The Secret Presidency of Edith Wilson
After President Woodrow Wilson suffered a paralyzing stroke in the fall of 1919, his wife, First Lady Edith Wilson, began to handle the day-to-day responsibilities of the Executive Office. Mrs. Wilson had had little formal education and had only been married to President Wilson for four years; yet, in the tenuous peace following the end of World War I, Mrs. Wilson assumed the authority of the office of the president, reading all correspondence intended for her bedridden husband and assuming his role for seventeen long months. Though her Oval Office presence was acknowledged in Washington, D.C. circles at the timeone senator called her "the Presidentress who had fulfilled the dream of suffragettes by changing her title from First Lady to Acting First Man"her legacy as "First Woman President" is now largely forgotten.
William Hazelgrove's Madam President is a vivid, engaging portrait of the woman who became the acting President of the United States in 1919, months before women officially won the right to vote.
Published: October, 2016