "vigor, effectiveness, and creative imagination, in encouraging and then consolidating the revolution of opinion which changed the United States from anti-militaristic democracy to an organized war machine." Composed of journalists, scholars, press agents, editors, artists, and other manipulators of the symbols of public opinion, working in all media of communication, this "gargantuan advertising agency" sought to mobilize public thinking and emotion on behalf of the Wilson program and "to make it seem like something worth dying for." George Creel, committee chairman, deserves censure for impetuosity and "horseback decisions," in the authors’ opinion, but should be credited for maintaining what freedom of the press there was. The senior author’s Censorship, 1917 (Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1941. 250 p.) shows how very little freedom of any sort remained. In times of crisis from the American Revolution onward, liberties have always been curtailed to some degree, especially freedom of speech and of the press, but only with the advent of World War I were all guaranteed rights abrogated save those to property. He describes in some detail these contraventions of liberty: censorship of the press, dispatches, wireless, cable, telegraph, and mail under supervision of the Censorship Board; and of newspapers, magazines, books, motion pictures, and public speech under the Department of Justice.

3463. Paxson, Frederic L. American democracy and the World War. Boston, Houghton Mifflin, 1936–48. 3 v. illus. 36–21132 D619.P42

Volume 3 has imprint: Berkeley, University of California Press.

CONTENTS.—1. Pre-war years 1913–1917.—2. America at war, 1917–1918.—3. Postwar years: normalcy, 1918–1923.

A history of the United States, 1913–23, which includes socioeconomic aspects within a firm political framework. It was, on the whole, a younger generation rather than the Democratic Party, the author maintains, that took control of the Nation’s affairs in 1913. "The real problem of democratic society was to determine how far it could go to keep the peace among conflicting interests. And for Democracy, as a political entity, it was a challenge whether it could step from minority to majority, from inexperience to responsibility, and deliver satisfaction where the Republican Party of McKinley, Roosevelt, and Taft had failed." The author regards as impressive the program of domestic legislation enacted in 1913 and 1914: the Underwood-Simmons Tariff, Federal Reserve Act, Federal Trade Commission Act, and Clayton Anti-Trust Act.

Wilson wanted no war and in fact desired a peace consistent with national safety and self-respect, but by 1916 was "desperate in his belief that unless the world could be brought to peace the United States would be driven to war." The American participation in World War I (1917–18) is regarded by Professor Paxson as an important chapter in the history of democracy in action, when a great nation with its mind finally made up acted with speed, directness, and reasonable efficiency in marshaling its resources, went wholeheartedly into combat 3000 miles away, forestalled a German victory, and marched home "carrying no plunder and asking none." He finds the retreat to "normalcy," begun in 1918 with the election of a Republican Congress and completed in 1920 by the election of a Republican President, as much a part of democracy as the wartime single-mindedness, although he deplores the lack of program, authority, and pattern at a time when preparation for peace was as imperative as winning the war had been.

3464. Pringle, Henry F. The life and times of William Howard Taft; a biography. New York, Farrar & Rinehart, 1939. 2 v. (1106 p.) illus. 39–27878 E762.P75. Bibliography: v. 2, p. 1083–1086.

"Authorized but not official," this is a moderately critical biography of William Howard Taft (1857–1930), based chiefly upon his private and official papers. Taft, a Republican, is pictured here as a man of peace, conservative, kindly, of judicial rather than political temper. He spent the greater part of his career in public life; rising through judicial offices, the Governor-Generalship of the Philippines and the Secretaryship of War, to serve from 1909 to 1913 as President of the United States, and from 1921 to 1930 as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. Taft’s worship of the law and strict construction of the executive power are emphasized, as are his "lifelong ineptitude in the complicated art of politics," and his inability to win public support for his measures or to popularize his accomplishments. The author credits Taft as President with the creation of a postal savings system and the initiation of a corporate income tax, and the advocacy of reciprocal trade agreements and civil service reforms; he deprecates Taft’s discrimination against the congressional insurgents, his small knowledge of the problems of labor, industry or finance, and his "dollar diplomacy." That Taft, as Chief Justice, "was conservative, if not reactionary, in his political and social views is," in Mr. Pringle’s view, "not open to question."

3465. Roosevelt, Theodore. Letters. Selected and edited by Elting E. Morison; John M. Blum, associate editor. Cambridge, Harvard University Press, 1951–54. 8 v. illus. 51–10037 E757.R7958

CONTENTS.—v. 1–2. The years of preparation, 1868–1900.—v. 3–4. The Square Deal, 1901–1905.—v. 5–6. The Big Stick, 1905–1909.—v. 7–8. The days of Armageddon, 1909–1919.

