tv C-SPAN Cities Tour Visits Rapid City SD CSPAN October 6, 2019 9:00am-10:36am EDT
richard nixon coined the word, not a speech writer, richard nixon coined the word the silent majority, and he happened to win. the next election he ran, he won with more votes and a greater percentage of votes than anybody but, i think lbj in '64 was a hair better, so it worked. >> the watch the full interview, visit our web site, booktv.org, and click on the in depth tap tab. ..
>> later we visit downtown rapid city for a look at their collection of life-size statues of our nation's past presidents . we begin our special feature with the story of calvin coolidge in the black hills. >> we are here in south dakota's black hills in custer state park and we are at the state game lodge which is a 1920s era building that was constructed can several years before calvin coolidge made his summer white house here in 1927 and he and the first lady stayed here for three months from june through september 1927 while they were on vacation.
calvin coolidge took office in 1923 when he was vice president and warren harding died so he served as the last little bit of warren harding's term and was elected to his own term in 1924 and so he came to south dakota in 1927 when a lot of people were speculative would he or would he not run for another term in 1928 and it was widely expected that he would but he came here in 1927 because he was looking for a place to escape the oppressive summer in washington dc and mosquitoes and bugs and attention of the white house. coolidge had vetoed a farm bill and there was a farm depression going on and south dakota was kind of the epicenter of that . crowd prices had reduced during the 1920s in south dakota so the farm block in congress passed a bill called the mcnary allegan farmer release bill and it was, the
plan was to buy up surplus commodities and dump them on the international market and raise prices for farmers. coolidge hated government intrusion in the marketplace so when he did that farmers, ranchers and midwest got really angry with coolidge and the idea took hold that he needed to go somewhere in the west for his summer vacation and so lots of states were considered. wisconsin, colorado, different places but they settled on south dakota. coolidge and presidents before him had a tradition of setting up summer white houses and they had almost always been on the eastern seaboard or close to their so it was unusual for president like coolidge to come this far west but in 1926 south dakota made a failed attempt to attract coolidge to set up summer white house in the black hills and at that time coolidge that it's too far away and he didn't think he'd be able to transact business out here and stay in touch with dc. 1927 he vetoed the mcnary allegan bill and had more of
a reason to come west for his vacation but also south dakota had a legendary former governor and then us senator named peter nor back and he was instrumental in attracting coolidge to the black hills. peter nor back was a big fan of the mcnary release bill and wanted to bring coolidge out here and lobby him about that bill but also we had this mountain called rushmore that there was an attempt to carve mount rushmore a few years ago, no carving had taking place but fundraising was happening and peter nor back was part of that committee of people trying to raise money and attention to carve around mount rushmore and he knew if he could get the president out here it would boost the prospects for that and make it easier to raise money by getting attention to this project and the third reason was nor back to of the huge boost to tourism in the black hills. this was a time when
automobile tourism was just beginning and black holes was trying to market itself as a destination for tourists even though we were a backwater at the time so nor back if he could get the president out here it would be huge for tourism. rapid city would have state lines and papers all over the country and there would be pictures and stories about the scenic beauty of the black hills so nor back made it his personal mission to recruit kelly calvin coolidge to the black hills and did so and was instrumental in getting him to select this as is his summer vacation spot . coolidge got out here in june 1927 and his days were really scheduled. he stayed at the state game lodge generally every weekday morning and a driver would load him up in a car that was a little bit advanced from the model t and drive him over 32 miles of gravel road down out of the black hills and north to rapid city and he had his office in the old rapid city high school off downtown in rapid city so he
went into a converted french teacher's classroom where they had moved in a big mahogany desk and cleared out all of the student desks and he conducted business there and they had a huge set up with telegraph lines and communications equipment they had set up for the summer and he would spend mornings in his office in rapid city and he had twice-weekly press conferences with two dozen reporters who followed him out from washington and then he would be driven back here to the big game lodge at 1:00 every afternoon and he and grace coolidge would have lunch at the state game lodge and in the afternoon they would go sightseeing, fishing and they traveled all over the black hills and saw just about everything there was to see in those afternoons during the three months that they were here. coolidge was obviously nicknamed silent californiahe was a reserved person and in washington dc reporters who covered him new him as a silent character .
kind of standoffish almost and that was so fun, when he came to the black hills he was given a 10 gallon hat by people trying to recruit him to come to their summer rodeo and he wore that 10 gallon hat numerous times andit became part of him . he was given cowboy outfit and a horse by a boy scout troop from custer and he dressed up in cowboy regalia at one point and handed up for the cameras which is out of character for him. his secret service aided him, called it a second childhood he experienced here like he had woken up in a dimestore cowboy novel and he seemed to have a lot of fun so it was a fun is our summer with a president here for three months becoming part of the area. i think my opinion of coolidge was probably like a lot of people when i started the research. if people have an opinion about him at all which ishe's sort of an unknown , silent character and unknowable in a lot of ways though it was
refreshing toresearch this book and find out he really did have a personality . he came out here in the black hills and the most interesting, i leave the book with this story about that summer with coolidge deciding to essentially give up the presidency in the black hills so it was august 1927 . hewoke up in the state game lodge like every other morning and he had breakfast and he was driven to rapid city . he went to his office in rapid city high school and had a press conference as he did two times a week and it happened to be the fourth anniversary of his ascendancy to the presidency and reporters asked him to sum up his first four years in office and he spoke at length about that and ended the press conference by saying he wanted the reporters to come back a little bit later that morning and might have an announcement to make so the reporters didn't know what was going on. he never done anything like
that before but they came back at the appointed time and while they were gone coolidge had written up a note and had his stenographer make a few dozen copies of that note and cut them up into slips of paper. and he brought all the reporters back into his office and he told them all to come up and grab a slip of paper out of his head and they did and opened it up and they saw a simple statement that said i do not choose to run for president in 1928 and that was how he let the world know that he wasn't going to run for president, that simple statement and the reporters tried to press him for more information, more of an explanation and he refused and one of the staffers at the back of the room opened up the door and they all burst out of the rapid city high school run to telephones and telegraph wires and report this news and coolidge just walked out only from that announcement. was driven back here to the state game lodge and hadlunch with his wife . thatwas it . and that was the start of the guy that coolidge was. veryunderstated .
