Biographies Book

Books written and signed by American presidents

In recent years, there has been a growing audience for books written and signed by US presidents. This article explores some of the most common books written and signed by modern American presidents.

One of the first American presidents to write a book was Thomas Jefferson and his only complete book known as Virginia State Notes. Originally written in 1782 and published anonymously in Paris, Virginia State Notes contains Jefferson’s political philosophy interspersed with geographical descriptions of the state of Virginia. Signed copies bearing Thomas Jefferson’s autograph are known to exist but are extremely rare.

More recently, Calvin Coolidge rose to prominence as a syndicated newspaper columnist after his political career. His autobiography was published in 1928, and copies inscribed “Regards Calvin Coolidge” in blue ink occasionally appear on the autograph market.

Beginning in 1922, Coolidge’s successor, Herbert Hoover, published five books, including his popular three-volume Memoirs between 1951 and 1952. Memoirs describes his presidency, from 1929 to 1933. Unlike Hoover’s handwritten letters, which are very rare, books written and signed by Herbert Hoover are quite common.

John Kennedy wrote several books which included Why England Slept, Courage ProfilesAnd The peace strategy. Published in 1956, Profiles in Courage became a best-seller and earned Kennedy accolade as the only U.S. president to win a Pulitzer Prize. Signed copies of Kennedy’s books are highly valued.

Books written by Lyndon Baines Johnson, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama describe their philosophy, background and political rise. Many of their books are readily available as signed copies.

Jimmy Carter has several accolades in the literary world. Carter holds the record for the most books written by a President of the United States (twenty-seven). Carter was also the first American president to write a book of poetry (Always a Judgment and Other Poems1995) and the first American president to write a novel (The hornet’s nest, 2002). Carter has signed numerous commercial editions of her books as well as a large number of limited editions.

Collectors avidly seek out books written and signed by American presidents. A book autographed by a President of the United States brings a personal touch and validates his written testimony.

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