A selection of not quite 10,000 from the estimated 100,000 available letters of Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919), most of them in the Library of Congress, intended to make readily accessible to historians those which seem necessary to reveal his thought and action "in all the major and many of the minor undertakings of his public and private life." Arranged chronologically, the letters selected are printed in their entirety. Purely routine and repetitive correspondence has been eliminated. Correspondence connected with the secondary and tertiary pursuits of this public figure who was also naturalist, historian, rancher, man of letters, and explorer, have been chosen to indicate only the continuity and depth of his concerns. Far more inclusive is the material concerning politics, especially letters about significant events such as the Anthracite Strike of 1902 and the battle over the Hepburn Act in 1906, or suggestive minor episodes, such as the disposition in 1902 of the Church lands in the Philippines. Letters about continuing issues—the tariff, state political organizations, the Indians, the fencing of Western lands—are included if they show developments or shifts in policy. Also included are letters dealing with applications of policy to specific cases, if they are representative, as in the administration of the Five Civilized Tribes and of the Panama Canal, or if they possess unusual intrinsic interest, as in the case of the Warren Livestock Company. The editors have provided many brief notes, mostly identifications of addressees or persons mentioned in the letters. Of particular value are the "Chronologies" which appear as appendixes at the end of the even-numbered volumes.

3466. [Roosevelt, Theodore] Blum, John Morton. The Republican Roosevelt. Cambridge, Harvard University Press, 1954. 170 p. 54–5182 E757.B65

A brief but by no means slight interpretation of the purposes and methods of Theodore Roosevelt’s public career, based mainly upon his published works. In the author’s opinion, Roosevelt was "a professional Republican politician from New York" who "made a career of politics, studied and mastered politics," because he "loved power." Proficient in the processes of politics, administration, and legislation, he dominated and, for a time, strengthened his party; he exerted pressure upon and persuaded the public; he negotiated with and disciplined Congress, learning continuously to compromise and adjust. His purpose, both in domestic and foreign policy, remained governed by "those related constants: his quest for order, his faith in power" as a means of maintaining or imposing national and international stability and justice. Mr. Blum sees tragedy in the fact that "not all the techniques mastered, not all the expert and moral men summoned to advise, not all the intuition and compassion, not all the adroitness in negotiation or the measured sense of pace of change, not all the nice perceptions about social organization subdued his lust to rule."

3467. [Roosevelt, Theodore] Pringle, Henry F. Theodore Roosevelt, a biography. New York, Harcourt, Brace, 1931. 627 p. illus. 31–31893 E757.P96. Bibliography: p. 607–612.

A well-documented political biography of Theodore Roosevelt, nearly half of which is devoted to his years in the Presidency, 1901–9. He is characterized here as a "violently adolescent" person, with a genius for the picturesque, restlessly and aggressively energetic, a jingo, an imperialist, and a conservative who was led "into strange bypaths of political thought" by his fury at the courts for their frequent nullification of Rooseveltian concepts. The core of his political philosophy is seen as "righteousness," coupled with "a due regard for opportunism" and compromise. He sought the "moral regeneration of the business world" through control of corporations, regulation of railroads, conservation, and protection of the rights of labor. He promoted, among other matters, subjugation of the Philippines, limited independence for Cuba, and the construction of the Panama Canal, besides serving as mediator in the Russo-Japanese War. Roosevelt broke with Taft and the Old Guard, turning to radicalism and "the program of William Jennings Bryan and the Democratic party," in Mr. Pringle’s opinion, because of his desire to substitute control and perpetuation of the existing order for the Stalwarts’ complacency and drift. The relationship of Roosevelt to radicalism and progressivism is more fully developed in Professor George E. Mowry’s Theodore Roosevelt and the Progressive Movement (Madison, University of Wisconsin Press, 1946. 405 p.). Roosevelt, the author believes, served as the "advance agent of progressivism" by his continual preaching, leaving the work of legislation to later comers. Roosevelt himself underwent a slow development of his ideas and only "scaled the heights of radicalism," by placing human welfare before profits and property, in a speech delivered at Osawatomie, Kansas, in 1910. Combining Hamiltonian means with Jeffersonian ends, his New Nationalism offered the "concept of a master regulatory state." Mr. Carleton Putnam, who closed a career as an airline executive in order to undertake a full-length portrait of Roosevelt, "done both judicially and sympathetically," has published the first of four projected volumes: Theodore Roosevelt, v. 1, The Formative Years, 1858–1886 (New York, Scribner, 1958. 626 p.). An impressive accumulation of detail, it takes for its epigraph a pronouncement of Roosevelt’s in 1885 warning against the tyranny of the majority in a democracy.