and he that how he basically surrendered the presidency in the black hills by making a terse announcement which set off all kinds of speculation about what did he mean by i do not choose? four months there was speculation he meant that if people nominated him, maybe he would or maybe he wouldn't but he enjoyed watching people story around and try to parse his statements while he remained silent. a lot of people thought he came out to the west to pander to voters that he had anger with his veto of the farm relief bill so people were surprised and confused if he had come out your command political fences, why was he then not running for presidency again but i think in a lot of ways he came out here to repair any damage that he had done to the republican party with his veto of a farmer relief bill . he became convinced that he had done that and theparty could survive himleaving office . the reasons he didn't want to
run again , he had a little bit of warren harding's term after harding died and served his own four-year term. if you want another term, he would've ended up serving 10 years in office that was something that was around the pond by some people but the coolidge's also had a son died a few years before they came out here to the black hills and coolidge and said that sort of took away the joy of thepresidency for him . and so apparently he had been thinking about it and perhaps that decision and then maybe solidified while he was out in the black hills but for whatever reason he just shows up that day and made the decision and nobody except maybe one or two people who were very close to him new that was coming. so it was a really strange thing to have happened in a little high school in alittle classroom in rapid city . calvin coolidge is a really on the underappreciated role with mount rushmore so that idea was text a couple of years before coolidge came to the black hills and they had raised some money and had recruited dustin berglund who
was thencarved in stone mountain georgia . he left that project unfinished, pure and work on mount rushmore in 1927 when calvin coolidge came to the black hills, no carving had been started. it had a dedication ceremony in 1925 but they haven't been able to get theproject going you taken a drill bit to the mountain yet . though calvin coolidge comes out here and boredom who was a flamboyant character made a concerted attempt to recruit the president to come to another dedication ceremony at mount rushmore. he hired a pilot to fly over the state game lodge and drop a wreath essentially inviting the coolidge is the mount rushmore . so coolidge eventually agreed to go to what they called a consecration ceremony because it already had a dedication ceremony so in 1927 while coolidge was here he was
driven to keystone which was a little mining camp essentially at the baseof mount rushmore and because the road was in such poor condition up to rushmore , he rode a horse the rest of the way up , or snake missile showed up to mount rushmore to the base of the mountain and they had directed a wooden plank platform there and where coolidge gave a speech and during that speech , coolidge said that the effort that was undertaken to carve mount rushmore basically entitled the people who were doing it to the support of the federal government which was a big deal because coolidge was a guy who was a real miser with the federal budget and questioned everything down to the amount of pencils the government was buying. it was a real budget cutter so for him to come out here and say the federal government should give money to a project to carve bases into a mountain was something and it really set the project onintroductory . though he did that, it received attention all over the country and during that ceremony bergman scaled the side of the mountain and was
hung over the side of the mountain and applied the first drill bit to mount rushmore while coolidge watched so coolidge after his vacation in the black hills went back to washington dc and after his last couple of weeks in office he signed a bill that gave mount rushmore its first $250,000 in federal funding was matching funds and that opened the federal spigot and it ended up taking a long time. not rushmore wasn't finished until the 40s but coolidge got started and a lot of the mount rushmore historians if you read the book carefully coolidge a lot of credit for getting mount rushmore going at a time when the future definitely was not certain. coolidge had a lot of visitors that came and he interacted with a lot of people at his office in rapid city high school so hoover who was a commerce secretary at the time came out here and visited coolidge in his office . general john purging who had been a world war i hero came
out and visited coolidge here. general leonard wood who he is named after came out here to visit. charles lindbergh it a flyover. that was earlier that spring lindbergh and on his flyover across the atlantic and he was on a barnstorming tour across the country. he flew over the game lodge while the coolidge's were here so rapid city was really thrilled with the attention and the celebrities that came to see coolidge while he was here and he met with a lot of everyday people. south dakota citizens, south dakota politicians and he did make several visits with native americans in the rapid city area. he visited the rapid city indian school which was a boarding school or native american children. he also took the journey to the pine ridge indian reservation which is about 40 or 50 miles east of here. for south dakota and it was an honor that you coolidge chose south dakota for people in the tribe, this had been theirland .
they profited from the 36 years earlier so some were excited about the visit, others were not . and he was while he was out here went to a ceremony in deadwood where some native americans ceremonially adopted him intothe sioux tribe . gave him a address, traditional headdress andgave him his native american name . so he was welcomed by some but there were others who resented that some native americans did that and didn't think that should have been done. coolidge never came back to the black hills. there was an effort years later on one of the anniversaries of his visit to get grace coolidge to get come back here. shedid not either but it was a one shopping . eisenhower did come back to the state game lodge in the 1950s and stayed here not nearly as long but there was another presidential visit to the game lodge later area if you look at the exterior, it does look similar to what you would have seen in 1927 except back then it was just
basically a large house that the coolidge is inhabited there had been hotels added onto the side of the game lodge. if you go inside the facility has been renovated so that it probably doesn't look a lot like what the coolidge is experienced. inside the door there are two portraits of calvin coolidge and grace coolidge that were painted during the summer of 1927 and are still here. it was funny during research because we live in an era now where forpresident , if he goes golfing a few times it's almost a scandal. why isn't he working and how much time is he golfing -mark president coolidge spent weeks a mornings working while he was here andthat was it . for three months he was on vacation every afternoon, all summer for three months and as far as i can tell in the research that was not a national scandal. it wasn't even something that people really raised an issue with or not angry with. it was understood that a president needed time to get away. and needed time to relax.
