A Secret Life sets the record straight on the sex scandal that nearly took down a president.
The child was born on September 14, 1874, at the only hospital in Buffalo, New York, that offered maternity services for unwed mothers. It was a boy, and though he entered the world in a state of illegitimacy, a distinguished name was given to this newborn: Oscar Folsom Cleveland. The son of the future president of the United States - Grover Cleveland. The story of how the man who held the nation’s highest office eventually came to take responsibility for his son is a thrilling one that unfolds like a sordid romance novel - including allegations of rape, physical violence, and prostitution.
The stunning lengths that Cleveland undertook to conceal what really happened the evening of his son’s conception are truly astonishing - including forcing the unwed mother, Maria Halpin, into an insane asylum. A Secret Life also finally reveals what happened to Grover Cleveland’s son. Some historians have suggested that he became an alcoholic and died a young man - but Lachman definitively establishes his fate here for the first time.
In this gripping historical narrative, Charles Lachman sets the scandal-plagued record straight with a tightly-coiled plot that provides for narrative history at its best.
©2012 Charles Lachman (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
I am an avid eclectic reader.
From the title of the book I thought this book would be a muckraker. Instead Charles Lachman set forth a well researched statement of the facts from both sides of the claims against Cleveland. Grover Cleveland was born March 18 1837 and had to go to work to support his family at age 16 with the death of his father. He moved to Buffalo NY to work for an uncle. He studies law and became a lawyer. Buffalo at this time was a wild dangerous frontier town. Cleveland like most of the men when to the saloon after work at dinner, drank beer, smoked cigars and played cards until bedtime. He was the D.A. of Buffalo the mayor and then the governor of New York. It was not until he ran for President that the scandal was published in the newspapers. I found the comment Cleveland, made to his staff, when the scandal broke "tell the truth" should be the backbone of all crisis management. No matter if the claims he raped Maria Halpin then had her baby taken from her and raised by someone else is true or not. His behavior of having her committed to an insane asylum was poor judgement. Lachman also covered Mark Twain's time in Buffalo as a newspaperman covering the scandal. Another quote by Cleveland I thought telling of his character was as follows "Sensible and responsible women do not want to vote". Of course that was a common thought by men of the time. Cleveland married the daughter of his best friend. Cleveland and Frances Folsom married in the white house during his first term. Cleveland was the only president to see separate term as president. I was pleased with the ending of the book as Lachman carefully tied all the loose end up including what happened to the boy Oscar Folsom Cleveland. I will not reveal information about the scandal you need to read the book and make up your own mind. Joe Barrett did a good job narrating the book.
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