Alexander Hamilton - Ron Chernow (2005)

Chapter 34. IN AN EVIL HOUR

The mighty provisional army that Alexander Hamilton was trying to muster was based on a simple premise: that a hostile France, having spurned negotiations with the United States, might embark on war. That premise seemed far more questionable during the winter of 1798–1799. The French realized they had blundered in the XYZ Affair and did not wish to antagonize President Adams any further. After John Marshall and Charles Cotesworth Pinckney returned from France, the delegation’s third member, Elbridge Gerry, dawdled in Paris. Like most Republicans, Gerry worried that war with France would drive America into Great Britain’s embrace. Gerry was a notoriously cranky personality. Small, squint-eyed, and argumentative, hindered by a stutter in debate, he had a talent for both offending and mystifying people. (He favored two capitals, for instance, with a dazed Congress shuttling between them.) “Poor Gerry always had a wrong kink in his head,” Abigail Adams observed.1 For all his crotchety eccentricity, however, Elbridge Gerry had a warm admirer in John Adams, who felt oppressed by the mounting cost of military preparations and public disquiet over the property taxes enacted to pay for them. So when Gerry told Adams in October 1798 that the French desired peace, Adams took him seriously.

Hamilton and his confederates in the Adams cabinet tended to brush aside such tidings as cynical, tactical maneuvers by the French. “Such inveterate prejudice shocked me,” Adams later wrote, though he himself had earlier been skeptical of French overtures. “I said nothing, but was determined I would not be the slave of it. I knew the man [Gerry] infinitely better than all of them.” Adams had no doubt who was leading the campaign to discredit Gerry: “No man had a greater share in propagating and diffusing these prejudices against Mr. Gerry than Hamilton.”2

In early December 1798, with both Washington and Hamilton present, Adams made a somewhat conciliatory address to Congress, declaring that the French government had “in a qualified manner declared itself willing to receive a minister from the United States for the purpose of restoring a good understanding.”3 Many Federalists were aghast that Adams held out an olive branch to France, while many Republicans still found the president too hawkish. As architect of an army designed to rebuff the French menace, Hamilton was naturally ambivalent about anything that appeared to lessen the danger. He insisted that if the French threat had subsided, it was only because of military efforts undertaken thus far. Hamilton told Harrison Gray Otis that if negotiations did not take place in earnest by August, the president should be given authority to declare war against France. Nonetheless,

Adams leaned toward a diplomatic solution, and Secretary of War McHenry apprised Hamilton that in reviewing the new army’s progress with Adams the president “seemed to insinuate the affair need not be hurried.”4 Hamilton saw that sluggishness in organizing the army stemmed from Adams himself and told Washington that “obstacles of a very peculiar kind stand in the way of an efficient and successful management of our military concerns.”5

Because the new army was headed by his rivals, Washington and Hamilton, it brought out all of Adams’s competitive instincts, suspicions, and unappeasable vanity. One day in early February 1799, Theodore Sedgwick, the incoming Federalist Speaker of the House, raised with Adams the seemingly innocuous question of whether Washington should bear the title General in the new army. This ignited a temper tantrum in the president. “What, are you going to appoint him general over the president?” Adams asked, his voice rising. “I have not been so blind but I have seen a combined effort, among those who call themselves the friends of government, to annihilate the essential powers given by the president.”6 These outbursts were transmitted back to Hamilton.

Then, on February 18, 1799, President Adams stirred up a still greater political tempest by taking what David McCullough has justly praised as “the most decisive action of his presidency.”7 He sent a messenger to Vice President Jefferson, who read aloud in the Senate a short but startling note from the president. Having decided to give diplomacy a second chance, Adams had nominated William Vans Murray, the American minister at The Hague, as minister plenipotentiary to France. It was a typical Adams decision: solitary, impulsive, and quirky. Before springing this decision, he had not conferred with his cabinet, who had previously warned him that such a move would be an “act of humiliation.”8 “I beg you to be assured that it is wholly his own act without any participation or communication with any of us,” Secretary of State Pickering told Hamilton.9 Time was to vindicate the enlightened nature of Adams’s decision, but the manner of making it only aggravated tensions with his cabinet members. When they proved skeptical about French peace overtures, Adams decided to question their loyalty. “He began to suspect a dark treachery within his cabinet, a cabal that sought nothing less than the annihilation of his constitutional powers,” wrote biographer John Ferling.10 Yet Adams stuck with his strange decision to both retain and ignore his unreliable cabinet when he should have either consulted them or fired them.

