The clashes between President Abraham Lincoln and Chief Justice Roger B. Taney over slavery, secession, and Lincoln's constitutional war powers went to the heart of Lincoln's presidency. Lincoln and Taney's bitter disagreements began with Taney's Dred Scott opinion in 1857, when the Chief Justice declared that the Constitution did not grant the black man any rights that the white man was bound to honor. Lincoln attacked the opinion as a warped judicial interperatation of the Framers' intent and accused Taney of being a member of a pro-slavery national conspiracy. In his first inaugural address, Lincoln insisted that the South had no legal right to secede. Taney, who administered the oath of office to Lincoln, believed that the South's seccession was legal and in the best interests of both sections of the country. Once the war began, Lincoln broadly interpreted his constitutional powers as commander in chief to prosecute the war, suspending habeas corpus, censoring the press, and allowing military courts to try civilians for treason. Taney vociferously disagreed, accusing Lincoln of assuming dictatorial powers in violation of the Constitution. Lincoln ignored Taney's protests, and exercised his presidential authority fearlessly, determined that he would preserve the Union. James F. Simon skillfully brings to life this compelling story of the momentous tug-of-war between the President and the Chief Justice during the worst crisis in the nation's history. "...taut and gripping...a dramatic, charged narrative."-Publishers Weekly Starred Review
Click the Download button to download a copy of the MARC file.
Enter your FTP details below to send the MARC export file via FTP.
by Steven James
by Paul Aron
by Charles Pellegrino
by Jan Cheripko
by James Patterson
by James Jennewein, Tom S. Parker
by James M. McPherson
by Jim Butcher, Kat Richardson, Simon R. Green, Thomas E. Sniegoski
by Professor Thomas F. Madden
by James L. Stokesbury
"The intersection of the lives of Supreme Court Justice Roger B. Taney and Abraham Lincoln is best known for their battle over slavery. During the Civil War, clashes also occurred over civilian rights in military courts and presidential war powers---issues relevant to contemporary listeners. Richard Allen delivers detailed courtroom documents with clarity, keeping listeners intrigued as to the next stage in the drama. However, his erratic pronunciation of "Illinois" and a Union general's name is a bit off-putting. Nonetheless, Simon's biographical and educational background on both individuals is conveyed with empathy by Allen, especially his portrait of the aging Taney, beset by family losses and shivering in ill-heated quarters in the basement of the Supreme Court. D.P.D. (c) AudioFile 2007, Portland, Maine"
Sign up for our email newsletter