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United States: Essays 1952-1992 - "President and Mrs. U.S. Grant (1975) Summary & Analysis

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Publication of The Personal Memoirs of Julia Dent Grant, wife of Ulysses S. Grant, fills an historical void in understanding the general who, with Lincoln, fought to preserve the United States as the forces of secession and rebellion swept the land. Grant's own memoirs, written as he was dying of cancer and bankrupt, provided his widow with a lifetime inheritance and historians with an excellent autobiography, ending with the Civil War but not encompassing his presidency. Reading his wife's memoirs helps to better understand Grant, Vidal says.

Vidal plays with the title "first Lady," along with the title "president," to describe how the two occupants of the White House are "simple but awful" descriptors. Vidal agrees with historian Bruce Catton who described Mrs. Grant in the book's...

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This section contains 471 words
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Buy the United States: Essays 1952-1992 Study Guide
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