Adams’s decision also shattered any semblance of unity between many Federalists and the president. When a thunderstruck delegation of senators asked Adams to explain the Murray appointment, he grew brusquely combative. As Pickering related, the moment they announced the purpose of their visit, “Mr. Adams burst into a violent passion and, instead of giving any explanation, he upbraided the committee as stepping out of their proper sphere in making the enquiry.”11 Theodore Sedgwick and the president ended up shouting at each other, with Sedgwick attributing Adams’s decision to “the wild and irregular starts of a vain, jealous, and half frantic mind.”12 After these wounding confrontations, Adams beat a hasty retreat to Quincy and stayed there for seven months, sometimes buried in the collected works of Frederick the Great. Federalist Robert G. Harper of South Carolina said that he hoped that, en route to Quincy, the president’s horses might run wild and break their master’s neck.

Adams’s diplomatic initiative threatened plans for a grand new army, and Hamilton said tartly that it “would astonish if anything from that quarter could astonish.”13 Both the style and substance of the presidential turnabout bothered him. He thought the decision came not from careful forethought but from “the fortuitous emanations of momentary impulses.”14 He believed that Adams should have consulted his cabinet and that any negotiations should have occurred on American soil.

Hamilton had a low opinion of William Vans Murray, a Maryland lawyer. “Murray is certainly not strong enough for so immensely important a mission,” Hamilton stated, and he lobbied to have him incorporated into a three-man commission.15 Hamilton prevailed, and Adams agreed grudgingly to have two envoys accompany Murray: Oliver Ellsworth, chief justice of the Supreme Court, and William Davie, the Federalist governor of North Carolina. For loyalty’s sake, the Federalists supported this commission, but the damage to party unity was severe. Adams had again flouted the Federalists in his cabinet and in Congress and had jettisoned the one issue that had united the party: the threat of Jacobinism. Henceforth, it was no longer self-evident that Adams would enjoy unanimous Federalist backing in his 1800 reelection campaign. Troup echoed many Federalists when he said, “The late nomination of the President for the purpose of renewing negotiations with France has given almost universal disgust…. There certainly will be serious difficulties in supporting Mr. Adams at the next election if he should be a candidate.”16 Rumors made the rounds about the president’s erratic behavior, with some even questioning his sanity.

In another shift that boded ill for Hamilton, George Washington cooled perceptibly in his enthusiasm for the new armed force. Had the army been raised right after the outcry over the XYZ dispatches, he told Hamilton, there would have been no trouble gathering recruits. “Now the measure is not only viewed with indifference, but deemed unnecessary by that class of people” who might have served.17 With each new letter to Hamilton, Washington sounded more dubious, beginning one message on this pessimistic note: “In the present state of the army (or, more properly, the embryo of one, for I do not perceive from anything that has come to my knowledge that we are likely to move beyond this)…”18

Despite his dismay, Hamilton persisted with plans for his army, however bleak the chances it would ever materialize. He worried that Napoleon might attempt a sneak attack on an American port and that the country would be caught off guard. He got bogged down in bickering about petty details, telling McHenry that he was “disappointed and distressed” by a shipment of cocked hats ordered for one regiment. He lectured him pedantically that cocked hats must be cocked on all three sides: “But the hats received are only capable of being cocked on one side and the brim is otherwise so narrow as to consult neither good appearance nor utility. They are also without cockades and loops.”19

The depression that had afflicted Hamilton the previous fall worsened, and he turned moody and snappish with McHenry about his procurement of supplies. Ever the perfectionist, Hamilton complained that he was starved for funds and felt plunged back into the worst days of the Continental Army. Aside from Philip Church, he had only one secretary and had to handle much of the correspondence by himself. What was unusual for Hamilton was the haughty, almost sadistic, tone that he took when writing to his longtime friend McHenry. These bilious outbursts make for painful reading, with Hamilton sounding like a stern schoolmaster fed up with a doltish pupil. “The fact is that the management of your agents as to the affair of supplies is ridiculously bad,” Hamilton told him in one letter.20 He constantly pointed out errors in McHenry’s procedures and never spared his feelings.

