We all have our notion of the best Presidents of the United States. But what do the historians who chronicle modern history have to say? C-Span’s Presidential Historians survey polled almost 100 historians for the 2017 version in which President Barack Obama was included for the first time. Historians rated President based on ten different leadership qualities such as leadership in crisis, international relations, and economic management.
Here are the top ten in the list:
10. Lyndon Johnson (1963-1969):
Johnson is ranked at number 10 for his efforts in pursuing equal justice for all Americans. He urged the country “to build a great society, a place where the meaning of man’s life matches the marvels of man’s labor.” He secured Medicare for the elderly and passed over 60 bills for education.
9. Ronald Reagan (1981-1989):
Reagan rates high for his views on economic management and public persuasion skills. His vision of peace through strength saw the passage of legislation to speed up economic growth and strengthen national defense. He pressurized the Soviet Union to end the cold war.
8. John F. Kennedy (1961-1963):
His inaugural speech was one of the modern greats as he called his fellow citizens to serve the country. He is held high for his public persuasion skills and crisis management. He was assassinated while in office.
7. Thomas Jefferson (1801-1809):
Principle author of the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson is held high for his vision and agenda setting. He reduced the nation’s debt by a third during his tenure.
6. Harry Truman (1945-1953):
Historians credit him for excellent crisis management. At the peak of the World War II, he ordered the atomic bomb drops on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He also watched the establishment of the United Nations to preserve peace.
5. Dwight D. Eisenhower (1953-1961):
Eisenhower created the department of health, education, and welfare and is rated high among the Presidents for his excellent crisis management skills. He obtained a truce in Korea using the threat of atomic bombs.
4. Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt (1901-1909):
Became the youngest President of the country when he took office at just 42. Known for his progressive reforms, he is credited with doing more for the natural resources of US than any other President.
3. Franklin D. Roosevelt (1933-1945):
Facing the worst of Depression, he had immense ability to persuade people. His quote “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself” speaks volumes about the man who saw the USA through two crises.
2. George Washington (1789-1797):
The first President of the country is ranked high for moral authority, economic management, and overall performance. He established the United States Navy. He set a precedent by choosing to retire after the second term.
1. Abraham Lincoln (1861-1865):
Lincoln was at the helm at a most difficult phase in the history of the nation and led the union to victory in the civil war. In 1863, he signed the Emancipation Proclamation abolishing slavery in the USA. He also established the American banking system.