and get away from the strains of the office. totally different world back then and now. you can imagine if the president did that today , just said i'm going to disappearinto the wilds of south dakota for three months , that probably wouldn't be accepted like it was back then so it was interesting at a differenttime for sure. this is such a unique chapter of south dakota history that a lot of people don't know . maybe because coolidge isn't usually one of the more prominent presidents historically. so i think people would be surprised to know that a president did come with and live in south dakota for three months. and did have as much funas he did . so i just had a fun time discovering more layers to the story and all the experiences that the coolidge's had here. and knowing that when we come out here to the game lodge and when you drive back throughout the city you're tracing his route and the history is palpable . and just i said, a unique
chapter of history that we will neversee repeated . i guess what i would like people to understand about coolidge and south dakota in the black hills when they read my book is that he found such, he had such a wonderful time in the black hills that brought him out of his shell and exposed him as maybe a different kind of person and people were used to read and i just love how being here in the black hills and seeing the natural beauty here and being away from washington brought out a different side of coolidge, a playful side, kind of a second childhood as i mentioned. and i think that shows what a special place we havein the black hills . and it's just such a unique factor of history that we will never see repeated. i don't imagine a president will ever come and live in the black hills for three months while they are sitting president so it's a unique, quirky, fun period of history that had never happened before and will never happen again and so many interesting
things happened that summer though i hope people get out of my book that this is an out of body experience for calvin coolidge to come out here and be a different person and enjoy himself and open up tothe people of the west and the black hills . >> are look at rapid city continues as we hear from author and newspaper publisher tim gallego about his book and left behind: the darkhistory of indian mission boarding schools . >> the first boarding school was built on the catholic boarding school in1888 . and it was built on land that was deeded to thecatholic church . right now at the board of admissions and he had a strong feeling that we had to become educated in order to survive in the world that was
coming so that was his primary motive of donating lands and allowing the catholic church to come onto the reservations. i don't think he ever of the long-term consequencesof what was going to be so many indian children . i started school at the holy mission boarding school when i was five years old and i was left there at the mission and back then it was run by a jesuit priest and franciscan nuns so it was a whole new world to us coming from the smallcommunities out on the reservations . and a frightening experience to begin with. but i think probably one of the best things they did is that catholic priests and nuns have a good way of educating so i think the educational part of it was
the most beneficial thing i got out ofit . otherwise, i stayed there until i was in the 11th grade and i could not take that anymore. when i reached that grade i ran away one sunday morning. while church was going on area i told the priest i had to go outside and get a breath of fresh air because it wasn't feeling good and i kept on running and ran all the way to pineridge village 400 miles away. >> vaidya run away? >> i couldn't stand the discipline. and i think the outrageous way they tried to destroy everything that we knew culturally. took away our language, took away our traditions. our culture even, our spirituality. so guys were educating us and acclimating us to a whole new way of living. i wrote that book, the gentleman left behind 17 years old leave it or not. i was on a two trip and
headed for korea. and i had a spiral notebook. and i guess i was still feeling which i didn't know then the trauma of having come out of that school as i ran away when i was 16 and went in service when i was 16. memories were still vivid of the years i spent there. so i start writing a book and primarily a book of poetry. and one of the dealers of the portion had a college degree and he said these are good poems that you should keep writing so i wrote them all as many as i can bring back from memory. and i sent the transcript to a gentleman named, he'll come to me. anyway, he had a foundation
in san francisco and was called the indian historical society. and he was one of the few publishers, native american heritage. rupert costa was his name. and he wrote the poems and called me and said i've got to put these into a book. that a lot of us went to for this experience and your bringing back a lot of terrible memories for me included written things in there. i wrote about going to the movies on sunday nights. that was archie recreation. one time wecould escape the reality of the world and go into it . a world of hollywood movies. and i wrote about how we had even to pay for that in that if we had more than 10 demerits, they would line us up on sunday night before the movie started and if you had
more than 10the merits, the police would be standing there with a book and read your book . eisai to the wall. that meant that the one thing we really enjoyed at the movies, we couldn't see if we had more than 10 demerits so i worked at the movie selling popcorn and pop with a gentleman named misterfry . and i wrote about one time mister bryant said it's too quiet in here for the movie starts, we need to get some ink to entertain the people coming in earlier. so he hooked up a phonograph player into the, where the projection room was. and just half an hour or so the movie starts, before it started to put on strauss walters. so one day i was up there just putting the music on and i happened to notice the screen was right where they showed the movie. so i ran up to the state and
adjusted. the lights were still on and the blue danube waltz was playing. and so i looked back at the audience as the lights go on and i saw all these people. young and elder sitting there with their eyes closed, listening to the blue danube waltz and that's a scene that hasnever left my mind . >> why was that important? >> it was just the peacefulness that i knew it could bring the people that were troubled . this was back just after the depression and things were really hard on the reservations and yet they found their way to pay $.50 and see a movie every sunday night . so after i started a newspaper and a lot of the kids that had gone to school during the years that i was there, one time i got a call from a young lady who's dead now. she said we'd like to have
you come and talk to us. so they were all sitting in the bar when i came in and they were all drinking since eight or nine ladies then. and each one of them told me the experience of how theyhad been physically abused not only by nuns, sexually abused by priests . and i put some of that in the book. the reason i did it because mister shirley was one of the girls that was raped when she was there. and she was only about nine years old. >> it was hard for me to write that but i felt it had to be written. and someone had to know it happened. and i think that probably upset some of the priests at the holy mission. i bought some of that stuff like that very and hidden all these years.
but the children knew about it, we all knew what happened . i have never stopped writing columns about the boarding school. i just wrote one sunday,today . i wrote about down at the immigration camps down at the border, doctors are doing treatment of some of the children that were taken on their parents and they noticed something that they compared the ptsd. posttraumatic syndrome. and the kids are going through the same ptsd that veterans from the war had. and it struck a chord with me and i thought you know what, i remember those days, the symptoms they describe. kids crying constantly, extreme loneliness. i said i saw that when i was wet boarding school. and i wanted them.
how many of those kids came out of those boarding schools and were suffering from what they didn't knowwas a disease , ptsd. and so there's a correlation there in my mind area so i just wrote about that today and it takes me back to the boarding school days. >> the person that wrote this book, is he still there today and if he is, how has he changed? >> when i was 17 years old, i never really had a chance to be a teenager because i went straight from age 17 right straight tocorreia . and saw the most horrific thingswhile i was just a boy . so that was probably a part of my childhood experiences i think, made me pretty fearless about life itself.
