Adlai Stevenson II
Historical Figure
Nationality: United States
Date of Birth: 1900
Date of Death: 1965
Cause of Death: Heart attack
Religion: Unitarian
Occupation: Lawyer, farmer, diplomat, Author of Non-Fiction, politician
Parents: Lewis Stevenson,
Helen Davis
Spouse: Ellen Borden (m. 1928, divorced 1949)
Children: Adlai III, Borden, John
Relatives: Adlai Stevenson I (grandfather)
Military Branch: United States Navy
Political Party: Democratic Party
Political Office(s): Governor of Illinois,
Ambassador to United Nations
Fictional Appearances:
The Hot War
POD: November, 1950
Appearance(s): Fallout;
Type of Appearance: Contemporary references (F), Direct (A)
Political Office(s): Governor of Illinois

Adlai Ewing Stevenson II (February 5, 1900 – July 14, 1965) was an American politician and diplomat, noted for his intellectual demeanor, eloquent public speaking, and promotion of progressive causes in the Democratic Party. He served as the 31st Governor of Illinois, and received the Democratic Party's nomination for president in 1952 even though he had not campaigned in the primaries. Stevenson was defeated in a landslide by Republican Dwight Eisenhower in the general election. In 1956, he was again the Democratic presidential nominee against Eisenhower, but was defeated in an even greater landslide. He sought the Democratic presidential nomination for a third time in 1960, but was defeated by Senator John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts. After his election, President Kennedy appointed Stevenson as Ambassador to the United Nations. He served from 1961 until his death in London from a heart attack.

Stevenson's grandfather was Adlai Stevenson I, the 23rd Vice President of the United States.

Adlai Stevenson II in The Hot War[]

Governor Adlai Stevenson of Illinois was one of several Democrats who joined the race for the party's presidential nomination after Harry Truman announced in October 1951 that he was not running for a third term. Truman had made this decision as a consequence of the disastrous course of World War III. While Stevenson had a reputation for intelligence and wit,[1] even his fellow Democrats perceived him as being disconnected from the common man.[2]

Stevenson was safely in Illinois the night the Soviet Union dropped atomic bombs on Washington, DC in May 1952. Thus, Stevenson was the only Democratic contender to survive the attack and it seemed he would get the nomination by default.[3][4]

While the war ended in Europe in July 1952[5] and the war in Asia ended a month later,[6] Truman concluded that the country was in such disarray that the presidential election scheduled for November 1952 could not take place.[7] Stevenson did not object to this decision.

In September 1952, Stevenson attended a fundraiser in Chicago where Truman gave a speech that essentially conceded that the Republicans were going to win the Congressional elections that were taking place in November, and the presidency the following year. Stevenson confronted Truman one on one, to confirm that Truman really thought Stevenson would lose. In the end, Stevenson was too rational to disagree, though he admitted he'd prefer losing to Dwight Eisenhower over losing to Richard Nixon.[8]

See Also[]


  1. Fallout, pg. 326.
  2. Ibid., pg. 246, HC.
  3. Ibid., chapter 25.
  4. Armistice, pg. 5, HC.
  5. Ibid., pgs. 155-157.
  6. Ibid., pgs 277-280, ebook.
  7. Ibid., pg. 158.
  8. Ibid., pg. 338-339, ebook.
Political offices
Preceded by
Dwight Green
Governor of Illinois
Succeeded by
William Stratton
Preceded by
James J. Wadsworth
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations
Succeeded by
Arthur Goldberg
Party political offices
Preceded by
Harry Truman
Democratic Party presidential nominee
1952, 1956 (lost both)
Succeeded by
John F. Kennedy