John Randolph: A New Edition with Primary Documents and Introduction by Robert Mccolley
America's foremost political eccentric of the early national era, the Virginian John Randolph of Roanoke (1773-1833), referred to John and John Quincy Adams as the American House of Stuart and opposed virtually all their political deeds and principles. Henry Adams, perhaps the most eccentric as well as brilliant American historian of the nineteenth century, avenged his grandfather and great-grandfather with this incisively negative biography. Its relative brevity makes it an ideal introduction to Henry Adams's thinking and writing about American history. Furthermore, however unbalanced and therefore unfair to its subject, Adams's Randolph leaves a compelling picture of a states' rights idealist who became, before he died, the prophet of the southern defense of slavery.
As greatly and deeply as Henry Adams disliked John Randolph of Roanoke, he had, almost in spite of himself, a deep bond of sympathy. Both were morally and culturally cut off from the booster-dominated, progressive, materialistic mainstream of United States culture. American aristocrats by birth, education, and wealth, both were insiders turned outsiders.