Lincoln Discussion Symposium

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(12-02-2012 08:03 PM)L Verge Wrote: [ -> ]I know I am going to regret asking this, Jim, but what is a fantod?

It's something one of my great aunts used to say; based on the context, I always assumed it was a queasy feeling. Here's what my Mac dictionary has to say:
fantod |ˈfanˌtäd|
noun informal
a state or attack of uneasiness or unreasonableness: the mumbo-jumbo gave me the fantods .
ORIGIN mid 19th cent.: of unknown origin.

And you thought I made up that word, didn't you?!?!?!

(12-02-2012 07:29 PM)Thomas Thorne Wrote: [ -> ]A serious shortage of Stanton personal documents held by Stanton descendants and official institutions.

Whatever happened to the "alleged" Stanton descendants whose "agent" was Joseph Lynch?
My G*d, Tomas Thorne, get over your love affair with Stanton. He was a pluperfect jerk, no ifs, ands, or buts about it. The only thing wrong with Secretary Welles analysis of Stanton was that Welles was too nice.
I ask with Laurie, as well-what is a fantod?
Sorry Bill, I don't know what you are referring to?
Stanton was a bit cold hearted, but he lost an infant daughter, he later lost his wife at young age, he set up barriers in his relationships to avoid the pain he experienced. He took on a tough job and he was dealing with tough people. Of all the poeple in Lincoln's cabinet, he was probably the best suited to be Sec. of War. In that job he probably had to be a bit of a jerk. I'm only to about p.60 in his biography, but it is interesting. He had many similiar personal tragedies as Lincoln.

Pluperfect? Wow! I don't think I have even heard Bill O'Reilly use that word. Thanks, because I had to look it up.
Have there been any recent biographies written about Stanton? If not, would any of the historians or reseachers on this forum be up to the task?
I am by no means an uncritical admirer of Stanton. While an excellent administrator, I don't think he had sufficient calmness to deal with the stresses of battle. He was too trustful of Holt and he lacked the fine sense of discrimination required in handling internal security. Despite the accusations made against him, he did not as far as I can see use improper command influence to have the conspirators who were not sentenced to death in the L.A. put to death. I have seen no evidence that Stanton or Holt withheld the commutation recommendation re Mary Surratt from Pres Johnson.

Dear Bill
Have you seen the article by Paul Finkelman in today's New York Times "The Monster of Monticello." I have not read it yet. People who use Paul Finkelman to vindicate Southern rights are pouring gasoline over their heads.
What is the NYT? It is not read much out here in the sticks. We are a sort of ignorant folk, as you know. Using words like pluperfect and such. What do you expect? I was educated at state universities in the Deep South and the Mountain West, a damning statement I will own up to.

I did read a very disturbing article, years ago, sort of an historical fiction, in one of the gentleman's-type magazines, of Jefferson taking the virgin Sally in Paris.

So The Monster of Monticello Jefferson is not new to me. I have very mixed emotions about Jefferson, I will confess.
Just finished "Stanton, the Life and Times of Lincoln's Secretary of War" by Benjamin Thomas and Harold Hyman.
Book was over 600 pages. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Written over 50 years ago, a very well researched book with lots of footnotes. I bought it used on Amazon.

There is so much in this book it is almost overwhelming. It's fairly easy to read. I recommend it to anyone who is seriously
interested in what was going on politically in Lincoln's and Johnson's administration. You'll get a different perspective and come away with greater respect for Lincoln and Stanton, and the difficulties and pressures they operated under.
I have very fond memories of this book. I was intrigued by the "good cop" "bad cop relationship between AL and ES. Many of Stanton's critics believed he hankered for the presidency. Given his brusque personality which Stanton realized he had,Stanton would not have harbored any illusions about currying support among politicians. He did nothing to seek the Republican nomination in 1868.

He wanted to be Chief Justice after Taney died in 1864 but Lincoln deemed him too valuable at the War Department. In 1869 Grant nominated Stanton-who by this time was afflicted with a severe asthma condition-to the Supreme Court and the Senate speedily confirmed him. There was a poignant coda in which the ill Stanton received a congratulatory message addressed to "Mr Justice Stanton" signed by "U. S. Grant" and Stanton telling Mrs Stanton to have his law books out so he could prepare for the next Supreme Court term. I believe Stanton died within a couple of days of asthma before he could take the required oaths to become an Associate Justice.

The story that he killed himself in remorse for Mrs Surratt anticipated the journalistic standards of the "Weekly World News" without its humor.
Me, too--in fact I am planning to re-read it sometime this year along with Reveille in Washington.
I'm still trying to sort out Edward Stanton. Didn't he continue to correspond back and forth with Lincoln's predecessor James Buchanan --and ridiculing Lincoln to him, almost somehow as if Stanton expected, what, Lincoln to be impeached or removed, and maybe Buchanan again take the presidency? The experts I see heap credit on Stanton for 'removing confederate sympathizers' from the War Dept, but it almost seems to me that the biggest of the lot were Stanton and President Buchanan. I think if I were Lincoln (the railsplitter, wrestler, etc), I would have confronted Ed Stanton and said "What's this you been saying about me: gorilla, ape, giraffe?" And then taken him by the ear and tossed him out into the street.
First, his correct name is Edwin McMasters Stanton, not Edward. And, luckily you were not Lincoln. I'm one of those who believes that historians in the past have done a disservice to Stanton's work. Strange personality, but dedicated to the Union and winning the war. That's what Lincoln needed, and they had mutual respect for each other. To me, the Cabinet member that needed watching was Salmon P. Chase. How can we malign him?
I agree in all points, Laurie.
(12-17-2015 09:45 PM)maharba Wrote: [ -> ]If I were Lincoln...I would have confronted Ed Stanton and said "What's this you been saying about me: gorilla, ape, giraffe?" And then taken him by the ear and tossed him out into the street.
"Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord." (Romans 12:19)

See, and that's one thing that makes me feel Lincoln (even though probably not a "technical Christian") cherished Christian values and was very serious and not just doing for "show" when "preaching" such as "let us judge not, that we be not judged...with malice toward none, with charity for all."

He lived this in many situations, and this is one trait where he makes a good role model IMO.

When Lincoln opposer Henry Winter Davis of Baltimore had failed re-election to Congress and Assistant Secretary of the Navy Fox jubilated, Lincoln replied: "I cannot quite agree with you. You have more of the feeling of personal resentment than I. Perhaps I have too little of it; but I never thought it paid. A man has no time to spend half his life in quarrels. If any man ceases to attack me I never remember the past against him."
If any man ceases to attack me I never remember the past against him." >

I'm not sure Ed Stanton ever did cease to attack Abraham Lincoln. He strikes me as a very dangerous lunatic. From digging up folks and keeping them for years in his parlor, to barricading himself in his office after Pres Johnson canned him, and there is so much we do not know of Stanton or Buchanans correspondence. Some scholars claim he had useful value because Stanton was a good hatchet man. I think he was using a twin-bladed hatchet though.
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