Complicating matters was the reluctance of Treasury Secretary Wolcott to provide money for equipping the army. McHenry told Hamilton that he and Pickering had “not been able to remove any one of the prejudices entertained by the Secretary of the Treasury against the augmentation of the army.”21 “It is a pity, my dear sir, and a reproach, that our administration have no general plan,” Hamilton replied. He made clear that he still meditated assorted military adventures: “Besides eventual security against invasion, we ought certainly to look to the possession of the Floridas and Louisiana and we ought to squint at South America.”22 Once upon a time, Hamilton had encouraged the cabinet to defer to Adams. Now he broke ranks and encouraged outright resistance. “If the chief is too desultory,” he told McHenry, “his ministers ought to be the more united and steady and well settled in some reasonable system of measures.”23 As if competitive with Adams and blatantly envious of his power, Hamilton became more zealous in pushing his views and interfering in internal cabinet politics. By late June 1799, he told McHenry more or less openly that if the president did not hold correct opinions, he should be ignored.

If Hamilton incontestably betrayed Adams, the reverse was also true. Congress had authorized the president to boost the army by more than ten thousand men. Yet Adams had scarcely lifted a finger to help Hamilton raise these new regiments, and a scant two thousand men were enlisted by summer’s end in 1799. Hamilton never reached even half the number that he was legally authorized to muster. By October, many troops had not been paid for six months, and a shortage of money threatened to halt recruiting efforts.

As if such setbacks weren’t enough, Hamilton had personal money problems. Despite his low pay, he had been unable to take on lucrative new legal clients. “I cannot be a general and a practicer of the law at the same time without doing injustice to the government and myself,” he told McHenry.24 He laid out money for fuel and servants for his army office but did not think he should have to pay for the new office that he needed. “You must not think me rapacious,” he told McHenry. “I have not changed my character. But my situation as commanding general exposes me to much additional expence in entertaining officers.” To this he added the consideration “of a wife and 6 children whose maintenance and education are to be taken care of.”25 Hamilton felt demeaned, ignored, and unappreciated during his military service under Adams.

Escaping from his duties to Quincy, Adams was also morose and irritable during the spring and summer of 1799. It is hard to comprehend the length of his marathon stay. Adams was tending an ailing, rheumatic Abigail—the previous year he had worried that the affliction might prove mortal—but as president he did not enjoy the luxury of nursing his wife for seven months. Biographer Joseph Ellis has speculated that Adams may have wanted to stall the peace mission until conditions had sufficiently improved in France. Whatever the case, the president’s appetite was poor, he lost weight, and his patience grew short. John Ferling has given this vivid portrait of how overwrought Adams became during this period:

At times he was so irascible that Abigail thought it unwise even to permit him to see state documents. He acted the perfect curmudgeon, snapping at his wife and the hired help and treating old acquaintances and well-wishers in a contemptible and uncivil manner. When General Knox and two others called on him, he refused to engage in conversation, reading the newspaper instead while they stared uncomfortably at one another. One morning a group of naval officers and Harvard students rode out from Boston hoping for an appearance, and, if they were lucky, a few brief remarks by the president. He did appear at his front door, but only to tongue-lash them for their insolence at coming to his estate without an invitation. The men were mortified at the president’s conduct, Abigail wrote, and she was embarrassed for him.26

Prior to the fall of 1799, Hamilton and Adams had managed to avoid a showdown partly by steering clear of each other. Their paths converged in a fateful way that fall. Navy Secretary Benjamin Stoddert implored Adams to terminate his self-imposed exile and return to the capital, where “artful designing men” were trying to subvert his peace initiative with France.27 Adams finally headed south in early October. On his way, he tarried in New York for a harrowing encounter with his son Charles, who had succumbed to alcoholism and bankruptcy. Adams had once chided his son as “a madman possessed of the devil” and dismissed him to Abigail as “a mere rake, buck, blood and beast.”28 Now he vowed to Charles that he would never see him again, and he was to remain true to his word.29 This unfortunate episode could only have darkened the president’s mood before his encounter with Hamilton.