but having to see opportunitiescome to me that i never thought i could ever have , i had something i probably never would have had if istayed on the reservation . i had the g.i. bill and with the g.i. bill i was able to go to college. >> .. >> .. >> i was able to sit with my classmates at harvard and educate them. they wanted to know a lot of the
things that were happening in the country, they had no idea about. we had students from ghana, ecuador, nairobi. they were all interested, and they had no idea, you know, what an indian reservation was. we still spoke our own tribal language, so those experiences, i think, helped me to reach this point in my life. i'm still here, i'm still healthy, i'm still writing, can and i'm 85 years old, so i feel good about what i have contributed to native
wild bill was dead august 2nd, 1876, and brought up here, just buried down the hill there, but then his body was moved to right over here. so wild bill is just behind us. calamity jane left, came back, left, came back. died in 1903 in a small town just over the hill. the people went up this and grabbed the body, brought it back and planted it next to wild bill. of course, calamity jane -- a storyteller -- would always say that her and wild bill were lovers, perhaps more than friends. undoubtedly, wild bill knew her but probably didn't associate with her. nevertheless, they're buried together right behind us in the
cemetery. so deadwood is a big tourist town today. part of that tourism is based on the gold rush, part of it really on this cemetery where wild bill and calamity jane lie. now deadwood, from the start of the gold rush, 1876, was founded april 18 is 76, officially, up until the mid 1880s was the largest community in the black hills. the first sheriff was seth bullock, and i did a lot of studying on the first sheriff in part because he was the first sheriff. i wanted to connect that violence. and he was only sheriff for nine and a half months. when south dakota -- or excuse me, dakota territory took control of the black hills, february 1877, when congress removed the black hills from the great sioux reservation because we were, you know, the gold rush was illegal, it was an invasion
of the sioux reservation, bullock came in august 1876 initially in violation of the treaty of 1868. but by february 1877, congress removed the black hills from the sioux reservation, and bullock was appointed the first sheriff. so for nine and a half months he's sheriff, and he's the first guy trying to impose haw and order. well, as i said, he had about one violent death a month under his watch. and what did he deal with amongst those, he had to deal with the first stagecoach robbery. when johnny slaughter is blown off a coach out here, that sets the run for a lot of stagecoach robberies. he dealt with saloon violence, and there were people getting shot in saloons. not a lot. you know, wild bill was killed before bullock arrived. he dealt with claim jumpers, and when he was here in 1877, there were more people than claims to
be claimed, so it became competition and gunfire. but bullock was, i always call him a reactive sheriff. he wasn't going out trying to solve problems before they existed. when he heard gunfire, he went running after it. [laughter] so he didn't really solve any crimes, he didn't stop, i don't think, much violence except by being a sheriff. and interestingly, being sheriff only nine and a half months distressed bullock. he came here from montana because he thought he was mr. law and order. he thought he'd hold political office, but people didn't like him, and he could never win election. they didn't like him probably because he was the first guy to try to establish law and order. his vision of being a lawman paved the way with his defeat. and he became a entrepreneur. he didn't want to pan gold too much. he wanted wealth, but he was in a business with his partner, saul starr, and they ran a
>> they go trading at fort meade, then they get shipped to camp thomas in georgia. and there they trained and there the they stayed. theodore roosevelt was capturing san juan and kettle hill in cuba, south dakota -- they were calls the grigsby's cowboys, stayed in georgia. the war ended. and they were disappointed, they were displayeded, and they saunteredded back to the -- saunteredded back to the black hills. well, after the war roosevelt loved to get together with his roughriders and any other veteran. from then on bullock's a big republican, goes to conventions, they establish a closer relationship. we have bullock as a true man of the frontier. you know, he spent years in montana, was a pioneer in deadwood, ran ranches and mines. and here's roosevelt, this
wannabe rancher, wannabe cowboy. you know, he's a new york patrician, plays cowboy for a few years before he loses everything on his ranch, and bullock comes to symbolize to him this medieval west, the western spirit. so he's kind of this man that keeps roosevelt grounded in this sentiment he has for the western spirit. so they become close because of that. in 1900 when mckinley and roosevelt are running for office, roosevelt takes a train ride across south dakota, and bullock joins him on the train for a week. and roosevelt liked to have old roughriders with him to, you know, found the charge and all that. but bullock rode with him and helped him campaign. and there's a somewhat famous story, they stopped at butte, montana, and butte, montana, was william general its bryant -- jennings bryant town.
and bullock was worried or when teddy roosevelt took the stage, that he'd get a very nasty reaction. but indeed, roosevelt took the stage, and the crowd was quiet and respectful, and roosevelt later said he thought his or to have call skills had the crowd mesmerized where, in fact, bullock had kept the crowd quiet while roosevelt spoke. now, everybody says that story's true. why not? [laughter] roosevelt rages for mckiply to appoint -- mckinley to appoint bullock forest supervisor. he got the black hills as an independent forest, and for four and a half years he runs the forest. and bullock was a man that roosevelt wanted. he wrote him a letter said you're the man who has the character, the man that should run that forest, and bullock applied his western ways. as he said immediately, i don't
want a lot of eastern dudes out here trying to be my rangers. and he went back east and lobbied, said i want to appoint my own men, men that can ride horses, that can camp under the open stars, and he got that authority. he had about 12 rangers under his authority, and he picked them and got them out here. give ard pip cho came to admire him, and when he went back to washington to speak, he believed it was a balance out here. you need the forest to keep the water viable, and the forest and the water would keep the industries viable. very, very important figure at the time. when roosevelt's president, he appoints him u.s. marshal. and for six years he's u.s. marshal. he's getting back there in years at this time, and the p papers congratulate him, and bullock says that's the proudest moment of my life, being u.s. marshal. but as the papers point out also, this is a job that bullock
can retire to. he didn't work as hard as probably some u.s. marshals can did. he did, however, go to washington a lot. in 1909 roosevelt had a retirement party when he left the presidency, and he's one of the 31 invited guests that go to the white house, part of the cabinet. many of them are cabinet members and other people, but bullock's amongst this handful of people from the west that roosevelt wanted to make sure were there. it fell to bullock to give a trophy to roosevelt at the end of the dinner. it was a cougar statue, and it was covered with flowers. and the story goes that bullock was to uncover the cougar and say words to roosevelt, but he became so emotional, he couldn't say anything, just pushed the flowers aside. bullock said later i've always been a bad hand at saying good-bye. so, you know, they have that kind of friendship where bullock was classified by roosevelt as my ideal, typical american. and that's what he thought of
this man, of the west, this person that bullock became. and then when roosevelt died in 1919, kermit roosevelt wrote it was a terrible blow onset is bullock. he says, he wrote that seth bullock was a hero worshiper, and his great hero was my father. so when roosevelt passed away, bullock negotiated with the pioneers, black hills pioneers -- which he was quite involved with -- and they bought land on the top of a mountain called sheep mountain, got it renamed roosevelt mountain, and they built a 35-foot tower out of native stone, roughly built. and they built it out on this mountain which could see to north because bullock wanted it to look out on the plains to the north which roosevelt loves so much. then this month later, we're here in deadwood in september 2019, seth bullock dies in september of 1919.
dies just down the hill from mount mariah in his home on van buren street. he's hauled up the hill where we are, the way here. doesn't stop at wild bill's grave, they take him to the top of the hill, outside the cemetery there's a place of ground up there he arrangedded for the black hills pioneers to buy for him, and he's buried up there. and at that location, you can look over and see roosevelt tower. so he could look at the tower, and the tower could look back at him. sol it's a place of honor on the hill, and he can look down on this doe main. now, what -- do main. what did bullock mean to the black hills and deadwood particularly? bullock exemplifies the transition of the black hills. he came out in the heart of the frontier period, the wild west if you will, was this guy who was a sheriff before it was settled, you could say, was still the wild west. then he got, became this entrepreneur when you could do entrepreneurial things and make
money. and then when he couldn't do that any longer e, he stepped back and became part of the federal control that became the black hills. when the feds took over the black hills, he was involved there. so he became this transitional -- he lived in early black hills frontier and in modern deadwood, modern black hills, and he helped that transition alone. he may have helped transform it in his way, when he was forest supervisor and u.s. marshal and did good for the entire black hills, but he probably isn't the great transformational figure that other people can claim title to in deadwood. >> join us the first and third weekend of each month as we take booktv and american history tv on the road. to watch videos from any of the cities we visit, go to c-span.org/citiestour and follow us on twitter@c-span cities. the c-span cities tour, exploring the american story.