3468. Sullivan, Mark. Our times, 1900–1925. New York, Scribner, 1936, ©1927–35. 6 v. 51–4248 E741.S944

CONTENTS.—1. The turn of the century.—2. America finding herself.—3. Pre-war America.—4. The war begins, 1909–1914.—5. Over here, 1914–1918.—6. The twenties.

A report, in the best journalistic sense, on American life during the years 1900–1915, the purpose of which "is to follow an average American through this quarter-century of his country’s history, to recreate the flow of the days as he saw them, to picture events in terms of their influence on him, his daily life and ultimate destiny." Actors and events are appraised according to their effects upon this average man, his emotions about them, and his influence upon them. The author has consulted not only formal documents, newspaper files, and other printed records, but also his own correspondence with participants and eyewitnesses, his on-the-spot notes, and newspaper dispatches. Politics is presented principally through the personalities of the Presidents and other conspicuous leaders, but each is regarded as achieving his eminence through his fitness to represent powerful social trends. The history of the people from 1900 to 1925, Mr. Sullivan believes, was "determined less by politicians than by leaders in other walks of life." American achievements were "markedly more important in the fields of science, the invention and perfection of mechanical processes, and the extension of knowledge, than in the field of politics." Besides discussions of these, the author offers lively descriptions of a variety of matters such as prices, fashions, amusements, literature, music, and the theater. A noteworthy feature of these volumes is the abundant and well-chosen illustrations from contemporary sources.

3469.Wilson, Woodrow. Public papers. Authorized ed. Edited by Ray Stannard Baker and William E. Dodd. New York, Harper, 1925–27. 6 v. in 3. 27–15113 E660.W722

Bibliography edited by H. S. Leach: [v. 2] p. 475–506; [v. 4] p. 437–483; [v. 6] p. 543–636.

CONTENTS.—[v. 1–2] College and state; educational, literary and political papers (1875–1913).—[v. 3–4] The new democracy; presidential messages, addresses, and other papers (1913–1917).—[v. 5–6] War and peace; presidential messages, addresses, and public papers (1917–1924).

A collection of the addresses, messages, and other public papers of Woodrow Wilson (1856–1924), 28th President of the United States. The editors have selected documents which best display his intellectual growth and express his principles and policies in the three fields of his greatest interest—politics, education, and religion; they see in all a tendency "toward social and political change, even revolution." In Wilson’s earliest writings, he is a historian and professor of jurisprudence, the leader of a reform movement at Princeton University, and an advocate of education as a means to a better social and political order. The presidential papers reveal a resolute leader, with a sense of responsibility to the unknown masses of men and above all to history, whose passion for peace was modified by a love of justice. Dealing with transcendent issues, the important public utterances of the great years of Wilson’s second administration, 1918–19, are his finest, both in substance, and in "superb and moving simplicity." In the editors’ opinion, "general readers will nowhere find a more succinct and felicitous presentation of the dominating American principles and ideals of the period, or a more powerful appeal for the realization of one of the exalted visions of mankind."

3470. [Wilson] Baker, Ray Stannard. Woodrow Wilson; life and letters. Potomac ed. New York, Scribner, 1946. 7 v. illus. 46–2000 E767.B16 1946

CONTENTS.—[v. I] Youth Princeton, 1856–1910.—[v. 2] Governor, 1910–1913.—[v. 3] President, 1913–1914.—.[v. 4] Neutrality, 1914–1915.—[v. 5] Facing war, 1915–1917.—[v. 6] War Leader, 1917–1918.—[v. 7] Armistice, Mar. 1–Nov. 11, 1918.

