FIRST EDITION, PRESENTATION COPY, OF THE LIFE, PUBLIC SERVICES AND SELECTED SPEECHES OF RUTHERFORD B. HAYES, INSCRIBED BY PRESIDENT HAYES TO A HIGHLY CONTROVERSIAL SIXTH CIRCUIT JUDGE KNOWN FOR HIS RACIAL BIASES
(HAYES, Rutherford B.) HOWARD, J.Q. Life, Public Services and Select Speeches of Rutherford B. Hayes. Cincinnati: Robert Clarke, 1876. Octavo, original green cloth. Housed in a custom half morocco slipcase.
First edition, presentation copy, of this biography of Rutherford B. Hayes also featuring selected speeches, inscribed by President-elect Hayes to a controversial Sixth Circuit judge notorious for his outrageous treatment of black defendants: "Hon T.J. Mackey with the Compliments of R.B. Hayes. Dec 28, 1876."
This work comprises a biography of and selected speeches by Rutherford B. Hayes, the single-term 19th president of the United States. Hayes is credited with helping to restore ethics to a scandal-ridden and corruption-plagued Washington. However, Hayes also presided over the end of Reconstruction in the South, ensuring a return to white supremacist government. Interestingly, Hayes almost lost the presidency; his fate was only decided through the intervention of a commission of congressman and Supreme Court justices who were appointed to to rule on contested electoral ballots. Hayes spent the entirety of his presidency with serious questions hanging over his legitimacy, particularly in the North. This copy is inscribed by Hayes to Sixth Circuit judge J.T. Mackey, suggesting that Northern sentiment toward Hayes was accurate. Mackey was notorious for the unfair treatment of black defendants in his courtroom, though he publicly boasted about his even-handedness. Due to alleged offenses including jailing an innocent black man without warrant or authority and coercing jury verdicts, the House of Representatives went so far as to demand an investigation of his conduct. A few marginal pencil markings to interior.
Mild foxing mainly to preliminaries, light wear and foxing to binding. A handsome inscribed copy.