JEFFERSON DAVIS, AMERICANEditorial Review - Kirkus - Jane Doe
Starting with his title, Cooper (History/Louisiana State Univ.) aims to replace the conventional image of the Confederate president as foe of the Union with a new representation as a reluctant secessionist. Yet, despite his sympathy and impressive research, the thesis just won't fly.As a US Army lieutenant, congressman, Mexican War hero, US senator, and secretary of war, Davis spent much of his ... Read full review
Review: Jefferson Davis, American: A BiographyEditorial Review - Bookreporter.com
Both a devoted American and a wealthy plantation owner who thought slavery to be a moral and social good, Jefferson Davis is one of the most complex and compelling political figures in the nation's history. Davis's duplicitous nature is at the heart of JEFFERSON DAVIS, AMERICAN, William J. Cooper's exhaustive biography of the former president of the Confederacy. Cooper bases his work on the ... Read full review
User Review - Flag as inappropriate
Historian --- or myth maker?
Not one word out of Coopers book about Davis war ultimatums of 1860. Not one word in Coopers book about Davis sending US Senator Atchison to Kansas, after Atchison and Douglas got Kansas Nebraska Act passed. There Atchison would brag he was killing to spread slavery "for the entire South" and promised to spread slavery throughout the West, including force California and Oregon to accept and respect slavery -- even though all three states, Kansas, California, and Oregon, were free states by the time Davis and Confederate leaders issued their war ultimatums of 1860.
Not one word that Jefferson Davis boasted that blacks were not human beings - at all -- not persons, but property. And by that ""logic" that blacks were not human beings, they were property, and that property had to be protected by the federal government per Dred Scott. This is in Jeff Davis own book, The Rise and Fall of the Confederate government. Think Cooper didn't read this?
In fact, Davis called -- in that same book -- the resistance to the spread of slavery as the "intolerable grievance". Cooper cant find a page, or a paragraph, to relay what Davis himself, in his own book, said about what caused the Civil War?
Not one word about Jeff Davis cowardice when captured -- never mind that his wife wrote a 20 page letter, that still exists, about it, and is in library of Congress. Davis not only wore his wife's dress, he ran away leaving the children in danger. Furthermore, according to his wife's book, Davis told his wife to get yourself killed -- force your assailants to kill you, but shooting at them and refusing to be taken alive. Get your head around that -- that's in Varinas book!
Think he does not know that?
There is much more Cooper leaves out. I don't see how anyone thinks this guy is an historian, because he is not. He is a myth maker and repeater.