Ohio Presidents: A Whig and Seven Republicans by Dale Thomas

Title: Ohio Presidents: A Whig and Seven Republicans, Author: Dale Thomas Ohio Presidents. Finished 9-17-19. rating 4/5, history, 128 pages, pub. 2019

Eight presidents have roots in Ohio, where today these communities take pride in their heritage. William Henry Harrison, a Whig, served the shortest period of time as any president, but his legacy is the campaign strategy of 1840. Northern Whigs formed the Republican Party in 1854. After the Civil War, Ohio became a swing state for the party in presidential elections.

Ulysses S. Grant’s exceptional leadership in the Civil War contrasted with his problems as president. Rutherford B. Hayes ended Reconstruction policies but could not protect the civil rights of African Americans in the South. James A. Garfield died from a gunshot fired by a disappointed office seeker. His death led to the first civil service laws. Benjamin Harrison’s administration included policies to improve the Navy and economy, but he failed to win re-election. William McKinley won election to the White House, campaigning for conservative policies. He led the nation into the Spanish American War. An anarchist assassinated him, and Theodore Roosevelt became president. Serving two terms, Roosevelt wanted William H. Taft to succeed him as president. He soon criticized Taft for being too conservative. In spite of scandals in his administration, Warren G. Harding had important accomplishments in foreign and domestic affairs.   from Goodreads

Ohio is second only to Virginia with number of Presidents it’s produced.  Interestingly, only eight U.S. Presidents have died in office and four of them were from Ohio.  The shortest tenure of any President was William Henry Harrison who fell ill three weeks after inauguration and was dead by day 32.  He was the oldest person to hold the office at 68 years until Ronald Reagan, 1841-1980 is a pretty big gap.  James A. Garfield was assassinated and died at only 6 1/2 months in office.  William McKinley was shot six months into his second term and is considered Ohio’s most successful President.  Warren G. Harding made it two years before dying of a heart attack.

We live within a hour of three presidential libraries and this year I’ve taken Gage and my mother to two.  We’ve visited the memorial of a third, but not his library yet.  The log house he grew up in is less than 10 minutes down the road from us.  Look at that run of three Ohio Presidents in a row!

9- William Henry Harrison 1841

18- Ulysses S. Grant 1869-1977

19- Rutherford B Hayes 1877-1881

20- James A Garfield 1881

25- William McKinley 1897-1901

27- William H Taft 1908-1913

29- Warren G Harding 1921-1923

This book was full of lots of great photos and relevant information put together in a very visually appealing way.  It’s amazing what he packed into this 128 page book.  I loved it.  I actually picked it up at the McKinley Presidential Library this summer.  Fun for those interested in presidential or Ohio history.

Some photos of our recent trips…

IMG_5563This is a replica of Garfield’s childhood home where it stood in Moreland Hills.  We drive by it all the time, but stopped for a pic in March.

The McKinley Museum in Canton is huge and by far the most kid friendly.  We spent all day there in July.

The Hayes Museum and Home in Fremont was wonderful.  It sits on 25 beautifully planned and maintained acres.  The museum is full of artifacts and the house (where he lived after his term in office) tour is interesting and educational.  I wish we’d had more time during our November visit.


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