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    Честер Артур

    Эту статью мне посоветовал мой знакомый, который недавно приобрел автомобиль, и его тут же заинтересовала http://www.4tochki.ru/disks/catalog_diskov, и он приобрел их по очень выгодной цене. When James A. Garfield died on September 18, 1881, and Chester A. Arthur took the oath of office the following day, reformers were shocked. Andrew Dickson White, an educator and diplomat, remarked: "It was a common saying of that time among those who knew him best, ‘Chet’ Arthur President of the United States. Good God.” Throughout the 1870s America had suffered one scandal after another. Corruption ruled from New York City, with Mayor Boss Tweed, to the White House, with President Ulysses S. Grant. Then Arthur became president, a 176 Chester A. Arthur political boss whose friendly demeanor masked his calculating work for one of the country’s more corrupt machines. The presidency seemed headed for its greatest debasement yet—until Arthur surprised almost everyone. k Chester Alan Arthur was born on October 5, 1829, to William Arthur and Malvina Stone Arthur at Fairfield, Vermont. William had joined the Baptist clergy in 1827 and relocated to a church in Fairfield the following year. Known as "Elder Arthur,” he was a staunch abolitionist. He moved his family often as he served in several different parishes. When Chester was nine, the family settled in Union Village, New York, where he attended school. After Elder Arthur moved yet again and took his family to Schenectady, Chester entered that town’s Union College in 1845. He graduated in 1848 and soon began studying law while teaching school. Arthur moved to New York City in 1853 to join the law office of E. D. Culver, a friend whose abolitionist views reinforced those the young man had learned from his father. There he clerked and studied law, and in 1854, after gaining admission to the bar, he became a partner in the firm, renamed Culver, Parker, and Arthur. A hardworking lawyer, over the years Chester Arthur developed a solid, if unspectacular, track record. His one notable case occurred in 1855, when he represented Elizabeth Jennings, an African American who had been assaulted after refusing to leave a streetcar reserved for whites. He won the suit for her by arguing that her treatment violated a recently enacted law that forbade the expulsion of "colored persons” from public vehicles. She received $225, but more important, as a result of the trial New York City enforced the law and integrated its streetcars. In 1859 Arthur married Ellen Lewis Herndon, a Virginian and the daughter of a navy hero. They had three children, one of whom did not live past childhood. The couple had a strained relationship; his absences were so frequent while he pursued politics that she talked about divorcing him. Nevertheless, after Ellen died in 1880, Arthur mourned his loss and claimed he no longer had a passion for life. When the Civil War erupted in 1861, the governor of New York appointed Arthur as assistant quartermaster general. This put him in charge of feeding, housing, and equipping the many volunteers arriving in New York City from throughout the northeast to fight the Confederates. He worked so effectively that the governor promoted him to quartermaster general for the entire state, a post he held until he resigned in late 1862. Arthur returned to his law practice, and his business flourished as his political contacts expanded. He soon became chairman of the state Republican executive committee, and he supported Ulysses S. Grant for president by heading the Central Grant Club of New York. Grant’s victory in 1868, combined with the earlier election of Roscoe Conkling to the U.S. Senate, boosted Arthur’s political standing. In 1871 Grant needed a competent loyalist to take over the New York Customhouse as collector to replace Thomas Murphy, recently exposed as corrupt. Conkling recommended Arthur, and Grant appointed him. Despite his campaign work, at age 42 Arthur was largely unknown. Yet when he strode into the customhouse, a huge, solid granite building—complete with a vast rotunda and marble columns—that fronted Wall Street, he entered an important and lucrative job. The customhouse collected about 75 percent of all trade revenues flowing into the country and housed about 1,000 workers. As collector he earned more than $50,000 annually, the highest pay in the federal government, and he wielded power surpassing that of most persons in the president’s cabinet. Arthur’s job was to make appointments and removals and to supervise political assessments—that is, collect money from the workers to support the Republican Chester A. Arthur 177 Party. The assessments provided Republicans with $36,000 annually, much-needed fodder for campaign treasuries. The customhouse workers liked Arthur. His sophisticated manners and