Drawing on the Tyler papers made available here for the first time, Dr. Seager has written a book that encompasses the political and personal life of John Tyler and his second wife, Julia, Gardiner Tyler, so comprehensively that it is in some aspects definitive. Starting with the marriage in 1844 of then President Tyler of the Virginia aristocracy to Julia Gardiner, of the wealthy New York clan (had the Gardiners married into the Tylers or the Tylers into the Gardiners?), he turns back to follow the history of Tyler and the Gardiners to that time, then follows the joint lives. There is consistent and complete attention paid to the issues of the time in which Tyler acted, in all his roles--as Congressman, Governor of Virginia, Senator, Vice-President and President, then as ex-President, still a power in Virginia politics. Tyler's stand on the tariff. Texas annexation, his attempts to stave off the Civil War and his part in the peace convention, his death shortly after becoming a Confederate Congressman; his relationships with the Presidents from Jackson through the successive regimes; his functioning politically and morally are all here. Equal attention has been given to the fates of the numerous Gardiner clan, in particular Julia as she lived out an active and fairly public life. The wealth of familial detail may be of less interest to the student of history to which this book is directed than the political material for which he will be grateful.