Wrestling With His Angel: The Political Life of Abraham Lincoln Vol. II, 1849-1856
The “magisterial” (The New York Times Book Review) second volume of Sidney Blumenthal’s acclaimed, landmark biography, The Political Life of Abraham Lincoln, reveals the future president’s genius during the most decisive period of his political life when he seizes the moment, finds his voice, and helps create a new political party.
In 1849, Abraham Lincoln seems condemned to political isolation and defeat. His Whig Party is broken in the 1852 election, and disintegrates. His perennial rival, Stephen Douglas, forges an alliance with the Southern senators and Secretary of War Jefferson Davis. Violent struggle breaks out on the plains of Kansas, a prelude to the Civil War.
Lincoln rises to the occasion. Only he can take on Douglas in Illinois. He finally delivers the dramatic speech that leaves observers stunned. In 1855, he makes a race for the Senate against Douglas, which he loses when he throws his support to a rival to prevent the election of a proslavery candidate. In Wrestling With His Angel, Sidney Blumenthal explains how Lincoln and his friends operate behind the scenes to destroy the anti-immigrant party in Illinois to clear the way for a new Republican Party. Lincoln takes command and writes its first platform and vaults onto the national stage as the leader of a party that will launch him to the presidency.
The Washington Monthly hailed Blumenthal’s Volume I as, “splendid…no one can come away from reading A Self-Made Man without eagerly anticipating the ensuing volumes.” Pulitzer Prize–winning author Diane McWhorter hailed Volume II as “dramatic narrative history, prophetic and intimate.” Wrestling With His Angel brings Lincoln from the wilderness to the peak of his career as he is determined to enter into the battle for the nation’s soul and to win it for democracy.
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TWELVE I Thomas Hart Benton
FOURTEEN A SelfEvident
FIFTEEN Citizen Know Nothing
SEVENTEEN Imperialism the Highest Stage of Slavery
NINETEEN The Failure of Free Society
TWENTY The Blood of the Revolution
TWENTYONE Senator Lincoln
TWENTYTWO The Republican
SEVEN The Making of the Dark Horse
EIGHT The Victory March of Old Fuss and Feathers
NINE The Death of Henry Clay
TEN The Waterloo of the Whigs
ELEVEN The Acting President of the United States
TWENTYTHREE Destiny and Power
About the Author
33rd Congress abolitionism abolitionists Abraham Lincoln American anti-Nebraska antislavery Atchison Benton bill Boston Breckinridge Calhoun campaign candidate Chase Chicago Clay’s Committee Compromise of 1850 Congress Congressional Globe congressman Constitution convention Davis’s debate declared delegates Democratic Party Douglas Douglas’s editor election emancipation extension of slavery favor Fillmore former Free Soil Free Soil Party Free Soilers Fugitive Slave Act governor Henry Clay Herndon History House Illinois James Jefferson Davis Johannsen John Journal Kansas Kansas-Nebraska Act Kentucky Know Nothings Kossuth legislature Lovejoy Marcy Massachusetts Mexico Missouri Compromise Nebraska Act negro newspaper nomination North Northern Phillips Pierce Pierce’s platform political popular sovereignty president presidential pro-slavery railroad repeal Republican Party Robert Scott secretary Seward slaveholder slavery South speech Springfield Stephen Street Mess Sumner Taylor territory Thomas Todd Toombs Trumbull U.S. senator Union University Press Virginia vote Washington Weed Whig Party White Wickliffe William Wilmot Proviso wrote York