Sobel's "For Want of a Nail": lives of those we know as US presidents?

Discussion in 'Alternate History Books and Media' started by 1940LaSalle, Feb 19, 2019.

  1. 1940LaSalle Member

    Feb 2, 2006
    Southern New Jersey
    Note to moderators: I put this here because it's speculation based on existing AH fiction, and I couldn't figure out where this might otherwise go. If this is in the wrong place, please (a) move accordingly and (b) advise where it went. Thanks.

    Anyhow...presuming that the events in the late 18th century played out as Sobel would have them, what of those we know as US presidents IOTL? While I don't have the book at hand, I recall that George Washington was allowed to retire to Mt. Vernon in what one might term Nixonesque semi-disgrace, while John Adams and (I think) Thomas Jefferson were among those executed for treason. That accounts for the first three.

    I'll throw out a few suggestions and invite others to contribute:
    • Ulysses Grant parlayed his knowledge of horses and equine husbandry to become one of the premier dealers in those animals in the middle decades of the 19th century. Moving to northern Indiana, he entered a partnership with the Studebaker brothers. A Studebaker vehicle pulled by one or more Grant horses was a byword for excellent, reliable working transportation. In the last years of his life, Grant saw the potential of the engines pioneered by Benz and others, urging the Studebakers to invest in internal combustion engine development, and outfitting their vehicles with those engines. The Studebaker-Grant truck, first available as an experimental vehicle in the mid-1890s, proved wildly popular and successful, leading to the emergence of Studebaker-Grant as North America's premier truck and commercial vehicle manufacturer.
    • The Reverend Woodrow Wilson, Ph. D. emerged from Presbyterian church pulpits in Virginia and the Carolinas to become one of the foremost Calvinist theologians in the world by the early 20th century. Wilson's Salvation, Sanctification and Sense has become the foundation for mainstream latter-day apologetics in the Presbyterian church. Beginning in 1911, he was the chair of the department of apologetics at Princeton Theological Seminary, a position he held until his death in 1931. Dietrich Bonhoffer commented that he would not have had the necessary inspiration for his writings had it not been for Wilson.
    • While there is nothing to really rival Kramer Associates for its worldwide influence on industry and technology, its sometimes rival Hoover Industries Ltd. may well be the closest analog outside of the United States of Mexico. Founder Herbert Hoover developed his mining engineering firm with vertical integration, leading to smelters, steelmaking, and heavy equipment manufacture. It's difficult to imagine the landscape of the Confederation of North America without Hoover projects (e.g., the Sir John Dickinson bridge spanning the Delaware River between Delaware and New Jersey; the Central Railroad of New Jersey tunnel under the Hudson linking New York City and the rest of the Middle Atlantic provinces), or other projects without Hoover-built earth-moving equipment.

    Take it from there.
    Whiteshore, UCB79, mudhead and 3 others like this.
  2. HammerofWar Writer

    Feb 7, 2016
    Sammamish, WA
    Washington was given life in prison.
  3. Odinson Plus Ultra!

    Nov 27, 2018
    I haven't found a copy of the book, though I do want to read it.
  4. lordroel Well-Known Member

    Aug 25, 2006
    If you can read it, its a great book
    UCB79 and Odinson like this.
  5. merlin Well-Known Member

    Feb 17, 2007
    I have - incredibly detailed, which is good in one way, but does make it bit heavy going try to read it. Though fascinating the integration of Native Americans.
    UCB79 and Odinson like this.
  6. UCB79 Bookworm, 1st class

    Oct 8, 2017
    It is the AU to end all AU’s!

    I noted Lincoln got a one-sentence mention as a noted lawyer. Perhaps he is later eleva-
    ted to the Supreme Court Of the Confeder-
    ation Of North America(though he does not
    serve with any great distinction on that body).
    EbolaMan131 likes this.
  7. CapitalistHippie Peace, love, and free markets.

    Apr 11, 2018
    I feel like Teddy Roosevelt, assuming his family wasn't already in the United States of Mexico, would seek to move there given his imperialist and adventurous tendencies. He might've ended up dying in obscurity in one of the wars of expansion.