The acclaimed film, “Lincoln” directed by Steven Spielberg, based partly on Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin, and the upcoming President’s Day holiday may whet your appetite for learning more about the lives of our nation’s presidents. A great browsing and reference book on the American presidents is, Don’t Know Much About the American Presidents: Everything you need to know about the most powerful office on earth and the men who have occupied it by Kenneth C. Davis (2012). A significant question and explanation is given for each of the presidents, i.e., “What is Obamacare?” At the end of each president’s chapter are handy “must reads” and “Online Resources” sections. The author offers a final (personal) judgment grade for each of the presidents.
Another interesting book to peruse is Presidential Retreats: Where the Presidents Went and Why They Went There by Peter Hannaford (2012) which explores the leisure side of the presidency and, in some cases, the post presidency years from George Washington to Barack Obama. “Camp David,” began as a project of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) and was intended to be used as a boys’ camp. When President Roosevelt first saw the place he called it “Shangri-La” since it resembled a place of perfect peace reminiscent of James Hilton’s Lost Horizon. It was renamed “Camp David” by President Eisenhower in honor of his grandson David.
David Eisenhower with Julie Nixon Eisenhower wrote a book about his grandfather Dwight D. Eisenhower in 2010, entitled, Home to Glory: A Memoir of Life with Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961-1969. It brings to life the days of General Eisenhower, as he preferred to be called, following his leaving the White House. Dwight Eisenhower was influential in several spheres as a former WWII general and his opinion on foreign matters was sought from time to time by President John Kennedy and later by President Lyndon Johnson. Gen. Eisenhower enjoyed painting as a hobby and would give a painting away to a family member or dignitary of which he was fond.
There are, of course, many more biographies of the earlier as well as modern presidents in the Watertown Public Library. Come in and browse biographies and history.
Written by Reference Librarian Ellie.