William Howard Taft declared, "I am sure the automobile coming in as a toy of the wealthier class is going to prove the most useful of them all to all classes, rich and poor." Unlike his predecessors, who made public their disdain for the automobile, Taft saw the automobile industry as a great source of wealth for this country. The first president to acquire a car in office (Congress granted him three automobiles), Taft is responsible for there being a White House garage in 1909.
This is a meticulously researched reappraisal of the oft-maligned Taft presidency focusing particularly on his cars, his relationship to the automobile and the role of the automobile in the politics of his day. Appendices provide information on the White House garage and stable, Taft's speech to the Automobile Club of America and a glossary of terms and names.
William Howard Taft and the First Motoring Presidency, 1909-1913
McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers