The Colonel’s Dream Of Power

In a little-known novel President Wilson’s private adviser depicted a benevolent American dictator

The author of this political fantasy was as self-effacing as his hero: the work was published anonymously. “The authorship of Philip Dru: Administrator,” said the New York Times in January, 1913, “still remains a puzzle to those persons, not uncommon, who like to establish the association between a man and his work. Philip Dru is a real enigma …” In reality, the author of the enigma was one of the most remarkable men in American history—the man whom Woodrow Wilson once called “my second personality … my independent self“—Colonel Edward M. House of Texas.