If you're like me, you have a cursory understanding of American history. You know the big events, the big players, wars etc. but may be surprised when you go a little deeper than the front page of the major chapters of a High School History book.
For example, I knew their was a 'Mexican War', but for some reason, I always thought that it took place in what were once Mexican territories, New Mexico of course, Texas, California... but I had no idea that the U.S. Army marched all the way down to Mexico City and occupied it.
It seems ridiculous that I don't know this, but there it is. It really happened.
One of the best parts about this project is that you find these kinds of things out. It seems like the majority of a lot of these biographies (especially the ones on minor presidents like Taylor who died in office) focus mostly on the movements and events that happened leading up to their presidency and I'm OK with that.
The viewpoint from one author to another will change dramatically or focus on different parts of the country. All this variety fills in a lot of blanks for me and makes me appreciate the complex nature of our history.