learning stood out among the local politicians, and he cared about their welfare, fighting hard to protect their salaries against budget-cutters in Washington. Chester A. Arthur thrived in the spoils system that had first emerged several decades earlier under President Andrew Jackson. Federal jobs typically went to party loyalists, who reciprocated with their "donations” and work for candidates. Each election year, hordes of job seekers descended on Washington, besieging congressmen and presidents. Most went away disappointed, while others latched onto their jobs like parasites. Reformers thought the spoils system disgusting. In particular, dissident Republicans, known as Mugwumps, wanted a bureaucracy filled with professionals, largely from the educated elite, and removed from the tawdry reliance on political hacks and retainers—the result, they believed, of a democratic system gone rotten. Stalwarts such as Arthur scoffed at the reformers; one observer said the New Yorker treated reform "with a jocular indulgence as the temporary essay of a few well-meaning visionaries with no practical sense of political needs.” He collected high marks from many Republican leaders. Chauncey DePew called him "one of the most rigid of organization and machine men. . . .” As with other politicians who worked behind the scenes, few outsiders saw Arthur’s activities, and few realized that his power extended well beyond the customhouse as a leader in the Grant-Conkling wing and a faithful Conkling lieutenant. When a new civil service rule in 1872 made it illegal to require government workers to pay into campaign coffers, Arthur ignored it. This resulted in a reprimand from the chairman of the civil service commission. Arthur’s cunning reply was coated with defiance: "Until after the receipt of your letter none of these facts were known to me. Since they became known, I have not thought it either my duty or my right to interfere with such contributions or solicitations, or the use which my subordinates voluntarily make of their own money.” Scandal embroiled the customhouse in 1873. After Phelps, Dodge, and Company used duplicate invoices that undervalued its imports and reduced its tax bill, customhouse detectives told William E. Dodge he had to pay $271,000 to avoid a court battle over the illegal act. Dodge did as instructed but then discovered the invoices totaled much less than the detectives had reported. In short, the bamboozler had been bamboozled, and he denounced the customhouse so vehemently that Congress investigated. Arthur professed ignorance, which was a highly unlikely story, and manipulated his political contacts to avoid testifying before a committee. The scandal, however, led to a law that ended the system whereby informers and customs officials shared in fines or penalties obtained when investigators uncovered fraud. Consequently, Arthur’s income declined. President Grant reappointed Arthur in 1875, and thanks to Conkling’s pull, the Senate confirmed him without dissent. The Northern Budget of Troy, New York, said, "Gen. Arthur has brought so much suavity, good nature, skill, executive ability, and general fairness and uprightness into the discharge of official duties that he has fully disarmed . . . his political opponents.” When Republicans needed money in 1876, Arthur again obliged with funds from customhouse workers. That year he wrote checks to party leaders amounting to $72,000. Yet he prided himself in never engaging in graft to fill his own pockets and in keeping his word and remaining dignified. Many called him the "gentleman boss.” In 1877 Secretary of the Treasury John Sherman investigated several customhouses, including Arthur’s. Sherman uncovered widespread illegal acts, ranging from bribes paid by passengers to get their baggage checked quickly 178 Chester A. Arthur to money paid by companies to avoid duties. When Arthur testified before Congress, he offered a contradictory story, calling the practices that had been revealed commonplace while also saying the charges lacked proof. After a report criticized Arthur and other officials for allowing inefficiency and graft under their watch, and after Arthur’s colleague Alonzo Cornell defied an order that no workers be forced to participate in partisan campaigns, President Rutherford B. Hayes, a fellow Republican but a reformer engaged in a power struggle with Conkling, removed the two men. Conkling exerted his influence, and Congress refused to support Hayes, at which point Arthur wrote his friend: "I cannot tell you how gratified I am at the splendid victory you have won—apart from & way beyond any personal considerations of my own. The whole town is excited by the event & the current of popular feeling is all with you.” Popular feeling actually moved opposite to Arthur’s assessment, and on a second try in 1878 Hayes fired Arthur and Cornell and, with