Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Fact-Checking Lincoln

How does one go about fact-checking Lincoln? Put another way, if you land a job aiding film makers in their pursuit of historical accuracy, where do you turn?

Well, you can start with a plethora of secondary sources. Then, cull those sources for information about specific events and dates so that you can pull primary sources (e.g., transcripts of speeches, Congressional hearings and reports). For the latter, check out Congressional and Presidential collections on HeinOnline and ProQuest Congressional. If you're not finding what you're looking for online, keep two things in mind: (1) the database you're searching may not have the coverage dates you need (e.g., you might be looking for something from 1864, but the database only includes items as old as 1900); and (2) just come in to the library (or call or email!) for good ol' antiquated paper. We're happy to help.