Sly and Able: A Political Biography of James F. Byrnes

By David Robertson | Go to book overview

2

Pitchfork
Ben Tillman

Jimmy Byrnes' first entrance on the national stage was followed by something of an embarrassment: he caught the mumps. Shortly after delivering his maiden speech in 1911 to the House of Representatives—in which he pledged to join in the upcoming "battle of the ballots" to toss out Republican rule in 1912—a case of the childhood disease began making the rounds among congressional pages. Byrnes, who was self-conscious about his slight build and youthful appearance among the House's senior statesmen, felt himself becoming feverish; and to his discomfort, the self-proclaimed warrior was kept out of action for several weeks while he recovered from a pair of swollen glands. "Mr. Byrnes, of South Carolina," noted the Congressional Record with a nice diplomacy, "by unanimous consent, was granted a leave of two weeks on account of important business." Byrnes thereby was given time to recuperate—and what posterity didn't know, as far as he was concerned, probably wouldn't hurt it.

The leave also afforded Jimmy and Maude Byrnes more time to make themselves a home in Washington. They had already seen much in that city that was pleasingly familiar to two young people who had grown up

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Sly and Able: A Political Biography of James F. Byrnes
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Sly and Able - A Political Biography of James F. Byrnes *
  • Contents *
  • Preface *
  • Introduction - Jimmy, You'Re Close to Me Personally. *
  • Part One - Political Fathers: Learning the Craft 1882-1930 *
  • 1 - Can Anything Good Come Out of Charleston? *
  • 2 - Pitchfork Ben Tillman *
  • 3 - Dear Mr. Baruch *
  • Part Two - The Inheritance: the Senate and Beyond 1931-1941 *
  • 4 - Fixer from the Palmetto State *
  • 5 - The General Textile Strike of 1934 *
  • 6 - The Philadelphia Story *
  • 7 - A Vast Empire Nearby *
  • 8 - They Were Utterly Deceived *
  • 9 - Jumping the Traces *
  • 10 - The Purge of 1938 *
  • 11 - Justice Byrnes and the Coming of War *
  • Part Three - Leaving His Father's House 1942-1972 *
  • 12 - The Assistant President *
  • 13 - The Convention of 1944 *
  • 14 - Roosevelt's Last Gift *
  • 15 - Politics and the Bomb *
  • 16 - The Street to Hiroshima *
  • 17 - Rocking the Boat with Truman *
  • 18 - Iranian Winter and a Cold Warrior *
  • 19 - A Disquisition on Government *
  • 20 - South Carolina Coda *
  • Bibliography *
  • Notes *
  • Acknowledgments *
  • Index *
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