congressional approval, replaced them with reformers. The following year Arthur led the state Republican campaign as chairman of the New York City central committee and the state committee. With Alonzo Cornell chosen to run for governor, Conkling’s Stalwart machine confronted the Democrats. Cornell won, though narrowly. Conkling then thought Arthur would make a good U.S. senator for the next open seat in 1881. That opportunity never came. Instead, in 1880 the Republicans turned to Arthur as a running mate for their presidential candidate, James A. Garfield. A reformer from Mentor, Ohio, Garfield, along with his supporters, thought Arthur would keep the Stalwarts in line and attract New York’s large popular and electoral vote. Conkling, embittered over Garfield having defeated his favorite, Ulysses S. Grant, at the convention, advised Arthur to reject the vice presidential nomination. "Well, sir, you should drop it as you would a red hot shoe from the forge,” he told Arthur. A heated exchange then followed: "I sought you to consult—” Arthur said. "What is there to consult about?” Conkling said. "This trickster of Mentor will be defeated before the country.” "There is something else to be said,” Arthur replied. "What, sir, you think of accepting?” Conkling asked. "The office of the Vice-President is a greater honor than I ever dreamed of attaining. A barren nomination would be a great honor. In a calmer moment you will look at this differently,” Arthur said. "If you wish my favor and respect, you will contemptuously decline it,” Conkling retorted in a huff. "Senator Conkling,” Arthur said, "I shall accept the nomination and I shall carry with me the majority of the delegation.” With that, Arthur defied Conkling, but the wounds healed quickly, and the senator subsequently campaigned for the ticket. Arthur provided crucial support in the campaign. He planned a Midwestern speaking tour for Conkling and Grant, and he collected money from state workers so effectively that it may have been key to the defeat of Democratic presidential candidate Winfield S. Hancock—who lost by fewer than 10,000 votes out of more than 9 million cast nationwide. Although Arthur surprised many during the campaign when he expressed his support for civil service reform, he entered the vice presidency in 1881 committed to Conkling and the Stalwart agenda. He excited public disgust when, before his inauguration, he spoke at a dinner to honor an Indiana Republican. After a few drinks, he said the recent campaign had been won in that state "by close and perfect organization and a great deal of—” at which point the crowd chanted "Soap! Soap!” a euphemism among Republican workers for money. "I don’t think we had better go into the minute secrets of the campaign because I see the reporters are present,” he laughed. "If I should get to going about the secrets . . . there is no saying what I might say.” Arthur’s allusion Chester A. Arthur 179 to the Indiana vote having been bought produced enormous criticism. He committed another mistake after his inauguration when he went to Albany, New York, and lobbied state legislators to reelect Thomas Platt, a Conkling Stalwart, to one of the U.S. Senate seats Platt and Conkling had recently quit. The legislators refused, and many newspapers condemned the vice president for diving so directly into a tawdry state political battle. While Arthur was in Albany, on July 2, 1881, Charles Guiteau shot President Garfield. "It cannot be,” the vice president said. "I hope, my God, I do hope it is a mistake.” Arthur rushed back to Washington amid news Garfield might die within hours. As it turned out, Garfield clung to life for weeks. Arthur never wanted more than the vice presidency and followed every report about the president’s health with an anxiety that caused him to lose weight and withdraw from his friends. When it looked like Garfield might live, Arthur said, "As the President gets better I get better, too.” Newspapers praised the way Arthur handled himself, how he refused to take over temporary powers while Garfield lay ill or to even speculate about a possible Arthur presidency. The New York Times said, "He has effaced himself after a fashion as manly as it was statesmanlike.” When Chester A. Arthur took the presidential oath the day after Garfield’s death, Stalwarts salivated over their prospects. But they found the White House door to be more ajar than wide open. The new president wanted a dignified legacy for his presidency and decided the office required better behavior from him. He often refused requests from Conkling’s cronies for jobs, and though he appointed Stalwarts, sometimes to prominent posts, he removed fewer of the existing bureaucrats than Conkling and others expected. One Conkling partisan said, "We thought he would throw in our direction enough of the patronage to make our work less onerous. On the