Woodrow Wilson 1856-1924
Published on November 30, 2012
The son of a Presbyterian minister, Thomas Woodrow Wilson was born in Staunton, Virginia, in 1856. Wilson was an attorney who later became professor of political science and president of Princeton University. In 1911, at the age of 55, Wilson was elected the Democratic governor of New Jersey. In the following year, he was elected president of the U.S.A. Wilson initiated a number of ambitious reforms : the election of senators by direct universal suffrage, a reduction in import taxes, the creation of an income tax, and the beginning of anti-trust legislation. When war erupted in Europe, Wilson, a confirmed pacifist, suggested mediation. Unfortunately, Colonel House, whom Wilson had appointed mediator, failed. On April 6, 1917, the United States entered the war. Wilson hoped that at the conflict’s end, the United States would be in a position to negotiate a "New World Order" wherein nations could settle future disputes peacefully. But the weaknesses of the peace treaties and Congress’s rejection of the League of Nations ended this dream. Woodrow Wilson died in 1924.