Analyzing Mediocre, Good, and Great U.S. Grant Biographies

Nick Sacco has some good commentary on Ulysses S. Grant biographies. I think he needs to include the Lloyd Lewis/Bruce Catton trilogy of Captain Sam Grant, Grant Moves South, and Grant Takes Command, but what he has here is excellent. I would also include Michael Korda’s mess and William Woodward’s Meet General Grant in a separate category of “Suitable only to line the bottom of birdcages.”

Exploring the Past

Photo Credit: Wikipedia Photo Credit: Wikipedia

The other day I came across a history blog run by a gentleman named Stephen Floyd. Mr. Floyd is using his blog to share his experiences on a “journey through the best presidential biographies,” which includes reading almost 100 biographies of U.S. presidents from George Washington to Barack Obama. Stephen is currently reading a few biographies of President Ulysses S. Grant, and I feel inspired to write an overview of what I consider to be the most notable “mediocre, good, and great” Grant biographies. There are literally hundreds if not thousands of biographies on Grant that one can choose from, and I’d argue that there really isn’t a “definitive” study of Grant out there at this time. Nevertheless, I am going to focus on ten noteworthy authors here.

I consider a “mediocre” Grant biography to be one that hardcore scholars should read in order to understand…

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