Another yellow-fever epidemic in Philadelphia had sent the government scurrying into temporary exile in Trenton, crowding the little town with government employees and military men. Suffering from a bad cold, President Adams lodged in a boardinghouse and made do with a small bedroom and sitting room. He arrived in Trenton hoping to break a logjam that had developed over the French peace mission. At first, he had been disturbed by evidence of fresh intrigue in the Directory that summer, telling Pickering, “The revolution in the Directory and the revival of the clubs and private societies in France…seem to warrant a relaxation of our zeal for the sudden and hasty departure of our envoys.”30 On October 15, however, in a session that lasted until nearly midnight, Adams gathered his cabinet to confer final approval upon the peace commission. The next morning, he ordered the three envoys to sail by early November. Hamilton decided to hazard one last frantic effort to change the president’s mind, a confrontation that neither ever forgot.

In recounting the origins of this stormy session, Adams claimed that Hamilton had been training his troops at Newark when he learned of the cabinet decision. He said that Hamilton had ridden for two days and galloped unannounced into Trenton in a churlish breach of etiquette. Hamilton’s appearance “was altogether unforeseen, unrequested, and undesired. It was a sample of his habitual impudence.”31 Hamilton’s correspondence shows, however, that by October 8 he was already in Trenton on War Department business to confer with General Wilkinson about western fortifications, and he may well have stayed there. Hamilton denied Adams’s insinuation that he was there as part “of some mischievous plot against his independence.”32 While in Trenton, he heard about the cabinet decision to dispatch the peace mission to France. As commanding general of an army created to ward off a French invasion, he naturally wanted to consult with the president. And as the de facto leader of the president’s own party and a man with a considerable ego, he thought he was entitled to the president’s ear. Adams thought Hamilton was being pushy and overbearing. He regarded his intervention as a breach of presidential prerogative and dangerous meddling with civilian policy by a military man. He also worried that Hamilton wanted to use his new army against his southern foes. Abigail Adams went so far as to fear that Hamilton might stage a coup d’état against her husband’s administration.

The climactic encounter between Adams and Hamilton probably unfolded in a parlor of the boardinghouse where the president was staying. The conversation dragged on for hours. If Adams’s account is accurate, “the little man,” as he called Hamilton, spoke with vehement eloquence and was “wrought up…to a degree of heat and effervescence.”33 Adams probably did not exaggerate: during this period, Hamilton was often agitated, despondent, and gripped by strong emotions. Adams recalled that he reacted calmly to Hamilton, as if indulging a madman: “I heard him with perfect good humor, though never in my life did I hear a man talk more like a fool.”34 Hamilton tried to persuade Adams that changes in the Directory presaged a possible restoration of Louis XVIII to the French throne by Christmas. Adams replied caustically: “I should as soon expect that the sun, moon and stars will fall from their orbs as events of that kind take place in any such period.”35 Adams was correct: Louis XVIII was not to reign for another fifteen years. On the other hand, Adams erred in thinking that a European peace would prevail by winter. “I treated him throughout with great mildness and civility,” Adams concluded, “but after he took leave, I could not help reflecting in my own mind on the total ignorance he had betrayed of every thing in Europe, in France, England, and elsewhere.”36

Hamilton was stunned by Adams’s altered stance toward France. Within the space of a month, the president had seemed to go from deep concern about the changed government in Paris to cavalier indifference. “The President has resolved to send the commissioners to France notwithstanding the change of affairs there,” he told George Washington. “All my calculations lead me to regret the measure.”37 When Hamilton noted that Adams had not consulted his war or treasury secretary, Washington sounded equally critical. “I was surprised at the measure, how much more so at the manner of it?” he told Hamilton. “This business seems to have commenced in an evil hour and under unfavourable auspices.”38

After his meetings in Trenton, Hamilton returned to New York, pausing en route to review his troops at their winter quarters in Scotch Plains, New Jersey. With envoys setting out for France, Hamilton must have wondered how long his inchoate army would last. He blamed Adams’s diplomacy for this threat to his army, but it also lacked the broad-based public support necessary in a democracy. The electorate did not want to pay new taxes or borrow money to maintain an expensive army and feared the uses to which Hamilton might put the troops. Even Hamilton’s most ardent supporters detected waning enthusiasm. Theodore Sedgwick worried that “the army everywhere to the southward is very unpopular and is growing daily more so.”39 Treasury Secretary Wolcott told Fisher Ames that nothing “is more certain than that the army is unpopular even in the southern states for whose defence it was raised…. The northern people fear no invasion or if they did, they perceive no security in a handful of troops.”40 While Hamilton wove fantasies around his army, the American people were fast losing interest in any military preparations. When Adams addressed a joint session of Congress in early December, he issued no new appeals for soldiers or sailors.

