A Review of Robert A. Woods’ “The Preparation of Calvin Coolidge”

Prep of CC Woods

Our friend over at The Best Presidential Biographies has offered his review of Robert A. Woods’ campaign biography of Calvin Coolidge. It is refreshing not only that fascinating contributions in the Coolidge corpus are being reviewed once more but also that the reviewer is reminding us of a work that treats its subject with respect and candid appreciation. This is noteworthy because so many biographies approach their subject with an ingrained hostility as if to say to the world this is someone I want you to dislike and despise rather than learn from and admire. It is enjoyable, for all its limitations, that the late Mr. Woods’ book approached Coolidge with this frank appraisal. It is an approach that would glean much more from Coolidge than he has undeservedly received in ninety years. Mr. Woods’ point, that Coolidge’s level of preparation before entering the office of President was exceptional and set him apart from most, though we agree, not all our Presidential leaders, has merit. He was immensely trained to take up the office and reminds us, in many ways, of the virtues of being ready to serve the nation. The current candidates for the Presidency would do well to examine this book.

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