Dolley Madison

The Problem of National Unity


By Catherine Allgor

Formats and Prices





  1. Trade Paperback $22.00
  2. ebook $12.99

This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around September 25, 2012. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.

First Lady of the United States and America’s “Queen of Hearts,” Dolley Madison fashioned an unofficial role for herself in the new administration of the United States, helping to answer the nation’s need for ceremony and leaving footprints for centuries of presidential wives to follow. Assisting her husband, James Madison, she helped to promote national unity, modeling a political behavior that stressed civility and empathy. Together, their approach fueled bipartisanship in a country still assembling a political identity.

About the Lives of American Women series:
Selected and edited by renowned women's historian Carol Berkin, these brief biographies are designed for use in undergraduate courses. Rather than a comprehensive approach, each biography focuses instead on a particular aspect of a women's life that is emblematic of her time, or which made her a pivotal figure in the era. The emphasis is on a “good read,” featuring accessible writing and compelling narratives, without sacrificing sound scholarship and academic integrity. Primary sources at the end of each biography reveal the subject's perspective in her own words. Study questions and an annotated bibliography support the student reader.


On Sale
Sep 25, 2012
Page Count
192 pages
Avalon Publishing

Catherine Allgor

About the Author

Catherine Allgor is professor of history at UC Riverside where she holds the prestigious UC Presidential Chair. She earned her PhD from Yale in 1998, where she also won the Yale Teaching Award. Her dissertation won prizes, including the best dissertation in U.S. Women’s history in the country. Her book Parlor Politics: In Which the Ladies of Washington Help Build a City and a Government won the prize for the best first book by the Society for Historians of the Early American Republic. Her book, A Perfect Union: Dolley Madison and the Creation of the American Nation, was published in 2006 and was a finalist for the George Washington Prize. In 2012, Allgor was awarded a presidential appointment to the James Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation. She is a popular speaker and consultant and has worked with many museums and institutions, including the White House.
Series Editor Carol Berkin is a well-known women's historian and the author of many popular and scholarly books, including Civil War Wives. She is Professor of History Emerita at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, and she is a member of the Society of American Historians.

Learn more about this author