>> the c-span cities tour is exploring the american story. join us the fist and third weekends of each month as we take booktv and american history tv on the road. and to watch videos from our travels, go to c-span.org/citiestour and follow us on twitter @c-span cities. we now continue our feature on rapid city as we take you downtown for a look at the city's collection of life-sized statues of past u.s. presidents. >> right now we are physically inside the presidents information center which is the home base for the city of presidents foundation, and rapid city has come to be known as the city of presidents. this building was bought by the founder of the foundation as a place for visitors to come and learn more about them. and as you can see, we're surrounded by the miniatures of
the sculptures that are displayed in downtown rapid city. downtown there are full-sized bronze statues, is and we chose to have the statues depict something about the presidents. they're not just stationary statues with them standing with their hands in their pockets or on their hips, but it actually shows something about the president's life. so as you see them here, you see them in various poses that tell something about their story. if you notice on the walls where our biography's hung x that's how the inception of the book began. when mr. purdue decided to do this project, we -- he asked me if i would do personal biographies for all the presidents being displayed in the center. and as i began to research, the city of presidents is an
apolitical group, so we cannot do anything politically. but i realized the importance and the depth of the personal lives of all the presidents. so with mr. purdue's approval, i started writing about their personal lives. there's nothing here political about them in the biographies. so as i began to do it, i said there is so much, there is so much information that people really need to know that they don't really know about the presidents, and that's how the book evolved, because it was, there were just stories that needed to be told x. the stories are funny, they're sad, they're poignant. it's amazing how there is common threads that run through the presidents' pasts. and scandals have been going on forever. and the importance of religion in prime ministers' lives -- presidents' lives and the value of mothers and hard work and the work ethic. so that's how it actually came,
came to be. more than 20 years ago i was the director of marketing at a historic hotel in rapid city. outside the hotel during the winter months we had on display the figure of lincoln. and mr. purdue, who is a local businessman and philanthropist, he and his wife were friends of my husband and i. and he said, you know, nancy, i see people coming here having their picture taken, and wouldn't it be great for the economic development of rapid city if we could put presidents on every corner. and two years later, that following february, he met a woman who is an artist at a gallery, and he chose to use south dakota artists and the sculpture dream began. he had a dream, and iting began and we went forward. it wasn't really popular at first, but they chose to put
four presidents every year for a ten-year time, presidents would ultimately be on display in ten years. and so when we started talking about this and i began to study the human interest stories just evolved. when we knew the evolution of the statue placements, we called them planting them because they're put into the ground. and so we knew, and the idea from the foundation was that we began with the two most contemporary presidents and the two most historic. so, of course, we started out with george washington and john adams, and then at that time it was ronald reagan and george herbert walker bush. and and what they did was they took the two presidents from both ends, is and we just worked back until we got to center when we were all there. i knew what they were going to do and how -- so i knew that the
the -- where the presidents were going on the, so i went ahead and began the research on them. then when we got closer to the end, i would interview with the artist to get the artist's concept because i needed to know what that statue meant, because that is part of the book. there are colored pictures in the book to show the statue. so that's how it kind of evolved. so first of all, they are all local artists, and they took it upon themselves. the process was that they would pick the president they wanted to do, then they would submit a sketch, just a drawing, submit if it to the board. if the board accepted that concept, they would then go to mockettes. and if it was approved, then they could go to the full bronzes. sometimes there were small changes made, and other times they were accepted as they were. then we went to bronze stage,
they were cast and then they were, we had unveilings every year. i is have to say that this year when we did president obama up veiling -- unveiling, we had to do it at a full theater, and it was standing room only. they were packed to the rafters. so the city has really taken to this. they're very proud of what we have, and so that's the evolution from a scratch pad to a bronze statue. you can see one of my favorite presidents, which is president taft, who was a huge man. the important thing about the statue is you have to walk around behind him because traditionally president taft was the one who started throwing out the first baseball during national baseball season. and he loved baseball, so he's standing there with the ball behind his back ready to throw
out the first ball, and tradition has it he would still do that to this day. he picked up this ball buzz he just -- because he just couldn't do it, and the most famous story about him is what a gentleman he was. some of them are quite rules rouse. humorous. some of them are kind of poignant, but you and i discussed and i just met a gentleman in wisconsin whose favorite president was calvin coolidge. and, of course, as we all know, he was known as silent cal. and the famous story the about him is that he had a summer white house here in the black hills, and he was dining at the lodge one evening when a lady approached him, and she came up and said, mr. president, see my friend over there? i just made a bet with her that i could get you to say more than two words. and he looked her right in the
eye and he said, you lose. well, first of all, no self-respecting south dakotan is going to wear cowboy boots with their pants stuck inside. [laughter] calvin coolidge is standing next to a statue that was actually designed and given to him as a gift by mr. hamill who is a south dakotan who is in broadcasting, and it was a gift to mr. coolidge. and he's got the hat, he's got the outfit on. any thought the president would ever claim to look like president coolidge is by off base because -- [laughter] that is so not south dakota. president tyler, in his early years, he was quite an accomplished violinist. and he really wanted to pursue his career in music, but his father said you'll never make
any money as a musician. and he said you have to make a choice between law and music. and, but the father said i will not sport you if you continue -- support you if you continue with your musical background. and so he chose to go into politics. so when the or artist researched his life, he realized that tyler truly would liked to have been a violinist. and when you see the statue, we depicted him playing the violin. and we contacted his family and they said that would have meant so much to him that he is now remembered in statue as a violinist. and so that's what's out there. the artest who decided to do president eisenhower, because of his strong military background, he decided to depict him in his military group form. you see the statue, you see that there is a ground map beneath
his feet that has the two theaters of conflict that he served. so you see him standing between those two war territories. and on d-day, all the veterans recognize him for that. my story about eisenhower is that we remember him as sort of a very quiet, stern, thoughtful military man. but when he went to west point as a cadet, he got in a lot of trouble. he got demerits for dancing wildly and carrying on on the dance floor. well, one time he was attending an event, and he did something inappropriate. and an upper classman came up and caught him. cadet eisenhower, i want you to report to my quarters in one hour in full dress code. so time goes by, there's a knock
at the door, the upper classman goes and opens the door, and there's cadet eisenhower in his full dress coat and nothing else. wanted to depict john f. kennedy, they realized when he was happiest was when he was with his children. he had, between his health issues and the mood of the cup at that time, he was -- when he had time with his children. is so they decided they wanted to do one with john kennedy and his son john jr. john jr. truly had a favorite toy which was a little airplane. the statue shows president kennedy bending over and handing this little toy airplane to his son john. we didn't know as history evolved how prophetic that really was. in those days the politicians
