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Children's LiteratureIn the annals of the American Presidency only two people have faced impeachment. One of those chief executives was Andrew Johnson. The successor to Abraham Lincoln following his assassination, Andrew Johnson ran afoul of the deep divisions that scarred the country after the conclusion of the Civil War. An irascible man, Johnson was notorious for bluntly speaking his mind and acting in a highhanded manner. This style of leadership plus Johnson's innate prejudice against African-Americans made him a leader seemingly destined to clash with the prevailing majority of Republicans who controlled the Reconstruction government. In the end, Johnson was impeached but not convicted of "high crimes and misdemeanors" by the US Senate. By a margin of one vote, Andrew Johnson maintained his presidency. Ironically, only a few years later Johnson was returned to the very same Senate as a representative of his home state of Tennessee. Johnson remains the only former President of the United States to return to the Senate after the conclusion of his term. Johnson was a man capable of good as well as evil. His complex life and times are displayed in this well-written work with all the beauty and ugliness included. This fine political biography—one title in the "Presidential Leaders" series—is one that readers with an interest in Civil War history will enjoy. 2005, Lerner, Ages 12 up.
—Greg M. Romaneck