American First Ladies : Their Lives and Their Legacy

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9780815325857: American First Ladies : Their Lives and Their Legacy
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Essays provide a look at the women who have served as First Ladies, providing biographical information as well as notes on the contributions each made in her role

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From Booklist:

From Martha Washington to Hillary Rodham Clinton, American First Ladies presents accounts of 38 women and their impact upon the institution of first lady. Coverage is limited to those who were married to a president during his term of office. The impact of first ladies on all aspects of society is discussed. For example, Eliza (McCardle) Johnson's greatest contribution was her commitment to her family and husband during his presidency. Four first ladies (Anna Harrison, Letitia Tyler, Margaret Taylor, and Jane Pierce) left only a slight mark in history, therefore the essays on them are briefer than those on women who took an active role in society, such as Eleanor Roosevelt. A bibliographic essay concluding each treatment notes any writings by the first lady, memoirs by family and friends, biographies of her and her husband, and relevant newspaper articles; the location of her papers is given. A black-and-white portrait accompanies each entry, and a detailed index concludes the book.

There are many biographical compilations on these women, such as Presidents' Wives (McFarland, 1989) and The First Ladies (8th ed., White House Historical Association, 1996). However, this is the only one to include Hillary Clinton, and its biographies are the most extensive. One can see the role of the first lady evolve as one reads the chronologically presented essays. This work provides the researcher with a thorough understanding of the role these women played in our country's history and is a valuable resource for secondary-school, public, and academic libraries.

From School Library Journal:

YA?A detailed biographical resource that presents personality traits, health issues, friends, habits, and quotations about the First Ladies, from Martha Washington to Hillary Clinton. An extensive list of sources for more information is included for each entry. One appendix gives Siena College's "First Lady Polls" from 1982 and 1993, which rate each woman on a scale of 1 to 5 in 10 categories; another lists each president, term dates, and his First Lady or equivalent representative. Black-and-white portraits of the women are included. This is an important reference as it shows the impact these individuals have had on our history. Of the many books available on this topic, this one is the most informative and fascinating.?Linda A. Vretos, West Springfield High School, Springfield, VA
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Published by Routledge (1996)
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