contrary, he has done less for us than Garfield, or even Hayes.” Arthur distanced himself from the Stalwarts when he supported a continuing probe to uncover graft involving Star Routes in the post office. In the 1870s Congress had begun investigating the routes, established when the government signed contracts with private horse, stagecoach, and wagon companies to deliver mail to remote settlements. Several of the companies, linked to Republican leaders, charged outlandishly high rates for their services. In April 1881 Congress presented President Garfield with evidence of widespread fraud. Arthur ordered the investigators to continue their work and declared no person would be exempt from the probe. He removed from office several federal employees implicated in wrongdoing. Several weeks later the attorney general prosecuted Stephen Dorsey, a former Republican senator from Arkansas (his term had ended in 1879), and Thomas J. Brady, second assistant postmaster general, both charged with conspiracy to defraud the government. The New York Times reported that the "Stephen W. Dorsey gang” had pocketed over $400,000. Defense lawyers prolonged the trial in an attempt to exhaust and confuse the jury, which heard from 150 witnesses. Arthur suffered embarrassment when three letters released to newspapers showed his close relationship with Dorsey and Conkling. According to Thomas C. Reeves in Gentleman Boss: The Life of Chester Alan Arthur, nothing in the trial likely surprised the president—he had worked closely with Dorsey and Brady in the past and in 1880 had even collected $40,000 from Dorsey for the Republican Party. The trial, concluded in September 1882, resulted in guilty verdicts for two minor figures charged along with Dorsey and Brady but a hung jury for the prominent defendants. A second trial followed, lasting from December 1882 until June 1883 and producing 4,481 pages of testimony. The verdict of not guilty stunned Americans. Millions of dollars had been stolen from the national government, with hardly anyone convicted. Evidence indicated the defense had tampered with the jury, but the government failed to prove it. Arthur called the inquiry and trial beneficial for having reformed 180 Chester A. Arthur the post office, but the embarrassing letters had made him appear tawdry. The Democrats also pointed out that the scandals had happened under Republican rule. While the Star Route trials were underway, Arthur damaged his presidency in March 1882 when he nominated Roscoe Conkling to serve on the Supreme Court. Arthur acted out of friendship for Conkling; he wanted to see his mentor’s career capped with a veneer of dignity. The Senate easily confirmed Conkling, but newspapers condemned the president. The Youngstown News Register said, "Better for Conkling that he pass at least a decent probation in the seclusion of private life, and better for Arthur not to force under the nostrils of the American people an unsavory smelling object.” Conkling turned down the judgeship, however, in order to stay with his lucrative law practice. When it came to reforms, President Arthur seemed to take two steps forward and one step back—admittedly an advance where earlier in his career there had been none, but one so frustrating as to anger those who wanted a much cleaner government. He stunned many observers when he took a step forward and announced his support for the Pendleton Act, then being considered by Congress to reform the civil service. Senator George Hunt Pendleton, an Ohio Democrat known more for his groomed beard, meticulous clothes, and polite manners than for any expertise in government, sponsored the act. Arthur said he opposed one part of the proposal that provided for civil service exams but would accept them if Congress wanted them. At first Congress wanted nothing, and the Pendleton Act stalled as the politicians refused to relinquish their grip on patronage. But the 1882 elections changed the picture when reform Democrats badly beat the Republicans. Arthur thereupon reversed himself and said he wanted civil service exams, and Congress finally passed Pendleton’s bill, which the president signed in January 1883. The act established a fivemember civil service commission to be appointed by the president and gave it the power to make rules and begin competitive exams. The Pendleton Act applied only to a limited list of jobs in Washington and only to major customhouses and post offices elsewhere— about one-tenth of the total number of federal employees—but Stalwarts still hated it. Looking back on the national reform movement, George W. Plunkitt, a political boss at New York’s Tammany Hall, commented, "You hear of this thing or that thing goin’ wrong in the nation, the State or the city. Look down beneath the surface and you can trace everything wrong to civil service. . . . This great and glorious country was built up