The Best Biographies of Franklin Pierce

My Journey Through the Best Presidential Biographies

imgres Brooklyn Dodgers manager Leo Durocher once remarked that “nice guys finish last”. Although he was referring to the dating scene and not politics, Franklin Pierce would have agreed with that statement to the extent it was applied to the presidency rather than courtship.

And although Franklin Pierce is not considered the very worst president this country has seen, he is uncomfortably close to the bottom of the pile. Even as he lived out his final years, Pierce knew history was not treating his legacy well. And he was, by nearly all accounts, a very nice guy.

From what I can tell, Pierce was a big fish in a small pond – or really a small fish in a tiny pond (New Hampshire). Shortly after being elected his town’s “moderator” at the age of twenty-four he was elected to the state legislature. Aided in his political ascension by his father’s reputation…

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