controlled the press. they were told what they could and couldn't do. use the example of fdr, president roosevelt. as you know, he became so disabled, he was -- he had to be in a wheelchair or use leg braces and cane. they had an agreement with the press that they would never take a picture of president roosevelt when he was being assisted in either way, either using canes, braces or a wheelchair because they wanted to keep that from the people. the presidential statue here, as you see, of president roosevelt was that he was wheeled up to this podium. this is the day he gave the day of infamy speech, and he had to show his strength for the country. and so he was wheeled up to the dais. and if you look at the statue, you can see his caning is behind the platform, and you can see -- the artist was so subtle in showing the leg braces through his trousers. if you don't look for them, you
don't see them. it was the subtlety of his physical being. and i remember mr. purdue working with that artist when he was still in clay, when he was working with the clay. he wants to emphasize that those hands had to show the strength. he was holding on to that podium, that's what was keeping him up. but he, to hoe the strength that he had -- to show the strength that he had to address the country and transmit his strength to them that we, this country was going to be okay, that this was our day of infamy. and so, and don kept saying they're not strong enough, they're not strong enough until we got it just right. and so -- but getting back to this, again, in those days the press was given the information that they could share. it was not, it was not like it is today. it's just an entirely different
generation, an entirely different mindset than in those days. it was done pretty discreetly. there is a school that teaches american history to incoming immigrants, and very often we are using this book now to teach american history to non-americans to teach them what the presidents as real people were and as real men. they had their frailtieses. they went through tragedies. this were a lot of parts of their -- there were a lot of parts of their life that we just didn't understand. there was a lot of alcoholism. there was a lot of depression. as you know, or abraham lincoln saw his own funeral. as he said one night, he actually saw the funeral through the train and the tragedy that happened with him. and so i think that with the book i think people given to
understand -- begin to understand our leaders as fallible human beings. >> the c-span cities tour concludes in rapid city, south dakota, with a visit to cheyenne ranch where we'll hear from author and wildlife biologist dan o'brien about the importance of creating a natural environment for raising grass-fed, free-roaming buffalo. >> we are about 35 miles south but mostly east of rapid city, south dakota. and we are right on the edge of the badlands and up against the pine ridge india reservation, that's lakota people. you can see the cheyenne river in the distance, and that's the boundary between us and the
buffalo gap national grasslands which we have a permit out there to run our buffalo. even though i have been writing for a long time and you end up writing about, of course, what you know. and that book, "wild idea," just reflects the years that i spent basically getting displaced in order to run a ranch out here. and it has to do with mostly the land, mostly the outdoors but also a little bit of the social part of the living out here in a very red state. then, of course, there's the family which is the thing that holds a lot of this -- the glue that holds a lot of these ranches together. my first book about buffalo -- i've written three now, and i swear to god i'm not going to
write any more -- but the first one is called buffalo with broken heart. and it was, again, autobiographical, and it was the story of getting our first dozen buffalo. and what we were thinking. then we grew that herd up to, i forget, maybe 50 or something like. that and then we moveed -- rented another piece of ground and could run a few more buffalo. and then we moved to this place. and we've been building this herd up to about a thousand buffalo now for the last 20 years. and that's -- we're maxed out. so that's how big this herd and this ranch is going to be. started out with a very small 27-acre thing, and it didn't take me long to figure out what was missing. there was a lot of things missing, a lot of species
missing. but the big thing that was missing was buffalo because this land was shape by buffalo. you know, everything co-evolved together. and when you take a big herbivore like that out of a land of grass, you're going to have all kinds of imbalances. and that dawned on me about book three. and so i did everything i could to move up to a piece, to a ranch that was on a scale of of that buffalo could survive and we could have a suite of species finish particularly plants and birds. i'm a big bird guy. but you can't do it on 20 acres because these birds use tens of thousands of acres. and the buffalo use tens of thousands of acres. and so slowly, very slowly, i
worked up to a larger ranch and larger ranch and kind of settled here. and the reason i settled here is because this land behind me is the national grasslands which is really kind of the red-headedded stepchild of the forest service. they inherited it. there's no trees to speak of out there, but they got out -- got it anyway. and this ranch came with a permit to run cattle out on that 20,000 acres or something. and so we went through all the step steps. we had to go through the environmental planning to put buffalo out there, which seemed odd to me, but that's what we had to do. and we did get that permit switched over to buffalo. and so this ranch with the deeded land and the permitted land and the leased land and all the complicated stuff when you put it together, it's about
35,000 acres. and that's about enough, about -- very roughly -- for a thousand buffalo. and now, i think, when you get to that level, you're at a, you're at a level where you can actually work with species in a big country like this. if you're new jersey or something, maybe a little wood lot will do for a particular species. but out here everything travels, and everything -- most things travel great distances. and it's really, it evolved, and the buffalo are, of course, the big species here. and we try to let our buffalo -- we want them to be in a place where they can walk in a straight line for three miles. that's kind of our -- and then, of course, we started thinking about food and how do you pay for a ranch like this because
it's a big bill at the bank. and so we thought, well, let's try selling buffalo meat to support the comeback, and the buffalo have got to pay their way back. and so we started a little meat business called wild idea buffalo company. and that has gotten to be sort of a big thing, and it takeses up a lot of my time. i didn't know what a spread sheet was until we started that business. but i've had to learn. i've got a great family that helps out. the whole family's involved, and we employ about another -- i think it's 24 people now. so there's a lot of balls in the air out here. we do the biology, and we do the ranching, and we do the business. and i write books. >> what is it that the buffalo do for the landing?
>> well, i think you have to -- first of all, you have to believe in evolution to even understand this explanation that's coming. but buffalo, grass, birds, all the species out here co-evolved. and so they depend on each other. the buffalo will come in and graze down a certain area, the birds will come in because that's the right height of grass they need to nest in, etc., etc. we have, and, you know, from the antelope and the deer and the prairie dogs and then, i don't know, we have a suite of probably, oh, i don't know, maybe 75 birds that live on this place. and those all evolved to fend on each other. and when you take one out, even if you take a little insect out, it makes a big dent in an
ecosystem. and what we're trying to do, which is probably impossible, is to bring back that ecosystem to completely functioning system. and to do that, we need to put as many of the native species back out here as we can and to keep the invasive species out. now, humans are invasive species, so that's why there are six people living on this 35,000 acres. that's about right. buff havealo have been living ot here for 300,000 years, and they had been getting along just fine without people. without people to feed them, supply them water, etc., etc. so our underlying a approach is to leave them alone, is to let them be buffalo.
