Author and Editor


Battleground 1948:
Truman, Stevenson, Douglas, and the Most Surprising Election in Illinois History

Southern Illinois University Press, $39.50

The election year of 1948 remains to this day one of the most astonishing in U.S. political history. In Battleground 1948, Robert E. Hartley offers the first comprehensive chronicle of this historic election year in Illinois and its consequences, which still resonate today. Focusing on the races that ushered Adlai Stevenson, Paul Douglas, and Harry Truman into office—the last by the slimmest of margins—Battleground 1948 details the pivotal events that played out in the state of Illinois, from the newspaper wars in Chicago to tragedy in the coalmine at Centralia.

In addition to in-depth revelations on the saga of the American election machine in 1948, Hartley probes the dark underbelly of Illinois politics in the 1930s and 1940s to set the stage, spotlight key party players, and expose the behind-the-scenes influences of media, money, corruption, and crime. In doing so, he draws powerful parallels between the politics of the past and those of the present.

Awarded a Certificate of Excellence from the Illinois State Historical Society.

1948_persp_250Product Detail:
264 pages, 6 x 9, 14 Illus.
Publisher: SIU Press

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A smooth writer who melds significant facts into flowing prose, Hartley examines a significant election for the nation—and the state.

Illinois Times