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The President is a Traitor!

Recently announced by Hachette Book Group is the next unputdownable literary blockbuster by the world’s bestselling author, James Patterson, and co-author, Special Investigator Robert Mueller! Pre-order your copy now of “The President is a Traitor”!

In this gripping page-turner from the unlikely duo of former FBI Director and the master of psychological thrillers, comes the unbelievable & truly terrifying, “The President is a Traitor”!

When a foreign power manipulates the United States’ electoral process and installs its own candidate in the White House, elected officials of both parties have no choice but to look the other way or suffer the consequences of losing their unlimited meal tickets of corporate donations and big business bail outs.

Now, the American people are caught between the government they thought was fighting for them, or taking to the streets themselves to take back the White House when they realize beyond a reasonable doubt, that their President is a traitor!

the President is a Traitor by James Patterson and Robert Mueller

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The Death of William McKinley

William Mckinley Seated At Desk

William McKinley

previously published on BuffaloSoapBox

Today marks the death of President William McKinley after being shot on September 6, 1901 while greeting fair-goers at the Pan-American Exposition.  Many joke that this was the beginning of the end for Buffalo, since once you kill a President people tend to stop returning your calls.  The financial failure of the Exposition however, and the death of the President has always cast a pall over remembrances of turn-of-the-century Buffalo.

Although the assassin, Leon Czolgosz, fired two shots at the President, one was deflected by a button.  Nevertheless, the second bullet could not be located by the inexperienced doctors who poked and prodded the President’s wound in vain.

Remarkably, even after his death and autopsy, the second bullet was never found.  It is believed that after passing through the President’s stomach, colon, and kidney, as well as damaging his adrenal glands and pancreas, that it became lodged somewhere in his back muscles.

After the unsuccessful surgery in the Pan-American Exposition’s primitive hospital, McKinley was moved to Exposition president John Milburn’s house on Delaware Avenue.  There he remained while gangrene set in and slowly poisoned his blood.

There is a historical marker standing on Delaware Avenue at the site of the Milburn House, which was demolished in 1957 in favor of a parking lot for Canisius High School, as well as one on Fordham Drive at approximately the location where McKinley was shot within the Temple of Music.  Intended as a temporary structure, as most of the buildings at the fair were, the Temple of Music was demolished in November, 1901.

As for the President’s assassin, Leon Czolgosz, he was severely beaten by the crowd inside the Temple of Music after shooting McKinley, and it was perhaps only the wounded President’s intervention that kept him from being killed himself.  He was executed 45 days after McKinley’s death and sulfuric acid was poured into his coffin to destroy his remains.

Vice President Roosevelt was vacationing in the Adirondacks, climbing mountains and boxing grizzly bears at the time after initially being told the President was improving.  When it was clear this was not the case, he raced to Buffalo, where he was greeted at the station with news of the President’s death.  A few hours later, Roosevelt took the oath of office at the Ansley Wilcox House, one of the few landmarks in this story still standing.

President and the Assassin by Scott MillerRecently, two books were published on the subject of McKinley’s assassination, The President and the Assassin, and The Secret Plot to Kill William McKinley.  The first, by Scott Miller, sets the assassination in the political context of the time, focusing heavily on the Spanish American War, anarchism and the role of business in politics.  It follows the rise of McKinley as equally as it does Czolgosz, tracing his infatuation with anarchism and attempts to ingratiate himself with Emma Goldman, and presents an excellent, balanced and thorough examination of the events leading up this tragedy.

the Secret Plot to Kill McKinley John KoernerThe Secret Plot to Kill William McKinley, written by local Buffalo author John Koerner, summarizes the actual assassination and does little to provide original information on any of the participants.  Despite the title, no plot is ever proven or decently explored.  The second half of the book relates anecdotal supernatural occurrences at sites loosely connected to the assassination.  In most cases they are connected only in that they exist in Buffalo.  The only interesting piece of information provided was that Dr. Roswell Park was performing surgery in Niagara Falls at the time of the shooting and was unable to return in time to perform surgery on McKinley.

A conspiracy?  Probably not, but it’s interesting to consider what could have been had that not been the case.

Muttonchops and Third Parties, Buffalo’s (Small) Part in Changing the World

Lafayette Square

Lafayette Square

Previously Published on BuffaloSoapBox

Just in case you were wondering, on this day back in 1848, Martin Van Buren was nominated for President by the Free Soil Party right here in Buffalo.  The nomination took place at the party’s convention in Lafayette Square, then known as Court House Park in a joint celebration of the party’s formalization.

The name of its first candidate should sound familiar as Van Buren had already served a term as President of the United States.  He also sported the best set of muttonchops the highest office in the land has ever seen.

Martin Van Buren Arguably the most impressive set of mutton chops ever elected President.

Pictured: the most impressive set of muttonchops ever elected President.

The Free Soil Party was incredibly short lived and drew what little power it had from New York.  It formed in response to the Democrats refusing to endorse the Wilmot Proviso, which would have outlawed slavery in new territories gained from the Mexican War.  Free Soilers believed that free men working free land created the greatest moral and economic system possible, and addition to working to prevent slavery in new territories, worked to overturn existing laws.

They were able to put up only two candidates for president while around; first with Van Buren in 1848, and then John P. Hale in 1852.  They failed miserably in both elections, unless you count the Nader they pulled by splitting the vote in ’48 that put Zachary Taylor in office.

Millard Fillmore

Millard Fillmore

Taylor has the distinction of dying in office from a stomach ache after attending a picnic, giving Millard Fillmore his first shot at the captain’s chair.  I hope you at least recognize that name.

Free Soil did manage to put two Senators and fourteen Representatives to Congress during its run, which was ridiculous given their limited influence, but even with that they never pushed past a meager third party standing.  In 1854 Free Soil got together with the Whigs and formed the Republican Party.

Since the Free Soilers were originally unhappy Democrats, their involvement in the new party built a bridge to pilfer more antislavery Dems away from that party.  Just to keep things rolling, that would be the Republican Party that a few years later elected Abraham Lincoln.

While the Free Soil Party wasn’t able to change the world on its own, despite its official start in Buffalo—really, how can you go wrong there—it did  snake the best politicians from the existing parties to end slavery.

So, I guess Buffalo gets to take credit for that, right?

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