The Fait of Their Country

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The United States to 1877

HIST 1301-81884

August 3, 2012

Michael F. Holt. The Fate of Their Country: Politicians, Slavery Extension, and the Coming of the Civil War. New York: Hill and Wang, 2004. Pp. xiv, 168. Paper $13.00. ISBN: 0-0809-0443-9.

Michael F Holt attended Princeton University where he earned a bachelor’s degree in history; he then went on to earn at masters and doctorate in history at Johnson Hopkins University. In addition to The Fate of Their Country, Holt has also written many other writing including Forging a Majority: The Formation of the Republican Party in Pittsburg, 1848-1860, Yale University Press, 1969. The Political Crisis of the 1850’s, Wiley, 1978. Holt has also received some awards including Morse fellow at Yale University, 1970-71. As well as National Endowment for the Humanities senior fellow, 1976-77. Based on this information The Fate of Their Country promises to be a fascinating book, based on the experience and preparation of such honorable author.

The Fate of Their Country is a book focusing on the history of politics and government as well as the civil war, covering political parties from the nineteenth century, slavery, and the extension to the territories in the United States between the years of 1845 and 1865. The main idea that Holt is trying to communicate to readers is that; “what politicians do in elective office matters, often profoundly, to the lives of ordinary Americans. (pp. xi).

Throughout The Fate of Their Country, Holt makes extensive use of both primary sources and secondary works. Among the primary sources that Holt uses extensively is Lewis Cass’s Letter to Alfredo O. P. Nicholson December 24, 1847. As well as Kansas – Nebraska Act, 1854. Secondary works that Holt uses extensively include David M. Potter, The Impeding Crisis, 1848-1861. As well as Glover B. Moore, The Missouri...
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