Lincoln: A Very Short Introduction
Allen C. Guelzo (Oxford University Press, 2009)
One of the nation’s leading Lincoln scholars offers a brief
introduction not only to the life of our sixteenth president, but also the
essence of the man and his mind—no small feat given the copious amounts of ink
that have been spilled in the quest to understand Lincoln.
Lincoln: A Biography
P. Thomas (Alfred A Knopf, 1952)
virtue of its vivid writing, scrupulous research, and considered judgments,
Benjamin Thomas’s biography is among the very best of the thousands of books on
Lincoln. A masterful storyteller, Thomas brings Lincoln and his times to
vibrant life and concludes that the martyred president embodied, as few leaders
have, America’s fundamental principles of liberty and equality.
of the Life of Frederick Douglass: An American Slave, Written by Himself
by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (Dell, 1997)
Douglass recounts his life as a slave, including how he learned to read, the
cruel whippings and murders of helpless slaves, and ultimately his innate
desire to be free. An instant best-seller from the man who advised President
Lincoln and became America’s first black “public intellectual.”
of the House Divided: An Interpretation of the Issues in the Lincoln–Douglas
V. Jaffa (University of Chicago Press, 1959)
authoritative response to revisionist historians who asserted that there were no
substantial differences between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas. Taking the
reader through a detailed analysis of their famous debates, Jefferson shows
that Lincoln affirmed a different and higher doctrine than Douglas.
A New Birth of Freedom
Harry V. Jaffa (Rowman & Littlefield, 2004)
A New Birth of Freedom is the culmination
of nearly a half-century of study and reflection by one of the nation’s
foremost scholars of American history and politics, Harry V. Jaffa. This sequel
to Crisis of the House Divided continues Jaffa’s examination of the
political thought of Abraham Lincoln and the legacy of the American Founding.
Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era
M. McPherson (Ballantine Books, 1988)
accepted as the standard one-volume history of the Civil War, Battle Cry of
Freedom offers a dramatic, integrated, and always accessible narrative of
the tumultuous period, from the events that preceded secession through the end
of the war.
Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation: The
End of Slavery in America
Allen C. Guelzo (Simon &
Tracing the development and impact
of the Emancipation Proclamation, this detailed history illuminates Lincoln’s
political and moral reasoning and confirms his sincere desire to stamp out slavery.
Union and Liberty: The
Political Philosophy of John C. Calhoun
Edited by Ross M. Lence (Liberty
Calhoun was an apologist for slavery, rejected the
Declaration’s affirmation that all men are created equal, and asserted “states’
rights.” Yet he is essential reading for anyone interested in understanding the
present-day rejection of the Declaration, the Founders, and Lincoln. Of special
interest are Calhoun’s Fort Hill Address and his two treatises on government — A
Disquisition on Government and the Discourse on the Constitution and Government
of the United States.
Lincoln: Speeches and Writings 1832-1858
Edited by Don E. Fehrenbacher (Library of
Lincoln is the greatest interpreter of America’s Founding
principles, and it was through the Civil War and subsequent constitutional
amendments that the Constitution was brought into conformity with those
principles. As companion volumes to the other readings, Lincoln’s own writings
are crucial to understanding the man. The first volume includes all seven of
the Lincoln-Douglas debates.
The Civil War Sesquicentennial
Written commentary and audio lectures by
historians and political scientists to mark the 150th anniversary of the Civil
Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History:
Features lectures and essays on Lincoln by leading
historians, plus a list of Lincoln Book Prize winners.
Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History:
A one-stop shop for the institute’s Civil War
resources, including podcasts from prominent historians, links to the
institute’s Civil War journal, and curriculum modules for teachers.
Claremont Review: Lincoln Bicentennial
A fine selection of essays and book reviews from
the Claremont Review of Books on our sixteenth president, including pieces
by Harry Jaffa and Allen Guelzo.
Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial
In honor of the Lincoln bicentennial, Teaching
American History has assembled Lincoln-related primary sources (organized by
topic), written and audio commentary from Lincoln historians, lesson plans for
teachers, and links to some of the best Lincoln-related organizations on the
Abraham Lincoln Institute
Information about the institute’s annual
conference and the winners of its book and dissertation prizes.