Thursday, February 19, 2009

Lincoln Bicentennial

The Bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln's birth (1809-2009) has prompted a wealth of new works and commentary on the life of the sixteenth president.

The Library of Congress has produced a wonderful website detailing many events and exhibits surrounding the bicentennial. The site also includes an interactive time-line and a wealth of links and suggestions for further reading and study.

Oxford University Press maintains an interesting blog and has devoted a number of recent posts to Lincoln. The first is an excerpt of a new biography by Princeton historian James M. McPherson. McPherson was recently at Stanford and delivered a talk in a symposium on Abraham Lincoln and the West, sponsored by the Bill Lane Center for the Study of the North American West. McPherson will return to deliver the Presidential Lecture on April 13, 2009.

Additional posts on the OUP blog include a series of FAQ’s with Allen Guelzo, author of LINCOLN: A Very Short Introduction, and a look at how Lincoln almost failed by Jennifer Weber author of COPPERHEADS: The Rise and Fall of Lincoln’s Opponents in the North.

The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois, also maintains a wonderfully informative website, while the Newberry Library in Chicago also hosts a number of excellent online exhibits dealing with Lincoln.

At Stanford, the library is very fortunate to have an endowed book fund dedicated to collecting materials dealing with Lincoln and the Civil War era. The fund was established by Mrs. Virginia Fehrenbacher, in honor of her late husband, esteemed Lincoln scholar and Stanford History Professor, Don E. Fehrenbacher. Here are a few recent titles of Lincoln scholarship purchased with the Fehrenbacher Fund:

James M. McPherson, Tried by War: Abraham Lincoln as Commander in Chief (New York: Penguin, 2008)

Eric Foner, ed. Our Lincoln: New Perspectives on Lincoln and his World (New York: Norton, 2008)

Rodney O. Davis and Douglas L. Wilson, eds. The Lincoln-Douglas Debates: The Lincoln Studies Center Edition (Urbana: Knox College and University of Illinois Press, 2008)

John Stauffer, Giants: The parallel lives of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln (New York: Twelve, 2008)

Gerald J. Prokopowicz, Did Lincoln Own Slaves? And other frequently asked questions about Abraham Lincoln (New York: Pantheon, 2008)