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Item   Title MB Now at Next bid Bids New bid Max bid  
92   William H. Taft  $200 $220 $242 2 You must login to place a bid.

#92 - William H. Taft

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“Wilson is paying the penalty now that he deserves for his utter indifference to the qualifications of men whom he selects”
Description                           Estimate: $800 - 1,000          

TLS signed “Wm. H. Taft,” five pages, 8 x 10.5, personal letterhead, September 16, 1919. Letter to Gus J. Karger, in part: “Considering the mess that Wilson has made, I would perhaps be content with the substitution for the second reservation if they made it clear that the words 'or to interfere in controversies between other nations' referred to Article X…the obstructionists would insist that it relieved us from the obligation of a boycott where there was a plain violation of those covenants of the League which nations enter into not to begin war until three months after a judgment…I have no objection at all of course to the limitation upon the acceptance of a mandate by the United States. A President who accepted such a mandate without a joint resolution of Congress would be very foolish…Wilson is paying the penalty now that he deserves for his utter indifference to the qualifications of men whom he selects. These parlor Bolshevists with whom he has been flirting have shown the utter yellow of their natures in betraying him, but no one sympathizes with him because he has himself to blame for such utter perversion of his appointing powers…I am glad to say that I stepped off the scales just after coming from golf to-day, and weighed, without clothes, exactly 250 pounds. This is the least I have weighed in thirty years certainly, and I feel the better for it. I hope during the coming year I might be able to reduce myself to 240." Taft adds a brief handwritten postscript, "Give my love to Mrs. Karger. I hope you will have a pleasant stay in Cincinnati." In very good to fine condition, with rusty paper clip impressions and erosion to top corner of each page.

At the conclusion of World War I, Taft and his own organization—the League to Enforce Peace, established in 1915—actively supported and lobbied for President Woodrow Wilson’s proposed League of Nations. With the participation of 44 nations, it was officially established via the Treaty of Versailles on June 28, 1919. Despite this wide international success and influential bipartisan support—led by the former president Taft, a Republican, and President Wilson, a Democrat—the United States never joined, primarily due to opposition in the Senate. One main figure in this opposition was Republican Majority Leader Henry Cabot Lodge, who penned twelve 'reservations' regarding the treaty. Taft believed the symbolic membership in the League was more important than the exact nature of the organization, and so supported the measure when Lodge brought it up for a vote on November 19. Many of Lodge's Republicans were against it to begin with, and many Democrats were upset by the compromises made in the newly adopted reservations, preferring Wilson's original plan. As a result, both of these groups voted against joining the League of Nations, effectively ending the possibility of US affiliation. A letter with terrific content in anticipation of this historic vote. Pre-certified PSA/DNA.

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