Amiable Scoundrel: Simon Cameron, Lincoln's Scandalous Secretary of War Audiobook By Paul Kahan cover art
Amiable Scoundrel: Simon Cameron, Lincoln’s Scandalous Secretary of War Audiobook
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Amiable Scoundrel: Simon Cameron, Lincoln’s Scandalous Secretary of War Audiobook



by Paul Kahan

  • Narrated by: Michael Kazalski
  • Length: 9 hrs and 47 mins
  • Release date: 01-15-18
  • Language: English

From abject poverty to undisputed political boss of Pennsylvania, Lincoln’s secretary of war, senator, chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and a founder of the Republican Party, Simon Cameron (1799–1889) was one of the 19th century’s most prominent political figures. In his wake, however, he left a series of questionable political and business dealings and, at the age of 80, even a sex scandal.

Far more than a biography of Cameron, Amiable Scoundrel is also a portrait of an era that allowed – indeed, encouraged – a man such as Cameron to seize political control. A key figure in designing and implementing the Union’s military strategy during the Civil War’s crucial first year, Cameron played an essential role in pushing Abraham Lincoln to permit the enlistment of African Americans into the US Army, a stance that eventually led to his forced resignation. Yet, his legacy has languished, nearly forgotten save for the fact that his name has become shorthand for corruption, even though no evidence has ever been presented to prove that Cameron was corrupt.

Amiable Scoundrel puts Cameron’s actions into a larger historical context by demonstrating that many politicians of the time, including Abraham Lincoln, used similar tactics to win elections and advance their careers. This study is the fascinating story of Cameron’s life and an illuminating portrait of his times.

Published by University of Nebraska Press.

“This book is essential for any civil war historian’s library.” – San Francisco Book Review

“A political biography that every Civil War student should read.” – Civil War Books and Authors

“A thought-provoking biography.” – BlueGray Magazine

Additional information


Paul Kahan




9 hrs and 47 mins

Narrated by

Michael Kazalski

Release date



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