Men with the President’s Ear
Isachar Zacharie: Lincoln’s Foot Doctor (1827-1900)
Zacharie enjoyed Mr. Lincoln’s confidence, perhaps more than any other private individual . . . [and was] perhaps the most favored family visitor to the White House.
- New York World, 1864
Isachar Zacharie, a successful New York chiropodist, moved to Washington, where his practice included Union generals, Cabinet secretaries, and the President.
In 1863, at Lincoln’s request, Zacharie met with Judah Benjamin, the Jewish Secretary of State of the Confederacy, to propose peace negotiations. Opposed by Lincoln’s cabinet, the plan was quickly dropped. Many of Lincoln’s advisors did not trust Dr. Zacharie and derided him as doing little more than cutting toenails and removing corns. Zacharie later campaigned for Lincoln’s reelection among Jews in the North.