The confrontation between Hamilton and Adams in Trenton effectively ended their relationship. Adams could not bear to be hectored by Hamilton, who could not bear to be patronized by Adams. These two vain, ambitious men seemed to bring out the worst in each other. Instead of curtailing his plans, Hamilton reacted with more extravagant dreams. He now gazed at the world through a lens that magnified threats and obscured the chances for peace with France. He composed a long, nearly apocalyptic letter to Senator Jonathan Dayton of New Jersey, setting forth a new Federalist political agenda. This document shows a total loss of perspective by Hamilton, the nadir of his judgment. Some ideas were vintage Hamilton: the establishment of a military academy, new factories to manufacture uniforms and other army supplies, and canals to improve interstate commerce. Other ideas, however, reflected a morbidly exaggerated fear of disorder. He believed his Virginia foes were plotting to dissolve the union and that the country was in jeopardy of civil war. He wanted more taxes to build ships and introduce longer army reenlistment periods. Showing waning faith in the good sense of the public, he wanted to strengthen state militias so they could be called out “to suppress unlawful combinations and insurrections.”41 Formerly skeptical about aspects of the Alien and Sedition Acts, he now gave them full-throated support and ranted about the need to punish people, especially the foreign born who libeled government officials: “Renegade aliens conduct more than one of the most incendiary presses in the U[nited] States and yet in open contempt and defiance of the laws they are permitted to continue their destructive labours. Why are they not sent away?”42 To reduce the power wielded by Virginia, Hamilton even came up with a crackpot scheme to break up large states into smaller units: “Great states will always feel a rivalship with the common head [and] will often be disposed to machinate against it…. The subdivision of such states ought to be a cardinal point in the Federalpolicy.”43

It is difficult to separate this dark, vengeful letter from the setbacks in Hamilton’s recent political life. Under President Washington, he had grown accustomed to great power and deference. President Adams had destroyed this sense of entitlement, and Hamilton never forgave him. The bitter face-off with Adams at Trenton confirmed that Hamilton had lost all direct influence with the president. There had been the further humiliation of the Reynolds scandal, which had mocked Hamilton’s pretensions to superior private morality. He had also been greatly embittered by the pitiless censure of his enemies. His vision now appeared to be so steeped in gloom that one wonders how much depression warped his judgment in later years. The ebullient hopefulness of his early days as treasury secretary seemed to be in eclipse.

By contrast, in these final years of the century, the abiding respect between Hamilton and Washington had ripened into real affection. On December 12, 1799, Washington sent Hamilton a letter applauding his outline for an American military academy: “The establishment of an institution of this kind…has ever been considered by me as an object of primary importance to this country.”44 It was the last letter George Washington ever wrote. After riding in a snowstorm, he developed a throat infection and died two days later. Washington did not live to see the government transferred to the new capital that was to bear his name. Haunted by a fear of being buried alive, he left instructions that his interment in a Mount Vernon vault should be held up for a few days after his death.

Washington departed the planet as admirably as he had inhabited it. He had long hated slavery, even though he had profited from it. Now, in his will, he stipulated that his slaves should be emancipated after Martha’s death, and he set aside funds for slaves who would be either too young or too old to care for themselves. Of the nine American presidents who owned slaves—a list that includes his fellow Virginians Jefferson, Madison, and Monroe—only Washington set free all of his slaves.

Washington’s death dealt another devastating blow to Hamilton’s aspirations. For twenty-two years, their careers had been yoked together, and Hamilton had never needed Washington’s sponsorship more urgently than now. Hamilton confided to Charles C. Pinckney after Washington’s death, “Perhaps no friend of his has more cause to lament on personal account than myself…. My imagination is gloomy, my heart sad.”45 To Washington’s secretary, Tobias Lear, Hamilton wrote, “I have been much indebted to the kindness of the general…. [H]e was an aegis very essential to me…. If virtue can secure happiness in another world, he is happy.”46Not wishing to intrude upon her mourning, Hamilton waited nearly a month before writing to Martha Washington: “No one better than myself knows the greatness of your loss or how much your excellent heart is formed to feel it in all its extent.”47 Hamilton’s heartfelt sadness over Washington’s death only thickened the shadows that surrounded him in his final years.