A sympathetic, massive, and painstakingly documented biography of Wilson, consisting in large part of excerpts from the enormous collection of his public and private papers now in the Library of Congress. Mr. Baker had the advantage of personal acquaintance with Wilson and of conversation and correspondence with members of his Cabinet, members of Congress, and others closely associated with him at various stages of his life. The author attempts "to present the man as he was" through his own letters and memoranda, and provides only enough of the historical setting to explain Wilson’s actions. In Mr. Baker’s opinion, Wilson spent 54 years "in preparation, ten in living, three in dying." In 1885 he began a brilliant career as educator, writer, and lecturer on history and politics, but his labors as college professor and as president of Princeton University formed a "secondary course." His primary ambition was "to take an active, if possible a leading, part in public life." It was natural rather than astonishing, the author believes, that Wilson came confidently as Democratic nominee to the New Jersey gubernatorial race of 1910 and to the presidential campaign of 1912. After long years of studying political organization, the development of representative government, and the then current public issues, he easily "out-generaled the most experienced bosses, dominated his party, came early to control Congress, and finally to stand forth preëminent as a world leader." Mr. Baker thinks that, as in his reforms at Princeton, his progressive legislation at Trenton, his magnificent early record in the Presidency, and his diplomacy in World War I, "Wilson seemed to succeed best in his first irresistible attacks—when he had his following securely behind him." In Woodrow Wilson and the People (Garden City, N.Y., Doubleday, Doran, 1945. 392 p.), Professor Herbert C. F. Bell describes Wilson’s sustained effort to achieve "communion in thought and sentiment with the rank and file of his fellow countrymen." A somewhat highhanded crusader who believed in his "mission," he claimed position and responsibility as "political spokesman and adviser of the people," in the faith that they would follow the path of righteousness should the true issues be made clear to them.

3471. [Wilson] Baker, Ray Stannard. Woodrow Wilson and world settlement, written from his unpublished and personal material. Garden City, N.Y., Doubleday, Page, 1922. 3 v. illus. 22–23112 D644.B27

Based upon official minutes, reports, resolutions, memorandums, and less formal sources, this is a record of American policies and the struggle of Woodrow Wilson and his advisers to apply them at the Peace Conference of Paris, 1919, to the problems of the wartorn world. Baker attempts to illumine the issues and the actions as well as to assess defects and strengths of leadership. Volumes I–II contain the narrative, volume III the texts of the documents referred to or quoted in it. The author wrote from firsthand knowledge, having studied economic and political conditions in the allied countries during 1918, and served as a member of the American Commission at the Conference. In an effort to substitute a new order of mutual understandings for the old sanction of force, theAmericans started with principles of justice—the self-determination of peoples, and a world association for mutual aid and protection—and attempted to have them applied by dispassionate scientists to a territorial settlement. The Americans were handicapped, however, in Baker’s view, by a lack of knowledge of Europe’s affairs, secret diplomacy, traditions, and needs, and, more especially, by the fading, both in Europe and the United States, of the high moral enthusiasm which marked the last year of World War I. Wilson, at the time of the armistice, had been the majority leader of world opinion; at the Peace Conference, "he was the leader of the opposition, a powerful opposition, but undoubtedly a minority." Although written first, this came to form the last part of Baker’s Woodrow Wilson: Life and Letters. In Wilson and the Peacemakers (New York, Macmillan, 1947. 2 v. in 1), a critical reinterpretation of our participation in the making of the world settlement of 1919 and of American failure to honor Wilson’s pledges, Thomas A. Bailey distinguishes between the cause of our entry into World War I—to defend the American principle of freedom of the seas—and the objectives of the peace—to save the world from Prussian autocracy, to make the world safe for democracy, and to end all wars. Wilson’s aims were pitched too high, he believes, and did not command the support of the American people. Although Professor Bailey is in complete sympathy with Wilson’s broad program and with his vision for the future, he finds that the President was tactless, stubborn, and unrealistic. In the author’s opinion, American reservations about the Treaty of Versailles should have been resolved by compromise. "The United States had a world to gain and virtually nothing to lose by joining the League of Nations."

3472. [Wilson] Link, Arthur S. Wilson. Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1947–56. 2 v. illus. 47–3554 E767.L65

CONTENTS.—[1] The road to the White House.— [2] The new freedom.

Bibliography: v. [1], p. [529]–543; v. [2], p. [473]–488.