we never had a veterinarian on the place. we don't put them in statutes -- sometimes you have to, but it's not like cattle where they're constantly being harassed and beat up and put in trucks and hauled. and what we do, i looked first in this business, i looked at buffalo feed lots where almost all buffalo would end up as meat go to feed lots. and, of course, you know, a feed lot, basically they're putting them in confinement, they give them corn and other, other products which they don't eat, until humans got here -- until europeans got here, actually. and i thought, you know, they're standing in their own waste, they looked pretty sad in a feed lot. and i said if i have to do this, i'm not going to raise buffalo. and so we went about trying to figure out how what we call
harvest them. not slaughter them, but we harvest them in a way that we respect them as a species on a level with us. which is a native american idea. we're not the first ones to think of that. so we, we're not going to harass them and put them in a -- run them up an alley and put them on a truck and send them to omaha to be slaughtered. we're just not going to do that. okay, so what are we going to do? because you do have the bank every year, you've got to send some money in there. so we developed two trucks. one truck is semi, a 53-foot trailer, and we turned that into a cooled processing plant. and the other truck is a three-quarter ton pickup truck that can pick a buffalo up, a
dead buffalo up. and we drive out into the herd which is very easy to do, and, you know, they get used to you. they're not afraid of you. we drive out there, and we have a couple guys who are -- you don't want them shooting at you because they're pretty good. and we have an inspector, the meat inspector rides with us. we shoot a buffalo, back up to it, pick him up, take him to the processing plant. and those buffalo, we've done studies on that, discuss hormones and those kinds of things. we've had buffalo that that we sent on purpose to a plant and buffalo that we harvested our way. and, of course, the levels are off the chart in the meat of the ones that were sent to the plant and just flat on the ones that have lived and died right there on that spot. the other animals don't seem to even mind. it's amazing. and so that was a big, big
breakthrough. this was the way to respect these animals, and it fits in with what we're doing. because we're out here for this ecosystem. and, you know, we want to respect it in every way. i am not a big believer in the kind of capitalism that's come on particularly in agriculture. i don't think that it has really any respect for the land or the animals. and so we just, we're not going to fall in with those guys. that's all there is to it. and so we have this whole system. we raise the animals, we slaughter the animals, we process the animals, we ship 'em out, we sell 'em to people all across the country. and it's a good response. so that really is where the revenue comes in. now, it costs more to do it this way, but we feel it's worth it,
and our customers feel -- yeah, we'll pay a little more for that, you know? not supporting industrial agriculture. we'll pay a little bit for that. where people understand that, they almost always say, yeah, yeah, what the heck? if of course. because people know that industrial agriculture really is killing us, and i mean that literally. and, of course, we're getting big enough now that those industrial agriculture people with the marketing people are starting to take shots at us, which is a good thing because now we, we're taking a stand the for the environment, we're taking a stand for this landscape. >> how do you know what you're doing here is working? >> i don't know what i'm doing, that's -- [laughter] this is the all, we're trying is all we're trying to do. there's no -- for what we're doing, the way we're raising
buffalo which is completely different than the way anybody else ever raised buffalo before, and and our business gets supported by that. we're running on autopilot. there's no template for this. and we make mistakes, and it gets tough, but we think that it's worth doing. we think that it's worth trying. and maybe we can find a few things that'll help other people. i spend a lot of time, the winter time out here is brutal, by the way. [laughter] and so i read and i write. and i end up written what i'm thinking about and -- writing about what i'm thinking about and what i'm living. i'm working on, i don't know, it's either my 14th or my 15th book, okay? and those books, if i had to -- you know, there's some that are about falconly which i'm very
interested in, some that are about birds, some that are about buffalo and people. and what i guess i'm not consciously trying to do this, but in the bulk of my work it's really about understanding an e to system. and that ecosystem is the great plains and to help people understand that everybody has an ecosystem, and we're all part of it when we know it or not. and we certainly have to admit it and embrace it. of and that's what i i try to do here. >> twice a month c-span's cities tour takes booktv and american history tv on the road to explore the literary life and history of a selected city.
working with our cable partners, we visit various literary and historic sites as we interview local are historians, authors and civic leaders. you can watch any of our past interviews and tours online by going to booktv.org and selecting c-span cities tour from the series drop-down at the top of the page. or by visiting c-span.org/citiestour. you can also follow the c-span cities tour on twitter for behind the scenes images and video from our visits. the handle is @c-spancitys. >> here's a look at some of the events booktv will be covering this week. on monday look for us at bradley university in peoria, illinois, where sean kelly and frank mockerman will discuss the congressional tenure of robert michael of illinois. and then on authorize -- thursday we'll be in washington,
d.c. and that same night in new york travel writer paul the rue will talk about his journey it is along the u.s./mexico border. most of these events are open to the public, and if you're in attendance take a picture and tag us @booktv on twitter, facebook or instagram. >> here's a look at some books being published this week. in "the war for america's soul," former deputy assistant to president trump, sebastian gorka, argues that the president has reenergized the country and that the left is trying to undermine his efforts. susan rice, former u.n. ambassador and national security adviser to president obama, reveals pivotal moments from her career in "tough love." in "hate incorporated," matt taibbi. and in unfollow, megan phelps roper chronicles growing up as a
member of the westboro baptist church. also being published this week, richard dawkins explains why he became an atheist in "outgoing god." fox news' gregg jarrett argues the i mueller investigation was weaponized to hurt president trump in witch hunt. neil degrasse tyson provides answers to questions on the cosmos that he was received in "letters from an astrofizz vis." 9 and andrew me rants argues about the alt-right. watch for many of the authors in the near future on booktv on c-span2. >> booktv recently went up to capitol hill to ask members of congress about their reading lists. >> congressman congressman gerry from virginia's 11th congressional district, what are you reading? >> well, i've read a lot of really wonderful books.
the one i'm reading right now is max hastings new book on the history of the vietnam war from 1945-1975. this is terrific. i'm not yet finished with it, but i'm getting close, and it, i mean, it's just gripping x. a lot of it is also told from the vietnamese point of view, both the viet cong and the north seat a that please, what it was d vietnamese, what it was like on the other side during this horrific war. very critical of both communist tactics as well as american and french tactics during the french period and the american period of the vietnam war. but it is terrific history. if people want to understand what happened in vietnam and that legacy, this is the one volume to read. it is just a great book and brilliantly written. necessary history if you're a history buff at all. this is a book called "the field
of blood" by joanne free match, and it's actually a history of violence in the congress, here in the united states congress. and she does a great job of pointing out that, you know, the famous incident of presstop books beating -- preston books beating charles sumner on the senate floor as a premise to civil war an often-cited incidence of violence. but as she points occupant, there's a long history. and she tells the story through the memoirs and notes of the clerk of the house who actually memorialized a lot of what happened. and it was fistfights, it was duels, it was threatened duels, it was group fisticuffs and violence or near violation, but it was a lot more common place in the congress than we like to, want to believe about ourselves.
