Matthew Dallek

Alexander the Great

In his exhaustive and engaging biography of Alexander Hamilton, Ron Chernow, (who has authored biographies of John D. Rockefeller Sr., and J.P. Morgan) describes Hamilton as the indispensable revolutionary. Chernow’s gripping story sheds new light not only on Hamilton’s legacy but also on the conflicts that accompanied the republic’s birth. He passionately believed that if… Read more »

Hidden Assets

But in 1954, Jackson suffered a heart attack and died before he could finish this book. More than 40 years later, Robert Barrett, a law professor at St. John’s University working on a Jackson biography, received a call from Jackson’s family. They told him that Jackson’s son, Bill, had died, and that the relatives had… Read more »

Intrigue of Nations

On April 2, 1917, President Woodrow Wilson appeared before a joint session of Congress to deliver a speech about the war in Europe. The German Navy was waging “warfare against mankind” on the high seas, he told the lawmakers. German submarines had sunk unarmed passenger ships, murdered American civilians, and assaulted the sensibilities of freedom-loving… Read more »

Founding Principal

This basic tension–rights versus unity; individualism against nationalism–has been manifest through many periods of American history, but it suffused the politics of the founding generation. In Gentleman Revolutionary, Richard Brookhiser, who has written the biographies of several other founding fathers, has produced a life of Gouverneur Morris, a little-regarded founder of whom most Americans have… Read more »