by political parties; . . . parties can’t hold together if their workers don’t get the offices when they win; . . . if the parties go to pieces, the government they built up must go to pieces, too; . . . then there’ll be h—to pay.” Reformers hailed the Pendleton Act and applauded President Arthur when he took another step forward and appointed one of their own as chair of the civil service commission. Yet reformers howled in protest when he took a step back and nominated a Grant crony to be the commission’s chief examiner. Eventually they forced Arthur to withdraw the name. Despite the president’s mixed record, historians believe he handled himself respectably in administering the Pendleton Act. Historians continue to debate the president’s commitment to African Americans. Some say he did little for the race. For example, when the Supreme Court ruled the 1875 Civil Rights Act unconstitutional and Republicans in Congress introduced five bills to save most of it, Arthur supported none of them, causing them to die. Other historians emphasize that Arthur supported southern politicians who defended black suffrage and that in his call for federal aid to schools he stressed the need to fight back illiteracy. Further, he appointed several African Americans to significant government posts and risked his political future by taking an unpopular stand in criticizing the Supreme Court for negating the civil rights act. He went so far as to Chester A. Arthur 181 declare his desire for a new bill and said he would approve anything that strengthened "the guaranties which the Constitution affords for the equal enjoyment by all the citizens of the United States by every right, privilege, and immunity of citizenship. . . .” Nearly every black newspaper supported Arthur and looked forward to his reelection. The president avoided a foreign crisis and stood against nativism when he vetoed a bill that prohibited Chinese laborers from entering the United States for 20 years and that denied citizenship to resident Chinese. He noted that the bill violated an 1880 treaty with China, and he called its section on citizenship undemocratic. Chinese immigrants, he reminded Americans, had contributed mightily to building the transcontinental railroad and developing the West. Yet he soon gave in to nativistic pressure and signed a revised bill that substituted 10 years for the 20-year ban. Arthur tried hard to lower tariffs and open new markets overseas. His tariff commission proposed a downward adjustment in rates, but Congress opposed it. Likewise, his reciprocal trade treaties with other nations, which would have meant more reasonable tariffs, won little support. Despite an honest presidency with achievements that surpassed his most recent predecessors, Arthur found little enthusiasm for his reelection in 1884. His erratic stand on reform and his appointment of Stalwarts, albeit seldom Conkling ones, dampened any support from reformers. At the same time, his backing of the Star Route probe and the Pendleton Act caused the Stalwarts to reject him. Most Americans considered his presidency a mere interregnum between Garfield and the next leader. In short, neither the Republican Party nor the country as a whole rallied around him. For his part, Arthur did not want another term. One observer said about him: "He is a sensitive, almost a timid man, I mean with reference to his responsibilities. He is also a moody man.” His moodiness passed into lethargy, and for good reason: Arthur had been stricken with a serious illness, Bright’s disease. Bright’s infects the kidneys; often fatal, it makes a person nauseous, depressed, and listless. Since the symptoms usually appear well after the infection, Arthur likely contracted it before he entered the White House. On a visit to New York in 1883, he looked ill. "He has grown thin and feeble looking,” said an observer. "His cheeks are emaciated, and he has aged in appearance.” Some newspapers reported the illness, but Arthur never commented on it directly. Quite likely Bright’s contributed to his distaste for the presidency and his desire to return home. Instead of Arthur, the Republican Party nominated Benjamin Harrison for the presidency. Arthur died in New York City on November 18, 1886, a mere 20 months after leaving the White House. No one can mistake Chester A. Arthur for a bold president. Despite differences with Conkling over appointments, he never renounced him or completely broke with the Stalwarts. But he prosecuted the Star Route case, administered the Pendleton Act reasonably well, respected African-American rights, and showed a firm grasp of foreign policy. His record surprised many who thought he would be nothing more than an unredeemed Stalwart, and it makes the cry "Chet Arthur President . . .
    Good God,” more exaggerated than justified.

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