Perley's Reminiscences of Sixty Years in the National Metropolis - Vol. 1

By Ben: Perley Poore | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XXVII.
MAKING THE MOST OF POWER.

PRESIDENT TAYLOR AND HIS PRIVATE SECRETARY--SELECTION OF THE TAYLOR CABINET--THE TAYLOR FAMILY--JEFFERSON DAVIS--INAUGU- RATION CEREMONIES--OFFICE SEEKERS--PATRONAGE AND SPOILS-- THE GALPHIN, GARDINER, AND OTHER CLAIMS--THE TAYLOR ADMIN- ISTRATION--THE WHITE HOUSE.

GENERAL ZACHARY TAYLOR was, of all who have filled the Presidential chair by the choice of the people, the man least competent to perform its duties. He had been placed before his countrymen as a candidate in spite of his repeated avowals of incapacity, inexperience, and repugnance to all civil duties. Although sixty-four years of age, he had never exercised the right of suffrage, and he was well aware that he was elected solely because of his military prowess. But no sooner did he learn that he had been chosen President than he displayed the same invincible courage, practical sense, and indomitable energy in the discharge of his new and arduous civil duties which had characterized his military career.

The President-elect was fortunate in having as a companion, counselor, and friend Colonel William Wallace Bliss, who had served as his chief of staff in the Mexican campaign, and who became the husband of his favorite daughter, Miss Betty. Colonel Bliss was the son of Captain Bliss, of the regular army, and after having been reared in the State of New York he

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