The Lincoln-Douglas Debates: The First Complete, Unexpurgated Text

By Harold Holzer | Go to book overview

A WORD ON THE
TEXTS

THE TEXTS PUBLISHED HERE for the first time since 1858 are the unedited transcripts recorded on the spot during each Lincoln-Douglas debate by the opposition press. Previous anthologies presented only the much improved, suspiciously seamless versions supposedly recorded simultaneously by each debater’s friendly newspaper.

The resurrection of these unexpurgated transcripts will give modern readers long-overdue access to the debates as they were likely heard originally by the multitudes who witnessed the encounters back in 1858. In the process, the historical record will finally be liberated from reliance on texts that long ago were processed through the alembic of hired reporters, sympathetic publishers, and ultimately Lincoln himself, whose editorial hand guided the book-length version that, in turn, has provided the basis of all the published versions since.

But as this project progressed, it became clear that adjustments would have to be made. Short of presenting every word of every transcript of every debate side by side for comparison, each page annotated with

-34-

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The Lincoln-Douglas Debates: The First Complete, Unexpurgated Text
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents ix
  • Preface to the Fordham University Press Edition xi
  • Preface xix
  • Acknowledgements xxiii
  • Introduction 1
  • A Word on the Texts 34
  • The First Joint Debate at Ottawa 40
  • The Second Joint Debate at Freeport 86
  • The Third Joint Debate at Jonesboro 136
  • The Fourth Joint Debate at Charleston 185
  • The Fifth Joint Debate at Galesburg 234
  • The Sixth Joint Debate at Quincy 277
  • The Seventh Joint Debate at Alton 321
  • Appendix - Lincoln vs. Douglas- How the State Voted 371
  • Notes 375
  • Index 383
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