The first volumes in a large-scale and elaborately documented series devoted to a study of the life and times of Woodrow Wilson. In his analysis of Wilson’s presidency of Princeton University (1902–10) Professor Link discovers a pattern of early success in reorganizing the university, increasing pressure for reform, resultant disharmony and frustration, and, in 1910, defeat; he calls this pattern "the microcosm of a later macrocosm." Wilson’s entry into politics in 1910 as gubernatorial candidate of the conservative New Jersey Democratic machine, his disregard of the party leaders, and his victorious-emergence from the campaign as one of the foremost progressive Democrats, the author considers "one of the miracles of modern politics." The second volume covers only the first two years of the Wilson administration, the New Freedom phase (1913–14) when tariff, tax, and currency reforms and antitrust legislation were enacted in answer to the demands of public opinion. Wilson’s greatest contribution, his expansion and perfection of the powers of the Presidency, he achieved by asserting his position as spokesman of the people, by using public opinion as a spur to Congress, by affirming and establishing leadership of Congress, and by seizing party leadership.

3473. [Wilson] Link, Arthur S. Woodrow Wilson and the progressive era, 1910–1917. New York, Harper, 1954. xvii, 331 p. illus. (The New American Nation series) 53–11849 E766.L5

"Essays on sources": p. 283–313.

A compact treatment of the political and diplomatic history of the United States from the beginning of the split in the Republican Party in 1910 to the Nation’s entry into World War I in 1917, based on Professor Link’s research for his monumental biography of Wilson (q. v.). After surveying briefly the political situation of 1910, the various shades of progressivism, and the issues involved in the election of 1912, the author offers a closely reasoned analysis of Wilson’s initial legislative program whereby he secured lowered tariff rates, the enactment of an income tax system, creation of the Federal Trade Commission, and, "crowning achievement of the first Wilson administration," the Federal Reserve System. Wilson’s foreign policy, especially toward Latin America, Professor Link explains in terms of inherited commitments and problems, a subconscious "missionary impulse," naïveté, and imperialism, as well as a conscious ambition to be just, and to advance the causes of peace, democracy, and Christianity. In the author’s opinion, Wilson found neither Great Britain nor Germany fighting the Great War for worthy objectives. It was "the German decision to gamble on all-out victory or complete ruin" which finally compelled Wilson to take the drastic action leading to war.

3474. Wish, Harvey. Contemporary America, the national scene since 1900. Rev. ed. New York, Harper, 1955. 714 p. illus. 54–11008 E741.W78 1955. Bibliography: p. 683–699.

First published in 1948.

Based upon the urban approach to culture, this history of 20th-century America examines the trends among arts and sciences as well as politics andeconomics for clues to national motivation and the direction in which out civilization is moving. "Among the useful concepts of cultural integration," the author observes, "have been, first of all, the impact of the metropolis and technology upon our behavior, the rise, decline, and revival of the businessman’s leadership in politics and popular culture, the diffusion of foreign as well as indigenous ideas here, and the basic patterns of diplomatic policies." He notes a general faith in progress and the promise of American life, an acquiescence in urban dominance, an unfortunate encouragement of a standardized culture through "socially unregulated technology," a tendency toward concentration in businesses, and a steady growth of mass production. "Since the beginning of the century," Professor Wish believes, "a richer, more powerful, and more equitable society had emerged."


Related Resources

None available for this document.

Download Options

Title: A Guide to the Study of the United States of America

Select an option:

*Note: A download may not start for up to 60 seconds.

Email Options

Title: A Guide to the Study of the United States of America

Select an option:

Email addres:

*Note: It may take up to 60 seconds for for the email to be generated.

Chicago: "J. Theodore Roosevelt to Wilson (1901– 21)," A Guide to the Study of the United States of America in Donald H. Mugridge, Blanche P. McCrum, and Roy P. Basler, a Guide to the Study of the United States of America (Washington, D.C.: Library of Congress, 1960), Pp.394-401 395–400. Original Sources, accessed March 25, 2023, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=LKFVJCCUX3C739X.

MLA: . "J. Theodore Roosevelt to Wilson (1901– 21)." A Guide to the Study of the United States of America, in Donald H. Mugridge, Blanche P. McCrum, and Roy P. Basler, a Guide to the Study of the United States of America (Washington, D.C.: Library of Congress, 1960), Pp.394-401, pp. 395–400. Original Sources. 25 Mar. 2023. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=LKFVJCCUX3C739X.

Harvard: , 'J. Theodore Roosevelt to Wilson (1901– 21)' in A Guide to the Study of the United States of America. cited in , Donald H. Mugridge, Blanche P. McCrum, and Roy P. Basler, a Guide to the Study of the United States of America (Washington, D.C.: Library of Congress, 1960), Pp.394-401, pp.395–400. Original Sources, retrieved 25 March 2023, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=LKFVJCCUX3C739X.