Briefly, the partisan squabbling ceased as the nation paid homage to its foremost founder. On December 26, 1799, Hamilton marched in a somber procession of government dignitaries, soldiers, and horsemen that escorted a riderless white horse from Congress Hall to the German Lutheran Church, where Henry “Light-Horse Harry” Lee of Virginia eulogized Washington as “first in war, first in peace, first in the hearts of his countrymen.”48 The members of Hamilton’s army would wear crepe armbands in the coming months. Though Vice President Jefferson presided over the Senate in a chair draped in black, he had been alienated from Washington and boycotted the memorial service. The envious Adams found excessive the posthumous glorification of Washington and later faulted the Federalists for having “done themselves and their country invaluable injury by making Washington their military, political, religious and even moral Pope and ascribing everything to him.”49

Adams was right about one thing: the Federalists had relied too much on Washington to heal the fratricidal warfare in their party, and this made them vulnerable after his death, especially with a presidential election in the offing. Many High Federalists around Hamilton wanted to discard Adams; Gouverneur Morris had drafted a letter to Washington right before he died, asking that he run again. Hamilton knew that Washington’s death could destroy the unstable Federalist coalition: “The irreparable loss of an inestimable man removes a control which was felt and was very salutary.”50 The Hamiltonian Federalists faced a knotty dilemma: whether to acquiesce in administration policies they detested or to risk a schism in the party.

Washington’s death left vacant the post of commanding officer of the army, and Hamilton thought he had earned the right to it. “If the President does not nominate” Hamilton, said Philip Schuyler, “it will evince a want of prudence and propriety…for I am persuaded that the vast majority of the American community expect that the appointment will be conferred on the general.”51 Hamilton had struggled tirelessly and at great personal sacrifice to create a new army with six cavalry companies and twelve infantry regiments. But having regretted naming Hamilton to the number-two position, Adams was not about to cede the top position to him, which therefore remained unfilled. Hamilton did succeed Washington as president general of the Society of the Cincinnati.

Time ran out on Hamilton’s military ambitions. By February 1800, Congress halted enlistments for the new army that he was assembling and that had monopolized his valuable time. That same month, Americans learned that Napoleon Bonaparte had eliminated the Directory in November and pronounced himself first consul, in precisely the turn to despotism that Hamilton had long prophesied for France. The fulfillment of his prediction, however, left him stranded in an awkward situation. Napoleon’s coup marked the end of the French Revolution and thereby weakened the case for military preparations against a country that the Federalists had identified with Jacobinism.52Hamilton saw his vision of a brand-new army evaporate: “It is very certain that the military career in this country offers too few inducements and it is equally certain that my present station in the army cannot very long continue under the plans which seem to govern,” he told a friend.53

But as spring arrived, Hamilton still could not surrender his daydreams for the American military. With his hyperactive mind, he drafted a bill for a military academy encompassing the navy as well as the army and another for an army corps of engineers. He refined his guidelines for infantry training right down to the correct pace for marching—75 steps per minute for the common step, 120 per minute for the quick step. Hamilton was spinning his wheels. When Congress gave Adams the power in mid-May to disband most of the new army, he quickly exercised it. By this point, Adams thought Hamilton’s army an abomination and later recalled that it “was as unpopular as if it had been a ferocious wild beast let loose upon the nation to devour it.”54 Adams quipped grimly that if the venturesome Hamilton had been given a free hand with the army, he would have needed a second army to disband the first.55

Hamilton tried to keep up a brave face, but he was heartbroken over his ill-fated corps. He told Eliza that he had to play “the game of good spirits but…it is a most artificial game and at the bottom of my soul there is a more than usual gloom.”56 He was unaccustomed to failure, and here he had devoted a year and a half of his life to an aborted army. On May 22, 1800, he emerged from his tent at Scotch Plains to review his troops one last time before they were demobilized in mid-June. Abigail Adams was present and, despite her dislike of Hamilton, was impressed by his troops. “They did great honor to their officers and to themselves,” she told her sister.57 At the beginning of July, Hamilton shut up his New York headquarters, notified the secretary of war of his departure, and ended his military service. The taxing, dispiriting episode was over in every respect but one: he had not yet discharged his full store of bitterness against the president whom he held responsible for this inglorious end.