Warren G. Harding: A Historiographical Analysis

  • 2014

Warren G. Harding: A Historiographical Analysis

Author:
Thomas Betti
Abstract:

The history of America's twenty-ninth president, Warren G. Harding, is, to say the least, complex. President Harding was sworn into office March 4, 1921 and served only 882 days until his unexpected death on August 2, 1923. The early 1920s, nevertheless, saw the United States at an important junction of agriculture and industrialization, rural and urban. The country was also recovering emotionally from the personal losses from World War I and the Great Influenza epidemic.

As president, Harding had his contemporary critics like any other president, but following his untimely death at age 57, there have been few presidents who are as misunderstood and dismissed in history as Harding. A historiography of Harding shows a wide range of works, but a small number that have critically re-examined the Harding presidency. It also shows that while many works are based on myths, hearsay and innuendos, fewer contained research, facts or deep analysis.