not a good revision, and she does a great job of telling that history. this book by linda gordon is the second coming of course the kkk. nay than bedford forrest -- [inaudible] the second coming of the kkk really takes place around world war i and grows in the 1920s. and the kkk became a force to be reck arenned with politically. it -- reckoned with politically. it controlled many state governments including the state of indiana, the state of oregon. their reach was very alarmingly great, and they sort of organized themselves like a sort of social club. they finally came to ruin by the end of the '20s because of corruption. but not because of the
odiousness of their political message. and this is definitely a modern history of the kkk in the 20th century that is definitely worth reading, and it has some alarm ing lessons for today because some of the rhetoric and some of the activities of the renewed white supremacist movement in the united states eerily resembles what happened in the 1920s in our country. and that's a place we don't want to go back to. a great book, oh, i really enjoyed this book. this is the story, scarface and the untouchable. scarface was the nickname for al capone because he had been injured in a big brawl, a violent incident i believe when he was in new york and had a big scar on his face he was always self-conscious about and tried to cover up. but this is the story of al capone and elliott ness and their titanic struggle to try to control organized crime in
chicago. and it's a great social history. capone was a very complex figure. he was not, you know, a you know-dimensional -- uni-dimensional cartoon character. he had enormous influence in chicago in the 1920s until he went to jail on a tax charge. and this is the story of how the federal government tried to organize itself to deal with organized crime. although they finally got capone, in many ways it didn't solve the problem because frank -- [inaudible] succeeded capone and ran the outfit for decades thereafter. so it didn't dismantle organized crime, but it finally did get sort of the number one target both for the fbi and the federal government. but this is a great story and social history of prohibition
and how lawless really local government was at the time in chicago. great storiful -- great story. this book was written in the 1930s called the jab bins, and it's the story of haiti in the revolution in the 18th and early 19th century in haiti that won a haiti its independence as the first independent black country in our hemisphere. and really a great story. you know, it was a very violent time and involves, you know, the french. revolution and napoleon. and, obviously, what happened in haiti, actually, is what motivated napoleon to deal with thomas jefferson and sell the louisiana territory to the americans because he was being bled dry with the
revolution going on in the haiti. but what's interesting is this book is written in the 1930s, and so it's written while segregation is very much alive and well here in the united states and while colonialism is, you know, thriving in africa. and so many of his footnotes are reflecting on the reality of the world racially in the '30s while reflecting on what haiti really meant. and it's a fascinating lookback at that historical period. can and what a heroic character and, ultimately, tragedy you -- tragic character for black people everywhere. the bible on earth was a fascinating book by finking stein and silverman, and it's two archaeologists in israel who are looking at modern looker logical -- archaeological finds and comparing it to account accounts in the bible. and maybe not surprisingly, they
find the bible takes a lot of liberty with the fact on the ground. and a lot of things didn't happen the way they were described or didn't happen at all. that doesn't mean they're not valid stories, but the history, you know, the idea that the bible is historically inerrant is simply not true, not borne out by archaeological finds, and it's just a a fascinating account. if you like archaeology, i really enjoyed this book. ten caesars about barry strausss is sort of going from the first emperor, augustus, to one of the most famous, constantine, and these were transformative figures in the history of ancient rome. the influence they exerted, the power they secreted can and how important they were for their time in spreading and trying to protect our dominance in the
mediterranean world. and fascinating stories, some of them bad characters, of course, is and you can see it was in many ways planting the seeds, ultimately, of rome's destruction. but really wonderful history and great stories if you like ancient roman history, and i do. this is really a great find. ralph peterson's written a series of novels on the civil war, and i, you know, it's hard to find a novel on the civil war that surpasses "killer angels" about the battle of getties burg, so i generally shy away from novels about the civil war. i like to read history of it. but ralph peters has done a great job of getting the history right and really kind of describing what it was like for the ordinary soldier, the terror of the battlefield, the horrors of the battlefield, the courage it took, the fear they obviously
faced and the conditions they had to live with as well as the broader history of what happened tactically and strategically. and the first one of the six he's written is cain at gettysburg. and it was actually really good, and i'm looking forward to reading his other back books as. frank and al, you know, for somebody who loves politics, and i do, frank and al is a great book. it's written by terry galloway, and it's about the friendship and then the rivalry between two great characters in the 20th century, al smith and franklin delano roosevelt. and as often happens with close political friendships, the one eclipsed the other, and the one who was eclipse clipsed9 didn't like -- eclipsed didn't like it too much and never quite got over it. ..
the friendship and for gave him but it is a very interesting friendship and incredible social history. working conditions for working men and women, how smith was a great preamble to franklin delano roosevelt's new deal. great political history and well done. finally i want to highlight fdr and the jews, alan littman being here at american university. a lot of people get the history wrong about fdr and franklin diller roosevelt during the nazi period about what he could
do and what he didn't do. this book is a more sympathetic portrait of what franklin delano roosevelt was dealing with and what he tried to do. a lot of pressures were not very pretty in terms of anti-semitic pressures and he had head winds, constantly pressing the system to allow more refugees into the united states when nativism and huge nativist movement to keep us out of the entanglements in europe led by demagogues like charles lindbergh and those were real forces when fdr was in the white house, many of which were tinged with virulent anti-semitism and he tried to resist that and push the envelope a lot to allow especially jewish refugees into the europe especially children,
didn't always succeed or do it as forcefully as we would have liked but this book is a sympathetic portrait of his efforts. and well done by a topic that is always a sensitive one in terms of our history. that is my account of what i have been reading lately. >> thank you for your time. >> we want to do what you are reading. send us your list on facebook, twitter or instagram, booktv. >> you are watching booktv on c-span2 with some nonfiction authors every weekend. booktv, television for serious readers. >> here are some programs to watch out for this week. are "after words" guest is national security columnist bill kurtz who will discuss china's efforts to become a global military and economic superpower. on sunday we will be live with
naomi klein for a monthly call in program "in depth," she will answer your questions on topics like consumerism, free market capitalism and climate change. on sunday tune in for the 84th annual book awards presented for important contributions to our understanding of racism and appreciation of the rich diversity of human culture. check your program guide for complete schedule. >> david treuer is the author of "the heartbeat of wounded knee: native america from 1890 to the present". david treuer, describe the united states in 1890. >> guest: you start with a hard question. why make it so tough? 1890 was a really important time, strange time for americans generally and native americans in particular. the