The Gilded age will be remembered for the success of countless American thinkers, inventors, entrepreneurs, writers, and promoters of society justice. Couple of politicians had actually an affect on the tremendous change transforming America. The Presidency was at one all-time short in power and also influence, and also the Congress to be rife v corruption. State and city leaders shared in the graft, and the public to be kept mostly unaware. Much like in the colonial days, americans were no taking your orders native the top; rather, castle were structure a brand-new society from its foundation.

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The American Presidents who lived in the White residence from the finish of the polite War till the 1890s space sometimes referred to as "the forgettable Presidents." A case-by-case research helps illustrates this point.

Andrew Johnson was so hated he was impeached and would have actually been eliminated from office were it not for a solitary Senate vote.

A Soldier in the White House

Ulysses S. Provide was a war hero however was unprepared because that public office. He had actually not held a single elected office before the Presidency and was completely naive come the workings of Washington. He relied heavily on the advice of insiders that were stealing windy money. His secretary of war marketed Indian land to investors and also pocketed windy money. His exclusive secretary functioned with officials in the Treasury room to steal money elevated from the tax on whiskey.

Many members the his management were implicated in the Crédit Mobilier scandal, i beg your pardon defrauded the American public of usual land. Provide himself seemed over these scandals, but lacked the political skill to regulate his staff or replace them with police officers of integrity.

Electoral Woes

Rutherford B. Hayes was elected in 1876 through a margin that one electoral vote.

His follower was Rutherford B. Hayes. Hayes himself had tremendous integrity, however his Presidency was weakened through the means of his election. After the electoral votes to be counted, his opponent, Samuel Tilden, already claimed a bulk of the famous vote and needed simply one electoral vote to win. Hayes essential twenty. Precisely twenty electoral votes were in dispute due to the fact that the claims submitted dual returns — one proclaiming Hayes the victor, the various other Tilden. A Republican-biased electoral commission awarded every 20 electoral votes come the Republican Hayes, and he winner by just one electoral vote.

While he was able to claim the White House, many thought about his choice a fraud, and also his power to dominance was diminished.


James Garfield flourished Hayes come the Presidency. After ~ only 4 months, his life was cut short by one assassin"s bullet. Charles Guiteau, the killer, was so upset v Garfield because that overlooking him for a political project that he shot the chairman in cold blood on the communication of the Baltimore and Potomac train station.

James A. Garfield

Vice-President Chester Arthur ended up being the next leader. Although his political history was greatly composed of appointments of friends, the tragedy that befell his predecessor led the to think that the system had actually gone bad. The signed right into law the Pendleton Civil service Act, i m sorry opened plenty of jobs to competitive exam fairly than politics connections. The Republican Party bonus him by refusing his nomination because that the Presidency in 1884.

One chairman impeached, one president drowning in corruption, one President chosen by possible fraud, one chairman assassinated, and one disgraced through his very own party because that doing what he believed was right. Clearly this was not a an excellent time in Presidential history.

Congressional Supremacy

This to be an era of conference supremacy. The Republican party overcame the Presidency and the conference for most of these years. Both homes of conference were complete of representatives own by large business.

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Laws regulating projects were minimal and large money bought a federal government that would not interfere. Comparable conditions exist in the states. City governments were overcame by political machines. Members that a small network got power and used the public treasury to continue to be in strength — and grow fabulously affluent in the process.

Not until the dawn the the 20th century would significant attempts be made to correct the abuses the Gilded age government.