This biopic focuses on Andrew Johnson, the first American president to be impeached. Initially an uneducated drifter who stumbles upon a job as a tailor in a Tennessee town, Johnson (Van Heflin) is taught to read by librarian and future wife, Eliza (Ruth Hussey). Eliza convinces him to enter a local election, and, from there, Johnson rises swiftly. However, after inheriting the presidency in the wake of Abraham Lincoln's assassination, he finds himself on unsteady political ground.
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