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The Rise and Fall (and Rise) of Salmon P. Chase
NY Times Disunion ^ | July 2, 2014 | RICK BEARD

Posted on 07/07/2014 2:31:08 AM PDT by iowamark

On July 4, 1864, four days after President Abraham Lincoln had surprised him by accepting his resignation, Treasury secretary Salmon P. Chase confided to his diary, “I am too earnest, too antislavery … [and] too radical.”

Chase surely possessed each of these attributes – in excess – but they had little to do with his unexpected exit from Lincoln’s “team of rivals.” Rather, it was much more personal. Chase’s oft-repeated threat to quit had tested the forbearance of a beleaguered president once too often. Out of patience, Lincoln ended his tenure with the observation that “you and I have reached a point of mutual embarrassment in our official relation which it seems cannot be overcome, or longer sustained.”

It had been an unlikely partnership from the start. In 1860, Chase’s presidential ambitions were second to none. A staunch anti-slavery man, he had held a Senate seat and the Ohio governor’s chair, and in one contemporary’s words “looked as you would wish a statesman to look.”...

The last of Lincoln’s three rivals for the presidency to be offered a cabinet post – William H. Seward was named secretary of state and Edward Bates attorney general...

Chase’s downfall proved short lived. In December Lincoln appointed him to the Supreme Court to succeed Chief Justice Roger Taney, who had died two months earlier. In a letter to his fiancée, Lincoln’s other secretary, John Nicolay, wrote that “no other man than Lincoln would have had … the degree of magnanimity to thus forgive and exalt a rival who had so deeply and unjustifiably intrigued against him. It is,” he continued, “only another … illustration of the greatness of the President, in this age of little men.”

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: History; Military/Veterans
KEYWORDS: civilwar; milhist; salmonpchase

1 posted on 07/07/2014 2:31:08 AM PDT by iowamark
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To: iowamark

quite honestly, this notion of "forgiving" and then "promoting" one's (lethal) political enemies ...

is just plain stupid.

Standby, we've got an incoming transmission ...

Hotel Lobby Red Phone paging Karl Rove, Juan McCain, Jeb Bush, Mitch McConnell, John Boehner ... please pick up ...

2 posted on 07/07/2014 7:28:49 AM PDT by Patton@Bastogne (.)
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