Dear Mr. Lincoln: Letters to the President

Dear Mr. Lincoln: Letters to the President

Dear Mr. Lincoln: Letters to the President

Dear Mr. Lincoln: Letters to the President

Synopsis

Harold Holzer is Chief Communications Officer at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. He is the author of many books on the Civil War era, including Lincoln on Democracy with Mario Cuomo, Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory: The Civil War in Art with Mark E. Neely, Jr., and The Lincoln-Douglas Debates: The First Complete Unexpurgated Text. For Dear Mr. Lincoln Mr. Holzer won the Barondess/Lincoln Award of the Civil War and the Award of Achievment of the Lincoln Group of New York. He has recieved numerous other awards and honorary degrees for his Lincoln scholarship.

Excerpt

the characteris tically American collection presented in this book can trace its roots to, of all places, Japan, where I travelled in September 1991 as press officer to New York Governor Mario Cuomo.

The trip was designed as an economic development mission— indeed, it did yield some important trade agreements—but while in Tokyo, the Governor also made news of the purely political kind by offering the first hint that he would bow to the hopes of his admirers and give serious consideration to running for the presidency the following year.

Ultimately he decided to remain governor (had he done otherwise, it might be noted, I probably would never have found the time to assemble this book). But four months of speculation about his candidacy served to trigger, along with other reactions, a huge outpouring of mail from all over the country and the world.

The overwhelming majority of letters urged him to run, but a surprising and substantial number recommended the opposite. and a tiny smattering of anonymous mail brought ugly ethnic slurs, and even an occasional threat. Out of that burst of public sentiment ultimately came the idea for this collection.

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